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Facebook admits tenth measurement error since September

May 17, 2017 0 Comments

They’ve done it again: Facebook disclosed that it has been charging advertisers incorrectly for “link-based video carousel ads” on their mobile site, primarily affected by smartphone users. Facebook is refunding the affected advertisers in full, with a median amount of $10.

The problem itself is a minor issue, affecting only 0.04 percent of total ad impressions. The bigger issue at stake is the gradual decrease in advertiser’s trust in the social media company; this is, after all, the the tenth measurement mistake the company has made since September last year. Still, it could have been worse.


So why wasn’t this particular error a bigger problem? It only affected the video carousel ads, not the standalone video ads, and those ads running on Facebook’s mobile site. Furthermore, only the ads displayed on smartphones were affected, not on tablets. Finally, the mischarging happened if the ad was clicked. If an advertiser bought an ad based on video views, they weren’t affected; if an advertiser bought an ad that required the viewers to click the link to the advertiser’s site, they were billed for clicks on the video and not the links.

Facebook was counting the wrong clicks, counting clicks to play the ad videos in full-screen as link clicks to the advertiser’s off-Facebook site.

This measurement error is similar to another Facebook slip-up in November 2016, where clicks to expand a photo or video couched in a post that linked to a different site counted as link clicks, even though the consumer never even left Facebook. Oops.

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The DrivingSales News team is dedicated to breaking the relevant and the tough stories affecting car dealers. Have questions for DrivingSales News? Reach the team at news@drivingsales.com.

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