Facebook Insights to See More Stream Activity

facebook insightsInsights, Facebook’s fan Page traffic analytics service, is going to start measuring click-through rates (CTRs) and engagement rates (“ETRs”) for Page content that appears in users’ news feeds. The move, spotted by buzzmarketing daily in the “Learn More” section of Insights, will let Page owners see when users click on posts generated by the Page, or engage by “liking” or commenting on them.

These new metrics are another step toward helping Page owners more accurately understand what sort of content users click on and engage with the most, then tailor their posts accordingly.

While Insights is not as full-featured as Google Analytics and other tools for measuring traffic on the web — these rates are just estimates, and don’t provide granular traffic details for individual posts — the service has been steadily improving over the past year. In fact, one of the two forthcoming metrics, the “Stream click-through rate,” was first announced as part of a larger upgrade this past May. It just hasn’t been rolled out yet. Meanwhile, many third parties have been trying to do their own evaluations of click-through rates; see some earlier estimates of Page wall CTRs for more on that.

The other metric, the previously-unannounced engagement rate, follows Facebook’s efforts to help brands interact with users anywhere on the site. In early June, the company introduced a new form of ad that lets users become a fan of a page by clicking a button on the ad. This way, users don’t need to click through to the actual page to become a fan. While Facebook wants to encourage users to visit Pages, it’s also trying to make it easier for users to sign up for stream updates without leaving the page. If that original engagement happens elsewhere on the site rather than on the Page itself, so much the better.