Do people read what they share and like on Facebook?

Chartbeat have been diving deep on the data and the answer is…

Facebook shares and reading time

While there is a small positive correlation between shares and total engagement, the relationship between the two is quite weak. For stories that attracted 1000 shares on Facebook, the Total Engaged Time they earned ranges from around 14 hours to over 1000 days. This tells us that social media interaction and actual reader engagement are not as closely aligned as many tend to think.


It’s clear that just tracking Likes and Shares is not enough to understand the impact of social on your site. You need to related them to reading time, too.

  • IThings Miner

    Yes, sad but I’m totally agree with this point. Achieving reach, likes and shares can’t tell everything. Engagement is the key factor that creates value. Maybe I’m wrong but it seems harder and harder for people to actually read through a news article on social media. And now more and more publisher are moving towards digital strategy like visual storytelling. I actually wrote posts in my personal blog ( commenting about the New York Times’ presence on Snapchat “Discovery” platform, and Twitter’s partnerships with main digital publishers to deliver live streaming news video. How do you think about the collaboration between social media and news publishers and their strategy of focusing on visual news content?

  • Eli Glancy

    This is why I think it is so often times difficult to really understand the actual value of the content that you are posting. Often times we use data analytics and social media monitoring tools to understand what content people are looking at. However, without factoring in something such as reading time it can be very difficult to understand whether or not readers are really comprehending the content you are posting. I also find it pretty sad that readers so seldomly read what they are actually sharing with others.