Who viewed my Facebook profile? Here’s how to know.

If you’re searching “who viewed my Facebook profile?” in hopes of a list, there’s a simple way to check — sort of.

Can you tell who is viewing your Facebook profile? Yes and no, and that really depends on which of Facebook’s features you use, how often you use them, and if you’re only using Facebook for personal reasons or for business as well. There is a way to glimpse into insights for each, but just so you know, it’s not a flawless science. Before reading on, you can check out my explanation of how to tell who is looking at your Instagram, too.

Let’s look at answering your burning who viewed my Facebook profile question from a personal standpoint.

Before anything else, make sure you’re using the mobile Facebook app for either iOS or android. The easiest way to get an idea of who is peeking at your profile is to use the mobile-only features, and they’re as simple as can be, albeit not flawless. So let’s first login to your mobile home screen. Here’s mine (and while you’re there, let’s be friends!):

Now, take note of how many “friends” and how many “followers” you have. Friends are people that you’ve either added or they’ve added you and you’ve accepted. Followers are people who you either haven’t accepted the friend requests of and they’re still in your pending queue, or if your profile is popular because you’re a blogger or athlete or politician or someone popular by internet standards, they’ve chosen to just follow your feed and updates. If you use Facebook just for personal reasons and don’t have any groups that you run or moderate or a business page of some sort, you’ll only be able to tell who has viewed your profile from your friends list, not your followers list. That may eventually change, but Facebook isn’t quite there yet.

Anyway, if you use Facebook’s stories option, it will give you a little bit of insight into who looks at your Facebook profile. It’s not flawless though, as not every Facebook user engages in these temporary updates, and they’re only viewable between actual friends (not just followers).

Who viewed my Facebook profile? At least the people in the next screen shot.

This feature is definitely not as good as Instagram’s stories feature because of how limiting it is. Let me paint a clearer picture for you: when I upload a story to my public, verified Instagram page the sky is basically the limit. All my followers are free to see it, plus I can have random people search the geotags to find it, plus just about anyone else can make their way over to my stories. Facebook is different, though, and I may have tens of thousands of FOLLOWERS there, but only a few thousand are my actual FRIENDS. Of those friends, not everyone uses the stories function (I know my mom doesn’t), leaving the potential viewer pool next to nil. Essentially, it’s great for showing off semi-private life moments, but nothing more. There’s no way to amplify yourself on Facebook stories yet, and that’s a shame.

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You’ll notice after an hour or two I only had seventeen views on the Facebook story I uploaded, which would be a drop in the bucket compared to one of my Instagram stories. Also, can we take a moment to appreciate Mr. Sharknado, Ian Ziering, viewing my stories?

While Facebook stories gives you an idea of who is taking a peek, it doesn’t give you the fullest picture of the age old who viewed my Facebook profile answer, so let’s move on.

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Now let’s look at the who viewed my Facebook profile question from a business perspective.

If you’re not already using the Facebook groups feature, you need to be, and not just because it can help you determine who is really engaged in your content — but because it’s generally great and useful. I started a group called Travel Obsessed (feel free to join it), and another called Beauty and Makeup Lovers Share Anything to bring my extended networks together in collaborative ways. Feel free to join either if you’re into travel or the beauty scene, but know they offer me SO much more than just the ability to share cool content with my friends and their friends.

Using groups pushes updates to the top of your friends’ notifications feeds, and when they comment, their friends get notified too — meaning even if someone isn’t your friend, your friend’s comment will push your content into their newsfeed, and that’s pretty cool. That also means you get a wider network of people who can see you and your content, which gives you the broadest possible scope and answer to the who viewed my Facebook profile question without actually hacking into Facebook’s private analytics (we wish!).

You can play around with the groups function yourself, but you may not even have to start your own group to appreciate the function. Even just posting in another person’s group can give you great insights. Take a look.

Here’s a post from a group I’m not even an admin in:

Who viewed my Facebook profile? Well, these people at least viewed your post.

You see that number “69” on the top right hand side? That’s how many people saw that post. Let’s go through them, because yes, you can click there and get a deeper set of facts. Amen.

Facebook will actually tell you which group members saw your post and which group members didn’t have a chance or chose not to look. Fascinating stuff, and probably the best insight into your total stalkability on Facebook.

Will you be able to know if an ex or employer is viewing your profile?

Unless you’re friends with them on Facebook, in the same Facebook groups as them, or they specifically told you they looked — no, you won’t be able to see. That’s a feature that Facebook seems to hold near and dear to their hearts, knowing that everyone does a little stalking from time to time and almost nobody on this planet wants to be called out for it.

In the meantime, use your stories and groups functions to get the best possible idea of who is viewing your Facebook profile.

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Bryce Gruber is a Manhattanite mom who can be found jet-setting off to every corner of the globe. She loves exotic places, planes with WiFi, summer clothes, & Sucre brown butter truffles. Bryce's aim is to do to luxury what Elton John did to being gay. Follow her on twitter @brycegruber