Facebook makes some changes, offers more transparency about where traffic comes from


Facebook announced some new tools and improvements on Wednesday in response to conversations the company has had with both big and small news organizations, a Facebook spokesperson tells Poynter.

The three new publishing tools will allow publishers to reach people based on other things they've liked, put a post-end date to posts that can go stale and identify stories doing well on Facebook.

There are also, the announcement notes, some improvements that will help media companies better understand where traffic is coming from:

Accurate and actionable analytics are critical for media organizations to understand and optimize how their content is performing on Facebook. We’ve made a variety of improvements to Domain Insights to show how Pages and social plugins drive traffic to websites.

We’ve added a new “Top URLs” section, which displays URL-level reporting and shows when other Pages and influencers reshare your content. For example, if a high-profile public figure reshares one of your posts, you’ll know why that post may have reached more people than other posts.

More on the new tools:

-- With Interest Targeting, "we now offer the ability to target posts to a subset of the people that like your Page," according to an announcement from the company. So, for instance, readers who have liked Poynter's page and ESPN's page would be interest targeted if Poynter wrote an ESPN story and shared it on Facebook.

-- Post End Date "prevents people from seeing out-of-date posts in News Feed, but posts will continue to appear on your Page. For instance, a publisher can use this to remove yesterday’s weather report from News Feed."

-- And Smart Publishing "identifies and publishes stories that are popular with people on Facebook."

Interest Targeting and End Date are now available on desktop, and Smart Publishing is currently being used by some media organizations and should be more widely available soon, according to Facebook.


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