The Facebook ads learning phase is important to the success of a Facebook ad, however it’s not something that is explained or talked about often.

So, what is the Facebook ads learning phase?

The learning phase is Facebook’s way of trying to work out how to generate the best results possible from your campaign. They serve your ad to different people within your target audience to work out who is most likely to take your desired action. So let’s say for example, you’ve created a Facebook ad campaign and used the traffic objective. Facebook is going to try and work out who within your target audience is most likely to click on your ad and go through to your landing page.

It’s important to stress that the learning phase is an experimental process. Therefore, the results you get during this phase are likely to be worse than the results you will get once Facebook has had time to optimize your campaigns. So don’t panic if your ads don’t perform as well as you’d hoped to start with.

When does the Facebook ads learning phase run?

The learning phase will begin when you first launch a Facebook ad or when you make a significant adjustment to a campaign. The learning phase will last for as long as it takes to achieve 50 optimization events.

An optimization event is determined by your campaign objective. For example, if you optimize for link clicks then the learning phase will last until you’ve generated roughly 50 link clicks. It’s important to note that if you are using the conversion objective, the 50 optimization events should occur within your conversion window. For example, with a 7 day conversion window, you will need roughly 50 conversions within 7 days for Facebook to optimize properly.

Facebook will show you when an ad set is in the learning phase, and when it has completed the learning phase. This can be found in the delivery column of Ads Manager:

What should I do during the Facebook Ads Learning Phase?

As I mentioned above, this is an experimental phase, so it’s important that you don’t judge the results you get from your campaigns too early. Don’t judge them during the learning phase. Wait until the learning phase is complete.

It’s also important that you don’t make any significant adjustments to your ad, your ad set, or even the campaign during the learning phase. Any significant adjustments will restart the learning phase and you’ll have to go through the process all over again. This is one of my top Facebook advertising tips, as early adjustments could cost you time and money. They could also confuse Facebook’s targeting algorithms and negatively impact your campaign.

Facebook has advised that significant adjustments include changes to your objective, targeting, ad creative, pausing the ad set for 7 days or longer, or adding a new ad to the ad set.

So it might be tempting, but it’s best to just leave your campaign alone during the learning phase. You should come back to it in a few days time, when the phase has ended, to assess campaign performance and make any necessary adjustments. One of the best metrics for assessing ad performance is Facebook ads relevance score.

Note that some minor changes, such as small adjustments to your Facebook ad budget or bid caps won’t have an effect on the learning phase. Of course, if you need to make significant adjustments, then the learning phase shouldn’t stop you from doing that. Just remember not to judge your adjustments too soon after you’ve made them.

It should also be noted, that even when the learning phase has finished, Facebook does not stop optimizing your campaigns. Facebook’s algorithms will continue to gather and analyse data in order to ensure that your campaigns perform as well as they possibly can for your objective; within your targeting and delivery parameters.


The Facebook ads learning phase is an important part of Facebook’s optimization process. During the phase Facebook will work out how to generate the best results possible for your campaign.

This is an experimental process, so results during the learning phase will fluctuate significantly.

The phase usually lasts for 50 optimization events, which will be determined by your Facebook ad objective.

During the learning phase, it is important that you don’t judge your results or make any significant adjustments. This will restart the learning phase and may confuse Facebook’s algorithms. If you can, make your assessments and adjustments once the learning phase has completed.

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