Like most online advertisers, Facebook’s main way of charging ad clients is per click (referred to as CPC in the ad industry). Until today, Facebook had charged the same CPC rate to clicks that linked to both external websites and apps as well as onsite actions such as Likes, Shares, and Comments.
This will change today as the company announced that they are updating the definition of CPC to only account for “link clicks”. These clicks will only apply to ad objectives like clicks to visit another site or install an third-party app.
The company says this update is intended to help advertisers better understand how their ads are performing against certain objectives. While advertisers will of course still be able to buy clicks for Likes, Shares, and Comments, it will now be through a separate optimization goal.
This update makes sense, as offsite clicks are very different from when a user simply “likes” something on Facebook.
The move could allow Facebook to begin charging more for clicks to an external site, where it can’t show more ads. Inversely, Facebook could also now charge less for onsite actions, since users will keep bouncing around on the site leaving monetization options open for Facebook.
Facebook is built to be a mousetrap for your time. Now it’s set up to be able to charge advertisers more to let you escape.