Friday, February 16, 2024

Meta to Pass Along Fee for Boosted Posts


To support the millions of small businesses that use boosted posts on Facebook and Instagram, advertisers can now go to and on mobile and desktop to boost their content and avoid a 30% Apple service charge.

The Apple service charge is a result of updates Apple made to the App Store Review Guidelines. Starting later this month, when an advertiser uses the Facebook or Instagram iOS app to Boost a post, they will be billed through Apple, which retains a 30% service charge on the total ad payment, before any applicable taxes. This service charge is retained by Apple, not Meta.

In other words, they are charging extra if the payment is processed by Apple, passing Apple’s fee along to the customer. You can avoid the fee by purchasing on the Web, but they probably aren’t allowed to tell you that in the app.

We are required to either comply with Apple’s guidelines, or remove boosted posts from our apps. We do not want to remove the ability to boost posts, as this would hurt small businesses by making the feature less discoverable and potentially deprive them of a valuable way to promote their business.


Another change happening as a result of Apple’s update is that advertisers will need to go through a different payment process when boosting posts through the Facebook and Instagram iOS apps. Unlike the previous experience, where advertisers were charged after their boosted posts ran, businesses on iOS will now be required to pay in advance, and add prepaid funds to their account to draw from to boost a post.

Joe Rossignol:

“We have always required that purchases of digital goods and services within apps must use In-App Purchase,” said Apple, in a statement shared with MacRumors today. “Boosting, which allows an individual or organization to pay to increase the reach of a post or profile, is a digital service — so of course In-App Purchase is required. This has always been the case and there are many examples of apps that do it successfully.”

As Rossignol points out, Apple loves to say stuff like this even when it clearly isn’t true so that they can pretend they’ve never raised any fees. Meta has been selling boosts for years without paying this fee, which is why Apple updated the rules in 2022 to say that the policy was changing. The statement above is the exact same one they offered to the press at that time. If boosting has always required a fee, why did Phil Schiller testify in the Epic trial that Apple had never taken a cut of ad revenue? The bottom line is that Apple changed the rules and gave Facebook a special temporary exception that was not available to other developers.


4 Comments RSS · Twitter · Mastodon

The appstore is rotten and the rot is spreading to the rest of the company.

Apple gives me bad vibes on a level that I never had towards Microsoft 20 years ago. Why have they become so hostile towards developers and users? It’s just gross.

I feel like Microsoft is squandering an opportunity to be the “good guy” this time around, since Windows hasn’t really had any substantial improvements in the nearly 10 years since Windows 10 was released. Are they not trying to attract new customers anymore? I still don’t understand how they haven’t modernized every single nook and cranny of Windows… not even the basic system apps like Disk Management, which all still look like they’ve barely changed since Windows XP. Like if they’d just reskin and make 1 of these apps HiDPI/retina every other month for the past decade, the entirety of Windows 11 would be modernized. Yet here we are in 2024 and using Windows on a 4k display is still a total discombobulated mess. It’s mind boggling.

Kevin Schumacher

> If boosting has always required a fee, why did Phil Schiller testify in the Epic trial that Apple had never taken a cut of ad revenue?

My guess is the argument would be "boosting" isn't exactly advertising because it starts as a regular post and is then promoted.

Ad management apps are also not subject to IAP, so that's another point in the direction of he was speaking about more traditional advertising rather than Betty's House of Pancakes posting about their new blueberry waffles on their own FB page and then boosting that post.

Not sure I entirely buy that distinction, but I do think it's plausible he wasn't willfully lying.

@Enrico, you got that backwards I'm afraid

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