How to understand Facebook Ads metrics and optimize your costs

Are you doing well monitoring your social media campaigns? Do you understand Facebook ad metrics ? Facebook Ads Manager offers a wealth of information about social media campaigns. You can use these advertising metrics  to understand how current initiatives are working, optimize them, and even better understand your audience.

However, if you are familiar with this tool, you have probably already realized that Facebook provides a large number of metrics… In fact, there are more than 350 metrics and advertising terms to know within the platform, and it is difficult to know how to use them correctly if you don’t understand their meaning.

It’s true that Facebook does a good job of automatically managing campaigns, but you also need to constantly monitor them and ensure that everything is running smoothly. Are you sure yours are working at peak performance?

list_altTable of Contents
  • Optimizing Facebook Ads campaigns: why is it so important?
  • Reporting of Facebook Ads campaigns
  • 11 Facebook Ads metrics you should pay attention to
  • Advanced reports with campaign breakdown
  • Understanding Facebook Ads costs
  • How to optimize and reduce the costs of Facebook campaigns
  • Facebook ad metrics: everything controlled

Optimizing Facebook Ads campaigns: why is it so important?

Your campaigns will most likely need some subsequent modifications to maximize their potential. This process is known as campaign optimization .

Optimizing advertising campaigns allows you to improve the results of campaigns once they have been activated. Your campaign metrics appear in Ads Manager from the moment you activate them, allowing you to analyze them later to plan changes to improve their performance.

Sometimes you achieve this by reducing the cost per acquisition, other times by increasing the reach of the ads and the total clicks that will be obtained from them. It is a complicated process, which increases in difficulty due to the excess of information and advertising metrics that Facebook offers .

This is why my intention with this article is for you to understand what the main Facebook ad metrics are and what they mean, and also how to use them to optimize your campaigns and obtain better results over time. We will begin, therefore, by reviewing the most important metrics of the campaigns.

Before continuing, keep in mind that this is a very technical article with quite advanced concepts from the PPC world. If you are new to this topic, I recommend that you consult my other Facebook Ads articles to get started in this world:

  • Advertising on Facebook: maximum performance with custom audiences [+Video]
  • How to set up your first Facebook Ads campaign: step by step [+Video]
  • How to create campaigns on Facebook to retarget your visitors [+Video]
  • Advertising angles: the key to transforming your advertising on Facebook [+Video]

Reporting of Facebook Ads campaigns

The easiest way to review the performance of your campaigns is directly with Facebook Ads Manager.

This is the tool from which these types of initiatives are created on Facebook. It allows you to filter by dates or objectives, among others, and measure the performance of each ad set and even each individual ad.

You can filter all the data by date range, and, in fact, an extremely useful function is to be able to compare two different ranges.

As a general rule, to know how a Facebook Ads campaign is working at a given time, it is advisable to review the results of the last 7 days. A longer period could change advertising metrics a lot , while a shorter one may not be statistically significant.

Next, you need to select a campaign by clicking on the box in front of its name. From there you can browse the ad sets and individual ads that make it up, to see the performance of each of the elements.

Although Facebook automatically displays the most relevant data for each view, you have the option to change the metrics presented at any time to generate a new report. To do this, you just need to go to the “Columns” drop-down menu and select the report that interests you most:

Obviously, you can also create a custom report with the metrics to optimize the Facebook ads that interest you most . To do so, you simply have to open the “Reports” drop-down menu and select the “Create custom report” option:

Once inside the custom reporting tool, you can select the metrics and breakdowns that interest you to analyze your campaigns:


11 Facebook Ads metrics you should pay attention to

What metrics should you select for your custom report? You have to understand that this depends entirely on the type of campaign and its objective. The first step to follow is to understand what you intend to achieve with that campaign, and based on that, select the most appropriate metrics to know if you are achieving it.

For example, the number of visits on a landing page would not be as relevant for a conversion campaign as it would be for a traffic campaign. On the other hand, in a branding campaign, reach is essential, while it is not so important in a lead generation campaign.

There are 3 large groups of metrics that Facebook offers us for the analysis of its campaigns:

  1. Performance metrics: reflect the results that the advertising campaigns are achieving and the average cost of achieving the set objectives.
  2. Engagement metrics: Show how attractive your ads are to your target audience.
  3. Conversion metrics: refer to specific results of campaigns with a conversion objective, such as the cost per purchase or the value of items added to the shopping cart.

There is also a Custom Conversions category , which we won’t delve into in this article, and a Settings category . The latter corresponds to details such as the objective configured in the campaign, or the established bid, but they are not metrics in themselves to analyze.

Below we will review the most important metrics that Facebook Ads Ads Manager offers in each category and explain its main use:

Performance metrics


Each impression represents a viewing of the ad by a user. Therefore, this metric indicates how many times an ad has been viewed.

Impressions do not guarantee a conversion. In certain cases, with very well selected target audiences and well-designed ads, a few impressions get a response from the user. In other cases, repetition is necessary, and several impressions per user will be needed to achieve the result.

For awareness campaigns and to enhance the brand name, it is an especially important metric, and can be a key indicator. For other types of campaigns such as those that generate registrations, it can be used to know if many people are being reached or not, but it will not be the main objective. This criterion allows you to diagnose problems with campaigns if, for example, they are having few results.

Nor should impressions be confused with reach. Impressions represent the total number of times an ad has been viewed, while reach reflects the total number of people who have seen the ad.

Amount spent

Of course, spending must be monitored to ensure that we are within budget for a specific period of time. It is a metric that by itself gives us little information about the performance of the campaign: to know if the results are good, it is necessary to analyze other performance metrics and, very importantly, the ROAS (we will define it later).

In any case, it is important to take the expense into account to know the total investment that has been made in the campaign.


The results metric shows how many times the campaign has achieved the expected result. These results can be, depending on the campaign, website purchases, leads, submitted forms or also personalized conversions.

In the same way as with the total spending of the campaign, the results metrics of others must be monitored to know if the campaign is working optimally. If a campaign achieves many results but inefficiently and at a high cost, it is necessary to try to optimize it and even consider pausing it.

Cost per result

This metric shows the relationship between the results obtained and the campaign spending, in a given period. In other words, it is the result of dividing what you have spent on this campaign by the number of results you have achieved.

or example, if a campaign has the objective of capturing registrations, it will show you how much it costs you to obtain each one of them. On the other hand, if you are looking to increase the number of impressions of an ad, you will be able to know how much each 1,000 impressions cost you. This is especially useful if you want to forecast results or budgets.

Therefore, the cost per result shows us how efficient the campaign is in achieving its objectives. The lower this cost per result, the better, although it is difficult to establish absolute assessments of cost per result. To interpret this metric, it is best to compare it between campaigns and ad sets, and also evaluate its trend.

Result rate

The result rate is the percentage of results obtained in relation to the total number of impressions. In other channels and platforms it is also known as “conversion rate”, when the expected result is a lead or an action.

A high hit rate means that the ad is getting enough attention and performing well. On the other hand, a low rate of results may indicate that the campaign needs to be optimized or paused permanently.

Click-Through Rate (CTR)

CTR establishes a relationship between the number of clicks that an ad has received and the number of times that ad has been viewed on Facebook (impressions). Therefore, CTR determines how well the ad performs with the target audience.

If the cost per result is high or no results are achieved, it is a good idea to check if the CTR is below average, that is, if the ads convert well or poorly. It is very possible that you are reaching many people but they are not interested in the ad. An excessively low CTR means that you are getting few clicks on the impressions you are purchasing and, therefore, the cost per click increases significantly.

Creating an attractive offer, good copy and attention-grabbing creativity are measures that will help you improve the CTR of your campaigns.


Frequency indicates how many times on average each person in the target audience has seen our ad in a given period of time (which is why it is important to indicate in which period you want to view it). This is a somewhat forgotten metric, but I think it is essential to monitor to know if you need to renew the ads or not.

For example, if no more results are achieved and the frequency in the last week has been 10, it means that each person in the segmentation will have seen the ad an average of 10 times, so you probably have to think about renewing it.

When the frequency is high, a phenomenon called ” banner blindness” can occur , which occurs when an ad appears excessively in a user’s feed. The moment that happens, the ad begins to be ignored, and you are paying for impressions that will no longer convert into results. Therefore, it is time to renew your ads to continue achieving good results.


The CPM metric reflects the cost of purchasing 1,000 impressions for a given campaign or ad set. This is a metric commonly used in the advertising world, and can vary greatly depending on the target audience, campaign segmentation, locations, etc.


Engagement metrics

Post interactions

Interactions are the reactions, shares, number of clicks and comments that your ads receive. An ad with a lot of engagement means you’ve gotten a reaction from your target audience (for better or worse).

Getting a lot of interactions for your ads is positive because it means that your ads are not ignored.

Video views and percentage of video played

If you have active video campaigns, it is essential to monitor these metrics. Especially the percentage metrics, because they indicate how many times your video has been viewed up to 25% of its duration, up to 50%, etc.

Interesting videos get a large number of people to watch them and stay until the end, although this response also depends on how relevant the ad is to your target audience.

Conversion metrics

Return On Ad Spend (ROAS)

In a very summary way, ROAS measures how much money you invest in a campaign vs. how much money you get thanks to that campaign. In a not so summary way, measure the profitability of your advertising campaigns based on the gross income obtained thanks to the investment in advertising.

Therefore, ROAS is probably the most important high-level metric for any advertising campaign that aims to achieve a transaction with the target audience. I am referring to advertising campaigns for online stores, restaurants, events, ticket sales, etc.

Although other metrics are needed for specific campaigns such as application downloads, these eleven are key for practically any type of network advertising initiative.

Next, I want to show you how to introduce other dimensions in the analysis of the performance of online advertising on Facebook.


Advanced reports with campaign breakdown

We have just seen the most relevant metrics for any type of Facebook campaign. The next step is to use the Breakdown menu so you can get more precise details of how the campaigns are working:

When you select a specific campaign, it is possible to break down the report based on the following criteria:

  • By delivery: age, gender, country, platform, device, time of day, etc.
  • By action: conversion device, type of reaction to the post, destination, type of video playback, etc.
  • By time: day, week, two weeks or a month.

These are options that are not entirely obvious (most of the time you will not notice them), however, they are associated with great potential for analysis. For example, they allow you to discover:

  • Which ad placements work best.
  • Which times of the day or which days of the week generate more conversions at a lower price.
  • Which countries work best.

With everything you have learned, you will notice that it is easier for you to create weekly or daily reports that arrive to you by email automatically. After creating a report in Ads Manager with the advertising metrics that interest you and the breakdown you want , you only need to select the “Save new report” option and then name the report and choose the desired frequency.

Understanding Facebook Ads costs

After reviewing Facebook ad metrics and how to obtain them , we should understand how campaign costs are determined. It’s easy if you know how Facebook’s bidding system works.

Facebook works like an auction. You don’t pay a fixed price to Facebook to display your ads. On the contrary, every time you want to launch an ad you enter an auction to buy advertising space, competing with other companies that are doing the same thing. This is why answering the question “how much does it cost to advertise on Facebook?” It is extremely complex as it depends on many factors that determine auction prices.

Some of the most important factors are:

  • The audience you are segmenting: a common mistake is to think that you compete with companies in the same sector. In reality, the competition is made up of all the companies that want to reach a specific group of people (a senior audience, millennials, etc.).
  • Ad quality: Even if your targeting is perfectly configured, the quality of your ad can increase or minimize what you have to pay to obtain results. This is measured by the relevance score (a score with which Facebook analyzes the relevance of the ad to the audience) and the CTR (if it is high it means that the advertising is relevant and, therefore, the cost will lower).
  • Time of year: There are times when many companies want to appear on Facebook, so you compete with many other advertisers and the auction is tougher. Examples of this are sales, Black Friday, Christmas, etc.

Taking these criteria into account, you can already intuit the influence that can be had on the campaigns and the actions that should be taken to optimize them.

How to optimize and reduce the costs of Facebook campaigns

Next, I would like to review a series of actions that allow:

  • Increase CTR.
  • Reduce the CPC of campaigns.
  • Reach audiences with a high ROI.
  • Reduce Cost per result.

I already went into this topic in my previous article “ How to optimize your Facebook Ads campaigns to achieve spectacular results ”.

But here I want to share with you some techniques and actions that I did not mention, but that are very useful to achieve these objectives.

One of the most interesting possibilities that many advertisers overlook is the option to use an existing post when we are creating a new ad , instead of creating an ad from scratch.

This way you can take advantage of the same Facebook post to run all the campaigns , with different segmentations and bidding strategies, centralizing all the interactions (comments, likes, etc.) in the same post. Have you ever wondered how advertisers manage to get thousands of interactions on a single post ? Well, they are using this technique.

To do this, you first have to launch the post on the Facebook page and then select it when you create the campaign.

Another very useful technique is to optimize ad delivery . If your campaigns are running 24/7, you’re doing it wrong. Do you remember what we talked about before about the breakdown of campaigns ? You can use the day-of-week breakdown to see which days give you the lowest Cost Per Result, and then set your ad sets to show our ads only on these days.

To achieve this, when you are creating your campaign you must select a total budget, and also the option to publish the ads according to a calendar.


Then, when creating your ad set, you can select the days and times you want your ads to show:

Another technique that will improve your results is to optimize segmentation by excluding users who have already converted within the target audience. Although it seems logical that there is no need to continue showing ads to people who have already been interested in your offer, it is easy to forget to do so.

To achieve this, you only need to create a custom audience with people who have already converted (selecting, for example, those who have visited the thank you page) and exclude this audience from targeting.

The last technique that I want to show you has the objective of accelerating the results of the campaigns when they are activated . Although it may seem immediate, when activating a Facebook campaign it has an acceleration period of a few days. At first you will achieve results very slowly and gradually you will pick up speed. This happens especially when managing small budgets.

To compensate for this effect, it is a good idea to start allocating a budget, whether daily or total, higher than expected, wait to achieve a good number of impressions (for example, more than 10,000) and then start optimizing (when have enough data). It is necessary to take into consideration that any adjustments made to a campaign will take between 24 and 48 hours to take effect.

From here you can reduce the budget to match the actual one. This is better than using accelerated ad delivery, since in the latter case Facebook focuses on speed, leaving aside quality and cost .

Facebook ad metrics: everything controlled

If you have read the entire article, you already know all the Facebook Ads metrics and you also know how to get any data you may need for your analysis . Finding a way to create custom reports from this data should have no secrets for you.

It is important that, when launching your campaigns on social networks, you do not stop at analyzing advertising metrics and pay attention to cost management .

With the review I have done of the Facebook bidding system and, if you take into account which factors mentioned in this post influence the price of your campaigns, you will be able to gain adjustment. I wish you great success when applying the techniques to optimize costs and achieve the results you expect from your investment in Facebook Ads .

About Author

My self Umer. I’m an Author and Founder of I’m from Pune and If I talk about my Education then I’m Graduate and complete my MBA (Finance & Accounts). I love to share my experience and knowledge to others, that’s why I’m here.

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