You’ve created a brilliant content strategy that has great posts to share on social media. It’s full of compelling tidbits, news, information and high-value posts that will attract new customers and bring existing customers back.
Now the question is: When should you post the content on Facebook?
Why Does Facebook Post Timing Matter?
Analysts are constantly trying to discern the algorithms Facebook uses for content sharing on one’s stream. If you’re not using paid advertising on Facebook, then it can become a bit of a guessing game to determine when to put your content out in the open.
Facebook does appear to favor posts by friends and family, making it more challenging for organic business posts to be seen. One study of 43 million posts by the top 20,000 brands found that there had been a 50 percent drop in engagement (measured in likes, shares, comments and reactions) from the start of 2017 to the middle of 2018.
With more than 80 million business pages on the platform, that’s a lot of noise to fight against to get your content seen.
What can you do to determine the best time to post on Facebook? Part of the challenge is the various recommendations afloat on the web. Consider the various time recommendations below:
- 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday (Sprout Social)
- 9 a.m., 11 a.m. to 12 noon with Thursday and Sunday the best days (HubSpot)
- 8 p.m. on Thursday (TrackMaven)
Here’s a closer look at the logic behind the selected dates for several of the studies noted above.
Sprout Social. While the Wednesday times were among the most optimal, there are other factors. Broadly, the most regular engagement occurs Tuesdays to Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., with much lower engagement on the weekends, before 7 a.m. and after 5 p.m.
HubSpot. The early morning and midday times are when people first arrive in the office or are about to break for lunch.
What Are the Suggested Best Times by Sector?
Many of these studies break down the optimal times by industry or demographic. Here’s a look at some sector breakdowns.
Best Times to Post on Facebook for B2C
According to CoSchedule, the best times to post are when workers typically have breaks or are at the end of their day – 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., 11 a.m. to 12 noon and 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sprout Social recommends posting on Wednesdays at 1 p.m. and Friday at 11 a.m.
Best Times to Post on Facebook for B2B
CoSchedule recommends posting at 9 a.m. or 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Here are some of the best times for specific industries, according to Sprout Social:
- Education: Wednesday at 9 a.m. or Saturday at 5 p.m.
- Finance: Wednesday at 12 noon
- Healthcare: Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 12 noon
- Media: Tuesday through Thursday at 9 a.m. or Friday from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.
- Nonprofits: Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.
- Recreation: Tuesday at 2 p.m., Wednesday at 1 p.m. and Friday at 11 a.m.
- Technology: Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 12 noon
What Is Facebook Audience Insights?
Facebook offers users a powerful tool to use in determining the right time to post. Audience Insights is a free tool to provide you actionable intelligence about your audience, prospects or all of Facebook. It is typically used to target ad buys on the platform, but can also be used to understand better when to launch content.
You can select from three options for audience – everyone on Facebook, people connected to your page or a custom audience. You can also set various demographic criteria, including age, gender, location, language, relationships, education, market segments and interests.
One of the best features of Facebook Audience Insights is its Relevance and Affinity measures. Relevance shows you the Facebook pages relevant to your chosen audience based on page size, affinity and people in your audience who already like a page. The Affinity measure indicates how likely an audience is to like a page compared to the entirety of Facebook users.
There’s also Facebook Insights, which can give you information about your posts. You access the feature at the top of your Business page. You can look when your page’s fans are online and which of your posts are the most successful.
What Social Media Platforms Can My Business Use to Manage Facebook Posts?
There are plenty of options for businesses looking to automate your Facebook posting calendar. Each of these platforms allows you to schedule times, provides analysis and metrics, and simplifies your content management strategy. Here is a look at a few of the most popular:
- Buffer. Buffer automates your social posting by adding content to a queue. The tool posts at times you predetermine. The paid version of the service includes analytics.
- Hootsuite. One of the oldest social media management platforms, Hootsuite includes scheduling options and content curation, allowing you to tag and search for content to use across media and streams while managing usage across teams. The tool also tracks social conversations about your content.
- Loomly. Started in 2015, this site offers automated publishing, collaboration tools and multi-account management. It simplifies workflows and provides more structure via a strong social media calendaring solution.
- PromoRepublic. This tool will recommend a posting schedule and suggest content for each social media platform using an artificial intelligence tool that analyzes your audience’s engagement patterns.
How Can I Determine the Best Times to Post on Facebook?
There is clearly no one definitive answer on when to post to Facebook. The optimal time depends on the audience you’re seeking to attract and engage, the content you’re using and the industry you’re in.
Here are a couple of recommendations.
1. Use the Data to Inform Your Decisions
Facebook data and information you glean from a posting platform are plentiful. It’s best to understand your own audience demographics and how your content performs to inform future posting times.
2. Timing Is Everything. Relevance Matters
Sports teams don’t wait to post boxscores. News outlets share breaking news as fast as possible.
You will likely be guided by when you think it’s most relevant. Some content only matters when it’s posted in a timely manner. New product announcements, sales, timing with ad campaigns in other media all should inform when you post. Don’t be afraid to experiment and track the results … giving you more data.
Facebook is a powerful medium, enabling your business to attract customers, fans and followers. Using insights, data and tools can give your business the intel to help create and schedule content to have the greatest impact.