YouTube is not the only source of videos today. Facebook also has video content from its billion users. And these videos are getting a lot of views. If you are a business or brand, and your Facebook video gets lots of views, then it is a good proof of your brand’s credibility.

But, are people really watching Facebook Videos or is it just the autoplay? How credible are the Facebook Video views?

What Are Facebook Video Views?

The first thing we need to understand is what are Facebook Video views.

Is Facebook video views the same with YouTube views? Do you need to reach a certain time to be able for the view to be counted? So far no one really gives Facebook video views a meaning.

On the other hand, we must understand Facebook’s “10 Second views” count. It counts people who have watched for more than 10 seconds. So if a video auto-plays, it counts as one view, and another count if it reaches beyond the 10-second mark.

That is why, when you look at your Facebook video reporting you will see a different number of the “10-second view” mark and the total number of views.

So if you have a 1-hour video, no one really cares if someone only watched it for 10 seconds.

Are Facebook Video Views Real?

A study made by Wochit shows that there has been a decline in Facebook video views since the end of 2017. This is after Facebook announced its news feed algorithm change.

So with this, it is important to understand the reports that Facebook is giving us.

Scott Ayres from Agorapulse.com created a social media experiment about the topic of “are people watching Facebook videos?”

The videos used in the experiment were posted 100% naturally as normal users will do.

Twenty (20) videos were used and are a combination of life and uploaded videos. There were also 3 Facebook pages that were used.

  1. Agorapulse – the main Facebook page of Scott
  2. Geeks Life – a Facebook page that reviews tech products. It also talks about food, life, video games, movies, etc. on the sideline.
  3. Live Streaming Pros – run by Luria Petrucci along with David Foster, who also runs Geeks Life. On this page, they only publish Facebook live videos, since their page is a live streaming page. They also give courses on how to do live videos and set up video studios.

The metrics used on the 20 videos are Video Views, Unique Views and Percentage of users with Sound On.

Comparing the Video Views versus that Unique Views aim to compare the number of users who watched the videos more than once.

The study also wanted to find out the number of users who actually watch with the sound on. Why? The study wanted to know if having a video sound matter in watching an uploaded and live video.

Here are the results of the experiment showing the average results for the 3 metrics:

Facebook Page
Video views
Unique Viewers
Percentage with sound on
Agorapulse
324.95
307.70
15.70%
Geeks Life
248.25
226.80
27.75%
Live Streaming Pros
1131.05
1030.15
40.60%

Here is also the breakdown of results of the uploaded and live videos

Type of video
Video views
Unique Viewers
Percentage with sound on
Uploaded
203.58
190.77
Live Streaming Pros: 18.27%

Geeks Life- 23.0%

Agorapulse- 13.46%

Facebook Live
670.87
616.24
Live Streaming Pros: 32.30%

Geeks Life- 36.43%

Agorapulse- 19.86%

And the average of all the Facebook pages and videos combined are – video views 568.08, unique views 521.55, and percentage with sound on 28.02%.

The experiment got really good numbers. But what are they actually telling us?

First, the amount of people who watched Facebook Live videos that turned on the sound has doubled to 32.30% from 18.27%. This means that 32.30% of people are truly watching live videos.

Turning on sound means that the viewers would like to interact with the uploader or the person broadcasting the live video. On the other hand, people will not turn on the sound, if they are not interested or the video appears on the surface as a marketing video.

The numbers gathered in the experiment seems inflated on every page and videos. This means, Facebook is counting views, whether people are watching or not, as long as it is playing. Facebook is also counting the views, whether the user watched it twice or turned on the sound.

Based also on the views versus unique views experiment, which has a result of 568.08 views and 521.55 unique viewers, it shows that no one really cares if the video was seen more than once.

What We Get From The Experiment

In the end, the experiment was able to find out that the real amount of Facebook users really watching the video is just 50% of the total views from Facebook reports.

Also, with 28.02% of people turning on the sound, they are really the only people that truly watched the videos. This data is especially true when it comes to Facebook live videos which require listening.

In the end, it is not right to get excited about the hundred or thousand views that you get on your Facebook videos. Because the real number of viewers is lesser than that.

If we know the real number of our viewers, we will be able to know how the video is performing. We may get a hundred views, but few of them are only really interested in our content.

If you want to know the real numbers on your Facebook video views, look at the percentage of people turning on the sound as well as the average watch time. You can get this data by going on your Facebook page insights section.

You may also do your own experiment on your own videos to see if you get the same result. In the end, it is really hard to gauge if Facebook videos are a really good marketing tool. But if you consider it, Facebook videos are still content that adds up to your searchability online.


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