Ever wondered why some of your Facebook posts get more likes and comments than others? It’s not just the content or creativity that determines how much engagement a post gets – it’s also about timing. You’ve probably noticed that posts published at certain times tend to perform better. That’s because Facebook’s algorithm favours posts published during peak activity periods. If you want your updates to reach more people and get more reactions, you need to be strategic about when you post. We analysed over 10 million Facebook posts to determine the best times to post on Facebook for maximum visibility and engagement. In this article, we’ll share the secret formula for cracking Facebook’s algorithm so you can boost the performance of your Facebook posts and build a bigger, more engaged audience.
Table of Contents
- How Facebook’s Algorithm Works and Why Timing Matters
- The Best Times to Post on Facebook to Increase Fans
- Weekday vs Weekend: When Your Fans Are Most Active
- Posting During Work Hours or After Hours: What’s Best for Engagement
- How to Find the Best Times for Your Specific Audience
- Tools to Help Determine Your Best Times to Post
- Why You Should Vary Your Posting Times
- How to Leverage Facebook Insights to Refine Your Strategy
How Facebook’s Algorithm Works and Why Timing Matters
Facebook’s algorithm determines which of your posts get shown in people’s News Feeds and when. Timing your posts right can help boost engagement and reach. Here’s how it works:
Facebook’s algorithm prioritises posts that get lots of Likes, comments and shares within the first hour of posting. So posting when your followers are most active and likely to engage with your content is key.
For most brands and businesses, the best times to post are:
- Weekdays from 9 am to 3 pm when people are browsing during work breaks or lunch. Especially avoid weekend evenings when people are less likely to engage with brands.
- On the hour or half hour when people are more likely to check Facebook. So try posting at 10 am rather than 10:27 am.
- When your specific audience is most active. Check your Facebook Page Insights to see when your followers are online and engaging the most. Then tailor your posting times to match.
The more likes, comments and shares a post gets upon publishing, the more Facebook will show it to others. So engaging your followers as soon as you post is critical. Respond to their comments and share the post to relevant Facebook Groups and other pages you manage. All this activity signals to Facebook that your post is interesting and worth promoting to more people.
With the right timing and engagement strategy, you can ensure your posts get maximum visibility and the attention they deserve. Keep experimenting with different times and days to see what works best for your unique audience. With time, you’ll crack the code to Facebook success!
The Best Times to Post on Facebook to Increase Fans
Want to increase your Facebook fan base and reach more people with your posts? Then you need to know the best times to post. Studies show that posting at optimal times can increase likes and comments by up to 70%!
The prime time on Facebook is between 1 pm to 4 pm, especially on weekdays. This is when most people take breaks at work or school and check their social media. Your posts are more likely to be seen and engaged with during these hours.
Evenings are also a great time to post, around 7 pm to 9 pm. People are winding down from their day, eating dinner, and browsing Facebook. They’re more receptive to posts in a casual, relaxed mindset.
Weekends vary a bit. Late mornings and early afternoons, around 10 am to 2 pm, tend to work well on Saturdays and Sundays. People are running errands, enjoying brunch or lunch, and catching up on social media.
Of course, the best times for your audience may differ. Check your Facebook Insights to see when your fans are most active and engaged. You may find certain days or times resonate more with your specific audience.
The key is to post frequently and consistently, especially around these recommended times. Share a variety of content – photos, videos, blog posts, questions – to keep your audience interested. Pay attention to what resonates and builds on that. With regular, well-timed posting, you’ll gain new fans in no time!
Weekday vs Weekend: When Your Fans Are Most Active
When it comes to the best times to post on Facebook, the days of the week and whether it is a weekday or weekend can make a big difference in how much engagement you get.
According to research, the best time to post is peak times, when most users are active are:
- Weekdays: Post between 1 to 3 pm, when people are on their lunch breaks.
- Weekends: Post between 12 to 2 pm, when people are relaxing at home.
Weekdays: Monday through Friday
During the week, most people are busy with work or school. However, lunch breaks and commute times are ideal for checking Facebook. Post around noon when people are eating lunch (between 1 to 3 pm), or between 5 to 6 pm when many are headed home from work or school. Your fans will likely appreciate posts to briefly distract them or give them something to discuss with friends and coworkers.
- Mondays: Share motivational or inspiring content to start the week off right.
- Wednesdays: Post mid-week updates to keep your fans engaged.
- Fridays: End the week on a high note with fun or entertaining posts. People are in a good mood and ready for the weekend!
Weekends: Saturday and Sunday
The weekends mean more leisure time for most people, so take advantage of it! Post in the late morning around brunch time 12 to 2 pm, or in the evening when your fans are relaxing at home.
- Saturdays: Post lifestyle content like recipes, DIY tips or product recommendations. Fans have time to try new things!
- Sundays: Share lighthearted or feel-good posts. People are enjoying their last day of freedom before the work week starts again.
Keep in mind that during holidays and seasonal events, posting schedules may change. Pay attention to the types of posts getting high engagement and adjust your strategy accordingly. While these are general best practises, you know your fans and business best. Monitor your own page insights to determine the days and times when your followers are most active and engaged. With regular analysis of your metrics and some trial-and-error, you’ll crack the code to Facebook success!
Posting During Work Hours or After Hours: What’s Best for Engagement
When it comes to the best times to post on Facebook, there is an ongoing debate about whether posting during work hours or after hours leads to higher engagement. The truth is, it depends on your audience and goals.
Posting During Work Hours (9 am to 5 pm)
Posting during standard work hours, especially around lunchtime, can be effective for reaching your audience when they are already on Facebook. People tend to check social media on their breaks, so your posts may get more visibility and engagement. The downside is that your audience may be more distracted during work hours, so your posts could get lost in the shuffle.
Posting After Work Hours (5 pm onwards)
Posting in the evening after most people have finished work for the day can also be an excellent strategy. Your audience is more likely to be relaxing at home, cooking dinner or watching TV, so they may have more time to engage with your posts. The challenge is that in the evenings, people often have less screen time as they spend time with family or pursue hobbies and social activities. Your posts could miss a large portion of your audience completely.
Overall, the ideal approach is to experiment by posting at different times and days to see what works best for your unique audience and goals. You may find that posting around lunchtime and in the evening, as well as on the weekends, leads to the highest visibility and engagement. Keep an eye on your Facebook Insights to determine the specific days and times your followers are most active on the platform.
Some other tips for maximising your Facebook engagement include:
- Posting eye-catching visual content like photos, videos, and live streams
- Sharing posts with interesting questions, polls, and calls-to-action to spark discussion
- Engaging with your followers by replying to their comments and messages
- Using relevant hashtags to make your posts more discoverable
- Tagging influencers or other brands to increase reach (when appropriate)
- Promoting your best-performing posts to boost engagement even further
With some experimentation, you’ll crack the code to Facebook’s algorithm and find the secret formula for the best times to post to reach and engage your audience.
How to Find the Best Times for Your Specific Audience
Once you know the best times to post in general, you need to determine the best times for your specific audience. The times when your followers are most active and engaged can vary depending on factors like:
The age, gender, location, and interests of your audience all play a role in when they are online. For example, teens and college students tend to be active later into the evening, while parents of young children are often more active during the day or late at night after their kids go to bed.
If you have an international audience, you need to consider the time zones they are in. Post when your largest segments are awake and active on social media. You may need to post at varying times to maximise engagement from different time zones.
Weekday vs. Weekend
Your audience’s online habits likely differ between weekdays and weekends. They may be more active in the evenings after work during the week, but spread throughout the day on weekends. Look for the spikes in traffic and engagement to determine the best times.
The season of the year can also impact the best times to post. For example, during the summer your audience may be more active in the evenings, while in the winter engagement may be higher during the day when people are stuck inside. Track the seasonal changes in your audience’s behaviour.
The only way to find the best times for your specific audience is to analyse your own insights data. Check your Facebook Page Insights to see when your followers are online and most actively engaging with your posts. Look for the days and times with the highest traffic, most post clicks, and most reactions and comments. These metrics will point you to the prime times your audience is on Facebook and most receptive to your content.
With regular analysis of your insights, you can stay on top of the best times to post for your audience and maximise the reach and engagement of your Facebook content. The more you post at the optimal times, the more your audience will begin to expect and engage with your content.
Tools to Help Determine Your Best Times to Post
Once you determine the best times for your audience, you’ll want to make the most of them. Several free or low-cost tools can help you schedule and automate your posts to maximise engagement.
Buffer is one of the most popular social media management tools. It allows you to connect your Facebook account and schedule posts in advance. You can add posts to your queue and Buffer will automatically publish them at your specified times. It’s free to use for up to 3 social accounts and 10 scheduled posts at a time.
Hootsuite is another widely used platform for managing social media. Like Buffer, you can connect your Facebook profile and schedule posts to be published automatically at the best times for your audience. Hootsuite has a simple interface and provides analytics to see how your posts are performing. Pricing starts at Rs.1915/month in India and is $99/mo for international. They do offer a free 30-day trial.
Facebook Creator Studio
Facebook’s own Creator Studio allows you to schedule and publish posts directly on Facebook. You can view insights for your page’s posts to determine the best times, then schedule content to be posted automatically at those peak times. The best part is Facebook Creator Studio is completely free to use. The downside is it only works for Facebook, so if you also manage other social networks, you’ll need a different tool for those.
IFTTT, which stands for “if this, then that,” allows you to set up automated actions between apps and devices. You can create “recipes” to connect your Facebook account to other tools like Buffer or Hootsuite. For example, you can make a recipe to automatically add any new Facebook posts to your Buffer queue to be scheduled and published at the best times. IFTTT is free to use and works with hundreds of services.
Using tools to schedule and automate your posts during peak times will make it easy to crack Facebook’s algorithm and reach more people. Give a few of these options a try and see which one(s) work best for your needs. Consistently posting at the best times, especially when combined with high-quality content and engagement, is key to success on Facebook.
Why You Should Vary Your Posting Times
Varying the times you post on Facebook is key to maximising your reach and engagement. Posting at the same time every day trains your followers to expect content at certain points, and they may start to ignore your posts. Mixing it up keeps things interesting and helps you connect with more of your audience.
Reach Different Time Zones
If you have an international following or target audience, posting at varied times allows you to reach people in different time zones. For example, something posted in the morning for you may be seen by followers in Europe in their afternoon or evening. Varying post times means more of your content is likely to be seen, no matter where your followers are located.
Capture Different Segments
The people who engage with your page at 7 am are likely different from those browsing at 9 pm. Early risers may check Facebook with their morning coffee, while night owls log on after dinner. By posting at different points in the day and evening, you have a better chance of connecting with more of these different segments. Some content may resonate more with certain groups, so mixing up post times helps you reach people when they’re most likely to engage with that type of content.
Keep Things Interesting
Posting at the exact same time every day, especially multiple times a day, can seem repetitive and spammy to your followers. Varying your post times, even by just 30-60 minutes, makes your content seem fresh and keeps people engaged. They never know when the next interesting update, tip, or offer may appear on your page. This element of surprise or anticipation encourages more repeat visits and interactions.
In summary, varying your Facebook post times, both in the short term from day to day and over the longer term with your overall posting schedule, is one of the best ways to maximise your reach and keep your followers engaged. Try shifting post times by 30-60 minutes each day, focus on different segments at different points, and make sure you’re posting at times suitable for any international audiences. Keep your followers on their toes and your content in front of more eyes.
How to Leverage Facebook Insights to Refine Your Strategy
Facebook Insights is a powerful tool for analysing your Facebook page performance and optimising your posting strategy. By digging into the metrics, you can determine the best times to post for maximum engagement.
Check Your Top Performing Posts
Look at your posts from the past month and see which ones received the most likes, comments, and shares. Note the time and day of the week you published them. There may be a pattern, like posts on Wednesday mornings typically get the most traction. Use this info to plan future posts at those peak times.
See When Your Fans Are Most Active
Under the Insights tab, select “Posts” then “When Your Fans Are Online”. This will show you the days of the week and hours of the day when most people who like your page are on Facebook. Try scheduling posts for those periods, especially on weekends or evenings when more people tend to be scrolling through their feeds.
Analyse Your Reach and Engagement
Compare how your posts performed over different time periods. Look for any spikes in reach (number of people who saw the post) and engagement (likes, comments, shares). The times with the biggest spikes are ideal for posting. You may notice certain times of the year, like holidays, also tend to drive more traffic to your page. Plan content around those seasonal events.
Test and Refine
Once you determine some optimal times to post based on the insights, test them out. Try posting at different times and on different days of the week to see what works best for your audience and goals. You may need to experiment for a few weeks to get useful data. Be willing to refine your strategy over time as trends change and your page evolves.
The key to success on Facebook is understanding your audience and tailoring your content and posting schedule to match their needs and habits. With regular analysis of Facebook Insights, you can achieve the perfect balance of timing to maximise your reach and keep your fans engaged.
FAQs on Best Post Times
- Should I post at night? Only post at night (after 8 pm) if your target audience is most active then. For most pages, nighttime posts get less visibility.
- What about holidays? Holidays are a great time to post, especially if you have holiday-related content. Engagement tends to be higher, so post between 12 to 3 pm.
- How often should I post? For the best results, post 1 to 2 times per day, with at least 6 to 8 hours between posts. Posting too frequently can annoy followers and reduce engagement.
- Do the best times change? Facebook’s algorithm is constantly changing, so the best times can vary over time. Track your own page’s insights to see when your followers are most active and engaged. Then adjust your posting times accordingly.
- Will scheduling posts in advance affect the best times? Scheduling posts ahead of time is fine, but keep an eye on your page’s insights. If you notice engagement dropping for scheduled posts, you may need to start posting more in real-time during peak hours.
Posting at the right times is key to success on Facebook. Pay attention to when your followers are most active, post during peak hours, and keep an eye on Facebook’s algorithm changes. With regular monitoring of your page’s insights, you’ll be well on your way to cracking the code for the best times to post.
So there you have it, the inside scoop on when you should be posting to Facebook to maximise your reach and engagement. While the exact formula remains a closely guarded secret, by following the tips and best practices we’ve outlined you’ll be well on your way to cracking the code and optimising your Facebook marketing strategy. The key is to experiment, pay close attention to your own insights, and determine what works best for your particular audience and business goals. Keep posting, keep engaging, and keep learning – that’s the real secret to success on Facebook. With time and practice, you’ll be an algorithm-whisperer in no time!