Using Facebook Analytics to visualize IA Subscriptions Performance

After setting up the Facebook Pixel and implementing the recommended events/parameters on your website, you can now build dashboards to visualize the performance metrics by combining them with Instant Article Subscription events on Facebook Analytics.

Note: Facebook Analytics usually shows sampled data so some of the metrics are extrapolated based on the sampling rate.

Instant Articles Events

Instant Articles send the following events to your page entity once you go live with Instant Articles Subscription.

  • ViewContent: logged when a user opens the article with Instant Article format. This event is logged both on iOS and Android.
  • fb_instant_articles_paywall_view: logged when a user sees a paywall on Instant Articles. This event is logged only on Android since on iOS Instant Articles redirects to a paywall on mobile web within an in-app-browser.
  • fb_instant_articles_offer_click: logged when a user clicks the offer link on Instant Articles. This event is logged only on Android and iOS

Create an Event Source Group

A prerequisite to creating the dashboards documented below is that you need to create an event source group to aggregate your pixel events and Instant Article events into the same Facebook Analytics entity.

Note: You must have access to a Business Manager account that owns your Instant Article page and pixel. In addition you must have an Admin role in the Business Manager account to create an ESG and share your dashboards with other admins.

  1. Go to your [Business Manager][Business Settings][Data Sources][Event Source Groups]
  2. Click [+ Add] button
  3. Set the event source name in the text box and choose Facebook Pixel and Page to add your Instant Articles page and pixel into the new event source group. image.png
  4. Click [Create Group], you'd see the event source is created.

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  5. Once you click [View Analytics], you are navigated to Facebook Analytics URL that shows the basic performance data from your pixel and page. The URL should be https://www.facebook.com/analytics/{Event Source Group ID}/, which you can bookmark.

Create a Readership Dashboard

On Facebook Analytics with your event source group, you can create a custom dashboard by clicking [Dashboards][Create Dashboard]. You can set the dashboard name and visibility if you want to share the dashboard with other Business Manager admins.

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Once you create a dashboard, it's blank and you can add any charts by clicking [+ Create Chart] on the right top in the dashboard.

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Total Reads by IA

Click [+ Create Chart] and set a chart name of your choice. Select KPI for the chart type. Then select Content View by clicking [Select Event] dropdown to extract the number of all ViewContent events.

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Click [+ Add Filter] button in Filters form, and

  • Click [Create new filter]
  • Click [people] and change it to events
  • Click [used a particular app or device][Channel]
  • Click [is]
  • Click Instant Articles
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This shows the number of unique viewers with Instant Articles in last 28 days. If you want to see the number of reads instead of the number of unique viewers, you can select Number of Views by clicking Unique Viewers

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Total Reads by Mobile Web with Facebook App

Similar to the Total Reads by IA chart above, you can also create a KPI chart for views on mobile web under facebook app. The filter would be:

  • data to the condition: Browser Version Contains Facebook for
  • people who meet the condition: Channel is not Instant Articles

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Readership Funnel

Click [+ Create Chart] and put the chart name and select Funnel for the chart type.

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Then add Content View event into the funnel to see how the ViewContent event drops in the reader funnel.

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If you click the [by Overall] link, you can select Channel as a breakdown dimension for the funnel, which would show how many views happens on Instant Article and how many on Web including both mobile web and desktop traffic.

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Finally you can also filter the data to include only mobile traffics, you can set the segment filter by:

  • Click [+ Add Filter] in the Filters form
  • Click [Create new filter]
  • Click [people] and change it to data
  • Click [used a particular app or device][Browser Version]
  • Click [Contains]
  • Type Facebook for

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This filter condition updates the funnel include only data from Instant Articles and mobile web via Facebook in-app browser. You can now save the chart by clicking [Save & Go to dashboard]

Create Conversion Dashboard

Similar to the total reads filtered by IA, you can filter the data to focus on Subscribe events. The Subscribe event itself always happens on a pixel so you can see the differences between people who see Instant Articles and people who don't see Instant Articles but sign up within the Facebook app in-app browser. You can also see the conversion funnel metrics from paywall to subscribe on iOS and Android separately.

Unique Subscriptions by IA

Click [+ Create Chart] and put the chart name and select KPI for the chart type, select Subscribe by clicking [Select Event] dropdown to extract the number of all Subscribe events, apply the filter where:

  • data to the condition: Browser Version Contains Facebook for (to show only data by Facebook in-app browser)
  • people who meet the condition: Channel is Instant Articles
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Unique Subscriptions by Mobile Web With Facebook App

Click [+ Create Chart] and put the chart name and select KPI for the chart type, select Subscribe by clicking [Select Event] dropdown to extract the number of all Subscribe events, apply the filter where:

  • data to the condition: Browser Version Contains Facebook for (to show only data by Facebook in-app browser)
  • people who meet the condition: Channel is not Instant Articles
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Conversion Funnel for iOS

Click [+ Create Chart] and put the chart name and select Funnel for the chart type. Then add ViewPaywall event into the funnel, click Refine to set the surface parameter filter not to include ViewPaywall events triggered not by Instant Articles.

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Note: On iOS, you must log a surface parameter along with ViewPaywall events to detect if the paywall is triggered by Instant Articles or not.

Then add InitiatedCheckout and Subscribe in the funnel.

Finally add a data filter to the condition: Browser Version Contains Facebook for to include only events triggered by Facebook's in-app browser. The funnel configuration looks like as follows.

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This funnel shows how many users saw paywalls trigged by Instant Articles on iOS, then wen through the checkout flow to complete after seeing a paywall in the Facebook app. Please note that the checkout flow does not need to be completed in the same session as the one that shows paywall. It would include user behaviors like follows.

  • View Paywall triggered by Instant Articles.
  • View Paywall triggered by non Instant Articles.
  • Go to the checkout flow
  • Complete the flow
If you want to filter the conversion flow directly from Instant Articles, you can make the funnel completion time window shorter by clicking Anytime and selecting a narrow window like 30 minutes.

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Conversion Funnel for Android

Android sends the Instant Articles specific events named fb_instant_articles_paywall_view, which you can use instead of ViewPaywall parameter on iOS.

To create the Android conversion funnel chart, click [+ Create Chart] and put the chart name and select Funnel for the chart type. Add the fb_instant_articles_paywall_view event, InitiatedCheckout and Subscribe in the funnel, then add a data filter to the condition: Browser Version Contains Facebook for to include only events triggered by Facebook's in-app browser. The funnel configuration looks like as follows.

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