A recent study shows that advertising on the Facebook platform works.

People read the page updates and are likely to notice the targeted ads as well.

This means that if you run a business, you can benefit from having a Facebook page where you can send out updates to your customers and create dialogue.

The study was conducted by the National College of Ireland on behalf of Mulley Communications. 40 people from Ireland participated in the test that used eye-tracking to docuement their online behaviour when using Facebook.

Some of the main results of the study are:

– Top three uses of Facebook were: 1. to interact with friends, 2. chat with friends, and 3. look at news feed
– Users like an average number of 28 pages. Younger users tend to like more pages.
– People have usually liked a page that was recommended to them by their friends
– Users pay more attention to page updates in the news feed rather than adverts on the right-hand side
– 71% of the users looked at ads on their profile page but only 31% of users looked at ads on their news feed.

Check out this heatmap of how that show how people look at Facebook:

The study report contains further data on the concrete results about what activities people do on Facebook, doing status updates, using pages, groups, events and games, sharing video and also contains some suggestions for improvement of the platform. You can download the full study at Mulley Communications (pdf)

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  • Jenny

    I find this interesting, but the study only used 40 people – there are what, 500 million users on Facebook? I hardly think that 40 people represent all 500 million Facebook users…

  • Hi Jenny – you are right, this is of course not entirely representative. But I think that usability tests as this one can always be useful in some degree and at least worth taking into consideration. Thanks for following our blog :-) // Anne

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