One picture that sums it up for me is the Insights functionality Facebook can give you:
Facebook Insights Page for ottopress.com
That’s not for my app on Facebook, that’s for clicks on Like/Share buttons on this site, right here. You can drill down further and get clickthrough ratios, likes for individual pages, etc… Along with a whole bunch of other detailed information.
Because the “site” is separate from the “App”, I can get similar stats for likes on my Facebook Page (really an app) and such too.
BTW, if you’re using SFC and haven’t enabled this sort of thing, then it’s really easy to do. You can do the same thing without SFC, it’s just that SFC makes it easy for you by putting all the proper header codes into your page to make it work seamlessly.
I sort of snuck this into Simple Facebook Connect 0.18 for you all.
If you go to http://facebook.com/insights, then one of the new things they have is “Insights for your Domain”. Basically, this lets you hook the Facebook Insights system up to your own domain.
They give you meta info to add to your site so as to define who has control over that site. This lets them know who should be able to see the insights and such.
Well, if you use SFC, that information is already there for you. Just go over to the insights page, put in your domain, then “Link With” your SFC Application. No need to add anything else to your site, the base SFC plugin is adding that fb:app-id meta tag for you automatically (once you’ve configured SFC itself, of course).
Note that you may have to link it a few times before it actually takes. Facebook has to retrieve your webpage to verify the connection, and it seems to time out rather easily. Took me several tries and I kept getting messages like “Bad Domain” and such. But it finally worked.
Since I just added it, I don’t have any data yet to show you, but basically it will keep track of the “Shares” from your site, so those Share buttons will now give you some useful information and feedback on the Insights page.
Additional: Note that since I wrote this post, Insights never actually updated or worked at all. Facebook basically dropped the ball and never actually finished this code or turned it on or something. I seriously wonder exactly WTF they are doing over there sometimes. Anyway, here’s the bug if you want to track it: http://bugs.developers.facebook.com/show_bug.cgi?id=10174