Why Does Facebook Display Too Many Clicks?

You might face some differences in link statistics displayed on Short.cm and Facebook.

Facebook usually shows more clicks than Short.cm, so it looks as if Short.cm has a bug in a link statistics. No, there are no mistakes on both Short.cm and Facebook. It is just different ways the services count clicks.

Let’s learn more detailed about clicks.

For every link in a mobile news feed, Facebook uses the prefetching mode. Facebook downloads mobile content before someone clicks a link (but Facebook counts it as a click).

Using prefetching mode, Facebook tries to predict whether a user would click on a link or not. This content is cached locally on the person's device for a short time. If a user clicks on the ad, Facebook loads the initial page from the cache. The initial page makes a regular web request to the web server to load the remainder of the page.

How prefetching influences traffic.

Prefetching causes a slight increase in web traffic and an increase in clicks for third-party. These increases occur when marketers manually place third-party click tags on the website URL of their ads. Setting the tags may cause the prefetch to redirect to the third party tag, and the prefetch may then get counted as a click.

Short.cm counts clicks when a user is redirected to a destination URL. The Short.cm statistics show a real number of views.

How to cancel prefetching mode.

If you want Facebook to display the correct statistics, contact Short.cm support. Short.cm CEO contacts Facebook to restrict prefetching mode on your domain.

The data about the prefetching mode is taken from Facebook Documentation “Understanding prefetching and how Facebook uses prefetching.”

What did you learn:

  • Facebook prefetching mode.
  • How Facebook counts clicks.
  • Why Short.cm and Facebook have defferent number of clicks?

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