Facebook, advertisers and the end of a honeymoon

The Ad Contrarian puts a few more numbers around the trouble with Facebook I wrote about a few weeks ago.

Ads on Facebook are very close to invisible. According to IT World the click-through rate for Facebook ads is about 5 in 10,000. That is astonishingly low. According to an unofficial insider at Facebook, the true CTR is 2 in 10,000.

Recently, Facebook has been crowing about an 18% increase in its CTR. Strangely, their press release neglects to give us the raw numbers. Yes, that was sarcasm. An 18% increase from what to what? Heres a tip from an old science teacher — when someone gives you results in percentages but neglects to give you the raw numbers, theyre hiding something.

The numbers for Google, on the other hand, tell a much different story. People spend less than 4% of their online time on Google, but Google attracts (according to my calculations) about 44% of online ad dollars.

To me this is even further reason to suggest that Facebook will go *poof* and all of our aunts and uncles and grandparents will have lost big because we’ve been updating there instead of keeping our own blogs in our own space.

Google continues to prove that the most successful web enterprises tend to send people away. It’s also interesting here that time spent on a site is not an indicator of success—at least not in this context. The measurement is difficult—people spend less time on Google, and yet it wields more influence. Some people have a very small number of followers (or none to speak of) and yield more influence than those with thousands.

 

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