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Why Does My Facebook Post Say “Boost Unavailable”?

Boost Unavailable Illustration

Running Facebook ads is a great way to get more reach and engagement on your posts, more followers for your page, and more hits on your landing pages. It’s also a tremendously complicated task powered by a ton of different moving parts deep inside Facebook. Sometimes, something goes wrong, and your ability to run ads is diminished or stopped completely.

If you’ve been trying to convert a Facebook page post into an ad via the boost post button, or by boosting the post through the ads system or Power Editor, you might encounter a case where you see Boost Unavailable. This means, as you might expect, that your ability to boost that post has been disabled.

Now, don’t panic. There are a lot of different reasons this might have happened, and most of them are very simple tweaks. I’ll list all of the reasons why your ability to boost might be disabled, and what you can do about it.

Covers Can’t Be Boosted

If the post you’re trying to boost is your cover photo or cover video, you will not be able to boost it. This includes cases where you set an image or video as your cover image, but then changed your cover image again. That image is categorized as a cover image. Facebook demands that posts you boost be normal page posts that can then lead to page engagement; cover images and cover videos do not meet this criteria.

Promoting a Cover Photo

If your cover image or cover video is a piece of brand creative that you would like to boost, you will need to create a new post with that image or video. This is fine; Facebook doesn’t care if you duplicate a post for this purpose, so long as you’re not re-posting this same image or video over and over and over.

Go to your Facebook page and click photo/video to create a new post. Choose to upload the source file again. If you don’t have the original, you can download the version from Facebook to use. Make sure to click the download link, rather than right-click save-as, to get the original resolution.

Write your caption or description for your new post and click to share it. Then click the Boost Post button on the new post. You will need to choose your call to action, choose your audience, and choose your budget. Make sure you have valid payment information added to Facebook, or else you will stall out at the budget step. Choose a duration for your ad, pick a payment method, and fill out any other fields. Submit the post for boosting and, once it makes it through the ad approval process, it will start running as an ad.

Deprecated Content Can’t Be Boosted

Certain types of posts can still be made on Facebook, but cannot be boosted. This is a conscious choice from Facebook. They have retired boosting for certain types of posts because their data has shown that it often costs far more than other kinds of posts, to achieve far less in end results.

Example Older Post Cant Boost

Basically; they are scientifically proved to be inefficient and not worth boosting.

  • Profile pictures cannot be boosted. If you want to boost your profile picture, much like your cover image, you will need to create a new post with that image uploaded and submit it. Then, create the ad around it.
  • Notes cannot be boosted. The Notes system was a sort of blog post attempt to turn Facebook into a platform where people can post long-form media. In the last half a decade, Facebook has decided to try a different system, namely Instant Articles. Instant Articles are a very good type of blog-adjacent media, and they can be monetized. Notes, and posts that contain links to notes, cannot be boosted.
  • Albums cannot be boosted. Albums are a static interface for accessing your photos section. If you want to bring attention to your photos, you will need to boost an image within the album. Consider which image is most attractive and move it to the front of the album, then boost that image as a post on its own. Multi-image posts cannot be boosted on their own.

If you want to boost a post that contains a note, or the note itself, you will need to create a new post on your wall that itself contains the content of the note. This isn’t ideal, as notes were designed to be longer than posts normally are, so it’s a less than ideal ad format. Instead, consider instant articles.

Live and Scheduled Videos are Restricted

You may have seen certain live videos or scheduled videos being boosted the instant they are published, but you are unable to do the same to your own videos. Unfortunately, live videos and scheduled videos can only be boosted if you’re a verified page with a blue checkmark. This is one of the many perks of being a verified account.

Live Video Boost Unavailable

If you want to boost a live video or a scheduled video, you will either have to get yourself verified, or you will have to convert the video into a normal video. In the case of a scheduled video, simply publish the video and boost it. In the case of a live video, you will need to take the video as it is streamed and save it locally, then upload the archived video and boost that. Unfortunately, you will not be able to boost a post while the video is live. You can only boost it after the fact.

One trick you can try to get around this is to record the first few minutes of a livestream, save it, and use that as a video to boost. Use a link to your livestream in the caption of the video. This way it will appear as though you’re boosting the very start of a livestream, leading users to a stream in progress. It won’t be seamless, but it’s a neat way to give that impression.

Draft Posts Can’t Be Boosted

A draft is, by definition, not the published version of a post. If you have saved a draft of your post and you want to boost or promote that post, you will need to publish the post. If you saved the post as a draft because you wanted to edit it later, you will need to make any final edits before boosting the post, and publish the post before boosting it. You cannot edit a post once it has been approved as an ad without cancelling and restarting the ad with an entirely new approval process.

If you would like to create an ad that runs at a later date, do not do this through the drafts system. Instead, create the ad as a scheduled ad with a start date later down the line. You will only be able to edit the ad copy up until you want to submit it for approval, but you can save an ad without running the ad right away.

Shared Posts Can’t Be Boosted

When you share a post on Facebook, that post is shared on your timeline, but it is still a post from the person who initially posted it. Facebook gives full attribution to the original poster; the only indication that you shared it is a line at the top indicating that you shared the post, so users don’t feel like they’re seeing posts from pages they didn’t follow for no reason at all. That feeling, of course, is reserved for paid ads.

Shared Post on Facebook

Facebook recommends that, if you want to boost a shared post, you create a new post with the original content and boost that post. You can see it under the “shared posts can’t be boosted” subheading in this article.

I do not recommend this, because it is content theft, plagiarism, and highly immoral. Do not steal the content of another brand and boost it as though it’s your own content. In fact, do not boost a post made by another brand at all, no matter how much it benefits your audience or your brand. It’s up to the brand that posted it to boost it. Even if Facebook copied and pasted their instructions for all of their other boost post issues – generally just “create a new post” instructions – doesn’t mean that you are able to steal content without being punished.

This does include shares of your own posts.  You as a brand can share your own posts on your own timeline to give them another round of circulation. You cannot boost the shared version; you must boost the original version. This is fine to do, simply navigate to the original post and boost that instead.

Expired Posts Can’t Be Boosted

Some kinds of posts can be set to have a specific shelf life. Videos, for example, can have an expiration date set on them. Certain other kinds of posts, such as offers, can expire as well, when the offer runs out or the date for the offer ends.

These kinds of posts are not useful to your audience once they have expired, so they cannot be boosted. If you want to boost a post that has expired, you will have to make another post of the same content or offer. If you ran an offer and that offer has expired, you will need to make another version of that offer. If you’re not able to make that offer again, you will not be able to boost a post with that offer.

Facebook Click IDs Can’t Be Boosted

A Facebook Click ID is a string of characters that are added to a link or URL when a user clicks on it from Facebook. This is tracking code that tells Insights some information about the person who clicked the post and their behaviors after they have clicked. When someone pastes you a Facebook link and it has 150 characters of random nonsense at the end of it, you’re looking at a click ID.

Facebook Post ID

You cannot boost a post if the URL you are trying to boost has a click ID attached to it. If you want to boost that post, you will need to find the original permalink for the post, or create a new post with the same content. If you were to boost a post with a click ID attached to it, your Insights for that post would be skewed; all tracked data would essentially come from one user, thus making your demographics, click data, and behavior data entirely incorrect.

Certain Roles Can’t Boost Posts

There are eight different roles a person can have with regards to a page. These roles are: Admin, Editor, Moderator, Advertiser, Analyst, Job Manager, User, and Banned. The last two are not official page roles; the majority of your audience are users, and those you have banned from your page are banned.

Different roles have different capabilities. Banned users cannot see your page or its posts. Users can see your page and its posts, but cannot interact with them in any way beyond likes, shares, reports, and other forms of engagement.

Facebook Page Roles

Admins, Editors, Moderators, Advertisers, and Job Managers are all able to create and boost posts for a page, as well as create and run ads directly from the ads manager or from business manager or power editor. Analysts are not able to advertise on a page.

Unpublished Pages Can’t Boost Posts

If your page is unpublished, it means the page and all of its contents are visible only to people who have a role with the page. You cannot boost posts from a page that is not published because those posts would be invisible. If you want to boost posts from a page that is not published, you will need to publish the page. Make sure the page is completely filled out and ready to be public before making it public.

Your Ad Account is Disabled

In some cases your ad account will be disabled. This can happen due to unusual activity, or because you closed it manually. If you closed it manually, you will need to go to the ads manager and click the Reactivate button. If it was closed for another reason, you will need to contact Facebook ad support. Facebook has a form specifically for this issue, found here. Follow the instructions and work with Facebook to have your ad account restored, if possible.


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Comments

  1. Shane Robinson says:

    Hi, my post shows boost unavailable but doesn’t seem to fit any of the reasons above. Are there another reasons this might be?

    • James Parsons says:

      Hi Shane, there’s a possibility it contains some keywords that triggered an algorithm flag, which made it not promotable. For example, if you said “marijuana” or “abortion” or some sort of sensitive word that is on a list, it might automatically tell you that you’re not able to promote that post.

      What kind of post was it; a video, photo, link, or text post?

  2. Laura Gallagher says:

    Hi,

    My post also have “Boost Unavailable” but doesn’t fit in any of these categories. It’s a competition, but I have adhered to the FB rules (eg. no like-gating, no like and share, just comment). I have uploaded the same competition 3 times to our business page, purely because it won’t boost. The first one, we could boost but then it wasn’t approved.

    There are no mentions of any sensitive words. It’s just a competition to win a pair of glasses.

    One has a mix of photos and a video, and one only has photos but no emojis and no mention of FB.

    But still it won’t work.

    Any tips?

  3. Bridget says:

    Posted for an open house and it will not allow me to boost. It states because it is attached to an event? I have boosted previous open houses.

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