Paid Impressions

Related to organic impressions, paid impressions are one of the impression metrics that tell a story about your digital marketing strategy. We are going to dive into what it means for your conversions, how reflects a given piece of content, and how you can leverage this SEO metric in your social media marketing.


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What are paid impressions?

One fundamental idea to understand is the difference between reach vs. impressions. The former is the total number of unique people who saw your content on the platform. The number of impressions, however, is the number of accounts your content reached the news feed. So, when we talk about paid impressions, we are referring to the success of your Facebook ads, for example, and the total number of times they reached your target audience.

The impression count is one of the important metrics to track, as it helps you on the path to increasing your brand awareness. It will let you know if your marketing campaign is targeting the right people through online advertising, or if you need to modify your social media campaign in order to see a higher total impressions figure on your user’s feed.

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How to calculate paid impressions

Ultimately, paid impressions refer to the total number of times that users saw your content, as opposed to the number of times users engaged with the content, which is more related to the click-through rate. For paid reach, the value is distinguished from organic reach in that it only considers content you paid for, like Facebook ads or other ad campaigns, and therefore is a subcategory of your overall ad reach.

When people talk about calculating this value in their social media analytics, they typically are referring to determining their cost per impression (or CPM—cost per mile). Beyond that, there is a simple graph in the search engine or social media analytics section that will show you your impressions over time.

Paid impressions formula

To calculate your CPM, aka, what you pay for 1,000 impressions with your ad spending, use the following formula:

CPM = (Total campaign spend / Number of impressions) * 1000

What are good paid impressions?

Overall, the average CPM for Facebook posts or Facebook ads across all industries is $11.19, but if we look at the retail, health, and selected other industries, the number drops down to the $1-$2 range.

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What are bad paid impressions?

There is no objective number to indicate bad paid impressions, however since these social media metrics are reliant on your investment in ads, you want to make sure your content marketing methods are working, and you are being served impressions in return across your social networks and social media platforms.

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Paid impressions KPI examples & templates

Your paid impressions can be added to multiple different types of reports. Here are some of them:

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Social media report template Social media report template

Our social media report template has everything you need to get your marketing team started quickly: it’s pre-built with the standard social media metrics and KPIs you need, and it’s fully customizable so that you can visualize the data you want, the way you want. From tweets to Instagram analytics stats and hashtags, you'll be able to track your entire social media performance at a glance.

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Google Ads Dashboard Google Ads Dashboard

You know what KPIs you should be tracking for your client's Google Ads campaigns. So don't make reporting a headache - use our Google Ads dashboard. With preset KPIs, real-time data fetching, and a ton of customization options, what's not to love?

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Community management report template Community management report template

Track all your social media performance, and show your social media strategy results to your boss in no time! Spend less time reporting and more time on growing your community with this all-in-one community management report template.

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Paid impressions best practices

To optimize your paid impressions, here are some of the best practices you should keep in mind:

Pageviews best practices

step 1 icon Increase shareable content

By improving the value of your overall paid content, you have the opportunity to drive social media engagement and the number of unique users who will engage with your ads.

step 2 icon Optimize your keywords

Make sure your post is geared towards the right subject matter. If you are using Google ads, focus on your Adwords.

step 3 icon Make sure you are targeting the right demographics

If you are targeting the wrong audience, you won’t see a high total number of people engaging and you may be wasting your money on your pay-per-click (PPC) value. Make sure that you use google analytics and Facebook analytics to outline the target audience that matches your brand.

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