Measuring Facebook Ads Performance in Google Analytics

Using Facebook Ads Manager for reporting is great. But when it comes down to business reporting, the attribution model might not be entirely accurate in terms of revenue. Of course, we know how paid social can influence the performance of other channels, so looking at attributed revenue is important. However, this number may be overinflated. So it’s always important to measure both this and last-click revenue for transparency to wider teams.

This is where Google Analytics comes in! Google Analytics can measure how much revenue paid social has driven from a last-click perspective. This allows you to see what campaigns and ads are really performing the best. I.e. how much revenue is being driven by people clicking through ads and buying straight away.

This blog post will point you in the right direction when it comes to GA. From setting up your tracking to talking you through the sections of GA that are the most insightful.

Firstly, Set Up Your Tracking

First things first, you need to ensure your tracking is all set up so it will pull through in Google Analytics accurately. To do this you will need to use something called ‘UTM parameters’. These are essentially tags on the end of the URL that you use on your ad.

When you’re creating an ad in ads manager, there’s a section called ‘URL parameters’. This is where you add your tags! You can copy and paste the below into that section and your performance will begin to pull through into Google Analytics:

utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=paid_social&utm_campaign={{campaign.name}}&utm_content={{ad.name}}

Just make sure within ads manager you differentiate your ads by using different names so that when performance pulls through into GA you will be able to see exactly which ads and which campaigns are driving the best performance!

Measuring Performance

When it comes to GA, there are a lot of different sections to look at. It can be a bit overwhelming for someone who doesn’t know how to use it! But once you know where to look, it’s actually pretty simple to use. Below is a view of the different sections I use on a regular basis for measuring Facebook Ads Performance, and you should use it too!

Acquisition -> Traffic -> Source/Medium

This will allow you to see channel performance with 9 key metrics such as users, sessions, revenue, conversion rate & more.

If you add a ‘secondary dimension’ of either ‘campaign’ or ‘ad content’, you can see these key metrics for the campaigns and ads you are running. You will then be able to see which are driving the highest revenue, or have the highest conversion rate. Which is super useful to see what is performing best from a last-click perspective!

To go one step further; when you have ‘ad content’ as a secondary dimension, you can filter for ad names that contain specific words. Do this by clicking on ‘advanced’ on the top right-hand corner of the table, and add a filter. This is particularly useful if you have consistent naming conventions and can filter to see if certain aspects drive more revenue than others. E.g. you can filter by ‘Image’ and ‘Video’ to see which creative has a higher conversion rate over time. This can then help influence your future creative decisions.

Conversions -> Ecommerce -> Product Performance

If you’re working for an e-commerce brand, this section is useful to look at top-performing products! To see which products are being driven by paid social specifically, you need to add a secondary dimension again for Facebook Ads. This time add ‘source/medium’, then go to ‘advanced’ and filter by ‘Facebook / paid_social’.

I like to use this by looking at MTD top performers and comparing them MoM and YoY. If there are previous top performers that have dropped off over time, use this data to put actions in place. If they were strong performers in the past, it might be worth giving them another push on paid social!

Audience -> Demographics & Interests

I use this section to get to know my audience more and inform my audience targeting within the ads manager. Here you can see the demographics of the whole site and again can filter by source/medium to see the demographics of people who have come through paid social. This allows you to see which demographics drive the highest conversion, and can help you refine your targeting when looking at new Facebook audiences!

Interests also allow you to review affinity interests of the whole site, which again can help to inform you when thinking about future audiences to target within the ads manager.

Behaviour -> Site Content -> Landing pages

Finally, this is one section I like to check every few weeks or so. This helps you review which landing pages are working best! Through this, you can see which landing pages are converting best and driving the highest session duration. As well as being able to see those that are driving the highest number of bounces! This will help inform future campaigns as you review what type of landing pages work best for your performance.

Now Go and Measure Your Facebook Ads Performance!

The thing that helped me most with using Google Analytics was simply playing around with the platform myself. It’s good to know you have more options for tracking your Facebook Ads Performance. Once you begin to use it and understand the metrics, it soon becomes second nature. So if you begin with exploring the sections I mentioned above, then branch out to the rest of the platform, you’ll soon get to grips with it and become an analytics whizz!

Kelly Birnie
Hey, I'm Kelly! I'm currently working as a Senior Paid Media Executive at a global e-commerce company, working in the health & wellness division. I have been working here since I graduated from Lancaster University in 2018, where I studied Business Economics and gained initial industry experience at a leading beauty company. I am obsessed with all things beauty and wellness, and although still quite early in my career, I am very excited to grow in this industry and share the knowledge I have!