Facebooks algorithm is known to favour friends and family over business posts, but how do you calculate Facebook engagement rate and why does it matter?
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How Is Facebook Engagement Measured?

Social Media Managers know that having the ability to get unbiased measurements of their outreach and promotional success is crucial. Clients and brands want to know that the advertising and social media dollars they’re spending are being put to good use. Providing the kind of proof necessary to establish your campaigns are worthwhile but can be a complex endeavour. Fortunately, Facebook offers a tool specifically for use within its platform that allows you to gain valuable insights into the amount of engagement for each post you make. Let’s take a look at how Facebook engagement is measured.

About Facebook Engagement Rate

Engagement rate is just one of the metrics collected within Facebook Insights. With this resource you can examine such data points as organic reach, people talking about each post, click-through rate and negative engagement rate. All of these criteria serve unique purposes and illustrate various points of interest.

Facebook defines engagement rate as, “the number of people who clicked anywhere on your post.” Besides knowing the total number of people who have likely viewed your post, or your reach, engagement is of particular interest to marketers. This concept includes any actions taken on your pages such as likes, comments, negative feedback and sharing.

Why do we take so much notice of Facebook engagement rate? Because it tells us how well our posts are resonating with our audience. Remember, the purpose of your social media is to entertain, educate and ENGAGE your potential audiences.

How to Measure Facebook Engagement

Your Facebook engagement rate is, essentially, the percentage of your total audience that acted on or engaged with your content.  With this information, you can calculate your brand’s reach by incorporating the sum of all actions taken on your posts and the reach. This is more accurate than basing engagement on numbers of likes, shares and comments. To calculate your Facebook engagement rate of a post using this data manually, you add the number of people who liked, commented on, shared or clicked on your post and divide that sum by the total number of people who saw your post. The resulting percentage is your engagement rate.

Of course, there is a much easier way, too!

  1. Go to your page in Facebook
  2. Click ‘Insights’ in the top menu
  3. Click ‘Posts’ in the left-hand side menu
  4. Scroll down to ‘All Posts Published’
  5. Open the drop-down menu at the end of the row above the posts as shown in the picture below
  6. ‘Choose Engagement Rate’


Why Engagement Rate Is Important

Knowing your engagement is valuable for a few reasons. It allows you to compare rates on different posts on your page. This insight can give you a clue as to the kinds of content that perform best with your audience. You can also get a feel for the engagement of your competitors by adding the total likes, shares and comments on a particular post and then dividing that number by the number of total fans the competitor has. This comparative analysis can show you the level of your audience engagement in comparison to that of your competition. You can also tell the strength of your content in relation to a competing brand.

Facebook engagement is one of the most important metrics available to marketing teams. You can see now that measuring your engagement isn’t all that complicated, but doing so can provide you with the kind of valuable information necessary for continued growth. Keeping up with your brand’s social media performance is essential to maintaining a competitive edge.

Related: 5 Proven ways to increase Facebook Engagement


What Engagement Rate Should You Be Aiming For

Facebooks algorithm is known to favour friends and family over business page posts, especially after the big 2018 update. In fact, engagement rates for businesses have been trending down across the board, as seen in Rival IQs breakdown of their 2018 Social Media Industry Benchmark Report. Given these statistics, it could be said that an engagement rate of over 1% is doing quite well. This isn’t a number I have guessed at…look at the stats below.

Here is a breakdown by industry in Rival IQs report (they have a lovely infographic and even more data on their page!):

Fashion – 0.10%
Food & Beverages – 0.24%
Health & Beauty – 0.10%
Higher Education – 0.19%
Home Decor – 0.11%
Hotels & Resorts – 0.21%
Media – 0.08%
Non Profits – 0.17%
Influencers – 0.24%
Sports Teams – 0.19%

With the median engagement rate across all industries being 0.16%

Remember that social media is meant to be social. It is much better to have a small engaged following rather than reaching the world and no-one noticing!

Let me show you an example from one of my clients’ pages:

As this screenshot shows, the reach is not that high, but they have a super-engaged audience. Only one post in the last two weeks has an engagement rate of less than 1% and that is because it was posted only a few hours ago.

Remember that engagement rate is how well you are connecting with your audience. An audience that is more connected to your brand had a higher know/like/trust factor. And that is what leads to conversions!

How is your page doing with engagement? Need to rethink your social strategy? Let’s jump on a call and get your page sorted! 


Facebooks algorithm is known to favour friends and family over business posts, but how do you calculate Facebook engagement rate and why does it matter?

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