Does ROI Exist on Facebook? Measuring your social revenue

9 out of 10 UK businesses are increasing their Facebook ad spend this year. With UK now having 30 million active registered users on Facebook and 800 million+ users globally, the leading social network retains its attractiveness for marketers to engage their target market with.

Facebook 800 Million Worldwide Users
How would you translate this number to profits?

On the other side of the fence are businesses who are looking to spend less because they can’t see the return on investment from using Facebook.

While there is so much debate about Facebook and ROI, it goes without saying that social media yields immeasurable returns such as people recommending a brand to their friends or a fan posting positive feedback on your wall.

What can be measured?

Website visits from Facebook. According to Experian Hitwise, a single Facebook fan can drive 20 more website visitors per year. But instead of multiplying your fans by 20 – why not measure actual visitors to your site referred by Facebook?

You can do this by setting up advanced segments on your Google Analytics account. This involves not more than 5 steps and only takes minutes to setup. This allows you to identify visitors coming from Facebook domains (i.e.,, so you can compare them against other referrers, total web visits, etc.

Actual Engagement. It’s challenging to measure the value of a single like but with the new Facebook Insights, social marketers can track which efforts yield the most “reaction” and engagement from users. It is an essential tool to keep track of your social progress and tailor initiatives that satisfies the social appetite of your target audience.

Statistical Goodies from the new Facebook Insights

Statistical Goodies from the new Facebook Insights

Likes – More than just total number of likes, the improved Facebook Insights can track where people liked your page from. Remember that you can install Facebook Like boxes and buttons onto your websites and blogs to tell people about your page. Facebook Insights track these “Liking” activities including those that came from third party apps, the timeline, and likes directly from the Facebook page. You can track the origin of your Likes from until the past 89 days and get a feel of what activities make people like you (i.e. running promotions, giving away free guides, etc.). Obviously, you’ll need to take note of your social media efforts and match them with the corresponding dates.

What about unlikes? Insights show these too, usually the green line represents the number of dislikes your page received. Just as above, when you get unusual number of dislikes – match them with your Facebook activities to decipher what you did that made people dislike you, no matter how terrible it sounds.

Reach – Finally we get a clearer idea of how much people a Facebook page is really able to reach! With the new Facebook Insights, you can check the virality of your Page - meaning the unique people who’ve seen a story about your page from a friend. If you remember, whenever a fan engages with your Facebook Page, chances are that their activity is reflected on their own feed for their friends to see. And that’s what virality is all about! Just one of the many reasons why many brands are capitalizing on their Facebook presence.

Facebook Reach Metrics

How about FB ads? When most businesses will spend more on Facebook ads this year (and Facebook is planning to give free ad credits to UK SMEs), it’s no surprise that Facebook offers a more solid statistic on paid reach. This will show how many people can see a page’s Facebook Ad or Sponsored Story.

Nonetheless, organic reach is also displayed and you can ultimately compare your page’s viral, organic, and paid reach. If your organic and viral reach can duplicate or even surpass paid reach, would you still pay for ad credits? That’s a good question this Insight can answer.

People Talking About This – Are you obsessed with your total number of likes? That big bold magic number below your profile banner says nothing more than clicks on the like button. Ouch! So yes, an X number of people like your brand but are they engaged? Do they comment on your posts, share your content with their friends, mention your brand, or like the stuff you post? You’re about to discover the number behind your super fans!

Graph of how people are talking about your Facebook Page

Facebook Insights now reveal the number of people who’ve engaged with your page in the past 7 days, together with their viral reach. For instance, 24 people directly engaged with your page this week and you’ll be surprised to see how 266 more people are reached as a result. This Insight also reveals how these people are engaging with your page: page likes, stories from your posts, mentions and photo tags, or posts by others.

Why is this number too small? The number of People Talking About This changes on a weekly basis, take note of that so you don’t feel bad to see how smaller it is compared to your total number of likes.

So, does your business need to be on Facebook?

Here’s a FREE ebook to help you decide. As a community of B2B wholesalers and online traders, we note how social media is not fully utilised in our industry. (Should we try to connect with our customers beyond eBay, Amazon, or our online store?) Hence, we developed this short guide to hopefully, inspire more of us to kickstart our social media blueprint and start building real engagement.

Does your business need to be on Facebook?

This ebook is exclusive to members of The Wholesale Forums. Access it here after logging into your members account.

Lace Llanora is the community and social media manager of The Wholesale Forums UK. She enjoys keeping up with the latest social trends and sharing the...
  • M
    Matt Gibson
  • February 1st, 2012
Really helpful info. I'm just starting a Facebook page to help drive sales to my new online store. Struggling at the minute but determined to make it work.

Thanks for such great tips.

    You're welcome Matt, that's really exciting and let us know how it goes! :)

    Glad to see you here at The Supplier Central too.
  • A
  • February 2nd, 2012
We understand the effectiveness of facebook and do see some refferal traffic coming in everyday from facebook. We are willing to explore further with facebook advertising - Yet we would like to track specific conversions related to facebook ads. Is there a way of coding facebook ads with our website conversion page on the website to track conversions from ads. We are also willing to spend on getting facebook likes and engagement to the page as we realise a community is important for a brand.
    Hi Andy, thanks for mentioning Facebook Ads. With the number of people using Facebook, using it as a serious advertising platform becomes even more attractive (especially with their targeting features). Some marketers swear by Google Analytics (look at setting up custom segments) to track inbound traffic from Facebook. They then compare this to the information FB provides to advertisers such as CPCs, CTRs, etc.

    Have you ever thought about using competitions to increase your fan base?
  • L
    Lilla Wilkinson
  • September 11th, 2021
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