Are your Facebook or Instagram Ads working?

Are your Facebook or Instagram Ads working?


Do you know how to tell if your Facebook or Instagram ads are working? Sure, your bank balance may well tell the tale of success or failure, but actually there is a little more detective work that you can do.

It’s best practice to keep an eye on your ads and to check on their performance. The ads that you can identify as not working can be rethought or switched off – either way you won’t be wasting your money. But how do you actually know whether they are working?

Metrics in Facebook Ads Manager

Let’s look at what metrics you should be looking for in your Ads Manager to check that an ad has done its job. Yes, I know that the first screen when you open Ads Manager is a bit daunting, but don’t let that put you off, I’m here to talk you through it.

Finding your way around Facebook Ads Metrics

By default, this first screen shows you the performance of your ad. But it doesn’t necessarily give you the information that you want to see.

To find where to change the view of your metrics -

  • Look at the top bar above the numbers. On the right-hand side find the ‘Breakdown’ button,
  • To the left of the ‘Breakdown’ button you’ll see the ‘Columns’ button. Here is where you can change the columns to show you the information that you need to see.

As you’ll want more detail, I recommend that you go down to Performance and Clicks.

A good indication for whether your Facebook or Instagram ads are working is to look at the CTR (Link Click Through Rate – not All though):

  • For a cold audience, that’s the people who have not heard of your brand before, the ideal CTR is 1% and above, or as close to 1% as you can get. This shows you the percentage of people who are clicking on your ad. If you are achieving this figure, you’re doing a great job. Your ad copy and your images are appealing to the audience that you're advertising to. If the percentage is way lower that 1% it’s clear that the ad isn’t doing its job properly. In this scenario, rethink the content and the imagery and test a new version.
  • For warm audiences, those who already know about your brand, the CTR should be higher, around 1.5% to 3%. Again if it’s falling short, you need to rethink your ad creative.

How to set up your personal preset metrics.

The other really useful thing that you can do on the Columns drop down is to head to Customise at the very bottom. From here you can choose the different metrics that you need to track.

My top tip is for you to map out the journey that you want people to take from seeing your ad and add those metrics accordingly.

Facebook Ad --> Landing Page -->Complete Registration

Say your potential customer has seen your ad, and the ads purpose was for them to click on a link which takes them through to a landing page. To know how successful this has been you’ll need to be looking at ‘landing page views’. So add this to your metrics columns to track.

From the landing page, your aim is then for them to complete a form. You may have added an ‘event’ (which is when someone takes an action on your landing page, which you can track through the Events Manager in Facebook) and classed this as ‘Complete Registration’. You can then add that metric to the columns.

If your audience are going to your landing page, but not completing the next part of the journey that indicates a problem with the landing page. For some reason, it’s not influencing a positive action. Have a look at the content and the imagery – identify what potentially is stopping the individual from taking that next step. Are you communicating your solution effectively?

Or if you have an ecommerce shop, your journey could be:

Facebook Ad --> Landing Page --> View Content --> Add to Basket --> Purchase --> Purchase Conversion Value --> Return on Ad Spend

So work your way through and search in Customise Columns to add each step to your list and remove any that aren’t necessary.

Don’t forget to save as your name at the bottom to choose each time you come into Ads Manager.

See my quick Instagram Reel here to show you how to do this quickly.

Other preset metrics that you could choose.

If all this still sounds a little technical, then there are a few preset columns that you can choose to make your life easier.

Video Engagement will track how many people have watched your video and for how long. Ideally you want the majority of people to have watched as close to 100% as possible, but Facebook charges you when you reach 15 seconds which they term a ‘Thruplay’.

Engagement shows you the page post likes, comments and shares (don’t forget that a Boosted post is merely an Engagement ad).

Messenger Engagement is for ads that you push people to start a messenger conversation with you - this preset will track all the relevant metrics in relation to this – link clicks, conversations started etc.

My final takeaway

I really don’t want you to be bamboozled by the metrics but by understanding the basics will definitely make a difference to the success of your ads – how can you continue with an ad (or stop it) if you aren’t sure whether it’s performing or not?! But, as ever, I’m here to offer my exert advice if you need it.

Rule number one is to always know the objective (the purpose) of an ad, this will allow you to understand the customer journey. Knowing what action you want your customer to take as part of your sales funnel will help you to identify the best metrics to look at to help you discover any bottlenecks.

Rule number two. Rethink, change, test and repeat! Or if it simply isn’t going to work, stop the ad and save your money.

Let me see if your Facebook or Instagram ads are working!

How would you like to have my full attention for a full hour and ask me anything? No problem, just book in your power hour for a time to suit you. It may be the best £97 you’ve spent. One hour to get whatever you need – an audit of your ad account to see what has or hasn’t worked and my advice on what to tweak to make a difference, some personal training, answers to questions about ads you intend to run to help iron out any doubt you may have about doing the best thing or simply a quick consultation on ad copy and creative to hit your audience in their feed and get them to click on your ad. It’s your time to do with what you wish! Simply book yours here. I hope to speak to you soon.


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