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The unique number of users who were served an ad.

If an ad is shown to John Doe 2x, it served two impressions with a reach of 1.

Reach is a commonly used metric which refers to the number of unique people who see an ad. Reach does not indicate that someone has actually clicked on an ad. There are different types of reach within different major platforms. 

Facebook Reach:

  • Organic reach: number of unique users who saw your unadvertised content in their news feed
  • Paid reach: number of unique users who saw content that’s been paid for, like an ad. This is affected by factors, budgets and audience targeting. 
  • Viral reach: number of unique users who saw your content because someone in their network engaged with it 

Instagram Reach:

The total number of unique accounts that have seen a post or story. Instagram reach is measured very similarly to Facebook reach. 

Twitter Reach:

Twitter does not track reach. 

How do impressions and reach differ?

Reach is the number of unique users who have been served an ad, while impressions measure the total number of times an ad has been served. In this way, one unique user can see the same ad four times, resulting in a reach of one and impressions of 4. Number of impressions is always greater than reach. 

Why track both impressions and reach?

They both measure different aspects of the performance of your ads and content. It’s helpful to use both metrics together to figure out the effectiveness of a campaign/ad and whether the frequency of the ad had any impact on user behavior.

Reference links:

Glossary Terms:

Social Reach

Addressable Audience

Frequency Cap

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