Facebook Insight API: Developer guide on how use Insight API

In this post, discover how over 3 million websites are leveraging the Facebook Insights API to optimize their Facebook campaigns. Gain insights into its functionalities, key features, and capabilities, including reach, engagement, audience demographics, and more. Learn about the benefits of using the API, best practices, and how Phyllo API simplifies data normalization and integration for enhanced marketing strategies.

Table of Content

Over 3 million websites are actively leveraging Facebook Insight API to gain page insights to optimize their Facebook campaigns. From fetching page visitors to collecting data on ad performance, Facebook Insight API is your all-in-one solution. However, unless you understand its wide functionalities along with challenges involved, you can’t expect to use the API to its full potential. 

What is Facebook Insights API? 

The Facebook Insights API is a valuable tool for developers to extract valuable metrics from your Facebook pages. It allows your apps to collect the same data you see in the Facebook Insights dashboard such as, reach, engagement, impressions, reactions, views, ad breaks, and audience demographics. 

Key Features and Capabilities 

Facebook Insights API provides valuable data for businesses and creators to understand the audience and refine marketing strategy for a competitive edge. Let’s take a look at some of the valuable features and how to leverage them for marketing success. 

Reach and Engagement 

The API shows how much people have reached your page and how they are engaging with your content through following metrics: 


This metric shows the number of unique visitors (organic and paid) who saw your posts for the first time. 


The API also shows all kinds of visitor interactions with your content including likes, comments, shares, and clicks. These metrics show how well your content is appreciated by your audience. 


Know how many likes came from people who saw: 

  • Ads
  • News feed
  • Page suggestions
  • Reactivated Facebook accounts 
  • Search results 
  • Page visitors 


It shows how many times your content appeared on users’ screens against any query or by default. This data does not include audience interactions with the content. 

Video Views: 

Analyze how well your video content performs by tracking views at specific durations. For instance, you can analyze the number of times 

  • non-promoted videos played for at least 3 secs/10 secs/30 secs/1 minute
  • Promoted videos played for at least 3 secs/10 secs/30 secs/1 minute 
  • Videos played automatically for at least 3 secs/10 secs/30 secs/1 minute 

Follower Growth:

Monitor the number of followers your page gains per day with this metric. 

Audience Demographics and Behaviors 

Facebook Insights goes beyond basic metrics. It also offers valuable insights into your audience demographics. 


Understand which age groups are most engaged with your content.


Identify the geographic location of your audience, including countries, states, and cities to tailor content accordingly. 

Page Fans:

The total number of fans who have liked your page. 


The language (as per default language setting on Facebook) of fans who have liked your page. 


This shows the number of fans who have unliked your page over a selected period of time. 

Benefits of Using Facebook Insights API 

Let’s learn how to leverage the Facebook Insights API to gain a deeper understanding of your audience and optimize your Facebook strategy. 

Automated Data Extraction and Analysis

The API can automatically pull data into your own custom dashboard or marketing tools. This eliminates manual analysis and human errors. Additionally, you save valuable productive hours to focus on making other strategic decisions.

Granular Data Exploration

Through the Facebook Insights API, you get programmatic access to a wider range of data points compared to the standard interface. For instance, you analyze video views at different durations, such as 3 sec, 30 secs, and 1 minute. This granular level of details helps you tailor your content for better performance. 

Advanced Reporting and Customization 

The API gives you the flexibility to create custom reports based on your specific needs. This can help you analyze specific content initiatives or track the performance of paid advertisement campaigns. For instance, you can combine Facebook data with data from Instagram or Google Ads to gain a holistic view of your marketing efforts. 

Streamlined Workflows and Integrations 

Facebook has made sure that its API seamlessly integrates with major marketing tools and workflows. You can integrate Facebook data with your CRM or marketing automation platform to get a unified customer view. As you eliminate data silos, you feel more confident to make informed marketing decisions. 

Competitive Benchmarking at Scale 

It’s not just about simply viewing the metrics. You can compare them against the standard industry benchmarks. For instance, when you see the average click through rate on your Facebook ads is less than 1.4% industry benchmark, you get the clarity to focus on editing the ad rather than increasing your ad budget. 

Beauty of Real-time Data 

The API fetches you performance data in real-time. If you’re running a Facebook ad to promote a show for tomorrow to increase ticket bookings, the performance of each hour counts. When you get real-time data for your campaign performance, you also receive suggestions on industry trends to adjust your strategy on the fly. This puts you in a better position to capitalize on opportunities and increase your ROI with ease. 

Accessing and Integrating Facebook Insights API (450)

To get started, you need a Facebook application and Facebook developer account. 

Step 1: Create Facebook Developer Account 

The first step is to register as a Facebook developer. Head over to the Facebook Developer portal and create an account. 

Step 2: Open the Graph Explorer Tool 

Open the Graph Explorer tool in the new window where you can see the loaded default query with the get method. You will also see the ID and name fields at the top of the page. 

Step 3: Get Your Access Token 

Click the ‘Generate access token’ button present at the top right corner of the page. Now, you will be directed to the Facebook login page. Once you login and click on the ‘Continue as..’ button, you will receive a user access token. It will contain valuable data such as app requests, time, validity, and other necessary information. 

Step 4: Submit the Request 

Click on the ‘Submit’ button and you will get a JSON response window with your user ID and name. If you need further access tokens, you can repeat step 3. 

Step 5: Understand API Endpoints

The Facebook Insights API utilizes a system of endpoints. These are specific URLs that return different data sets. 

Step 6: Make Request to Facebook API 

Before making a request, choose a programming language like Python, PHP, or Java to write a code for interacting with the API. Follow the Facebook API documentation to write a code and use credentials to authenticate with the API. The code will then specify the desired endpoint and retrieve the Facebook Insight data you require. 

It is worth remembering that Facebook API access might require review and approval depending on the type of data you’re requesting. Therefore, it is imperative to stay updated on the API policies to ensure your code adheres to their guidelines. 

Best Practices for Maximizing Facebook Insights API 

Here are some best practices to consider along with the challenges you might encounter while working on Facebook Insights APIs. 

Define your goals

Clearly identify what you want to achieve with the API. For instance, define whether you want to automate reporting, gain deep insights or track campaign performance for product or service marketing. 

Request only data you need

The API offers vast amounts of data but you should focus on retrieving only specific data points most relevant to your goals. This will reduce the processing time and help you manage overwhelming responses. 

Stay updated on API functionalities

Stay updated on the API functionalities and potential changes. This can be demanding but you can allocate resources to ensure all your code remains stable through ongoing maintenance. 

Mind the Rate Limits 

Facebook Social Graph API from Meta comes with a limited amount of API requests. You can make only 200 API calls per user in 60 minutes. If your calls exceed this limit, it will slow down API performance and your app or website. The primary way to deal with this is to leverage any universal API platform. 

How Phyllo API Helps With Fetching Facebook insights 

Phyllo’s API integration allows you to access real-time data and advanced metrics to drive your Facebook marketing game with ease. Using Facebook API comes with data normalization challenges, demands costly infrastructure, and requires frequent API changes, However, Phyllo universal API streamlines data normalization and saves you money by seamlessly integrating with multiple platforms at once. Phyllo’s extensive network helps you stay up-to-date on frequent API changes without your attention.

With Phyllo’s Facebook API you can: 

  • Verify user data and understand their followers
  • Access their real-time content updates
  • View their audience demographics
  • Gain insights from how their content perform 
  • Understand creator’s earnings
  • Effortlessly create linkage 

If you want to integrate with Facebook and other social media platforms with a single API, schedule a call with us today.

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Vishnu Verma

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