Have you started using paid advertising for your business and are wondering how to get the most out of your Facebook ads? In this blog post, I share six best practices that will help you create winning Facebook ads.
1. Keep your ad copy short and to the point
Internet users have short attention spans. And we all know this because we are those users ourselves - don't we all spend hours on our phones and on social media every day?
If you're starting to use ads for your e-commerce business to boost sales, it's important you take your audience's attention span and time constraints into account and create copy that:
For more tips on how to do this, check out my blog post on How to create the best Facebook ads for your e-commerce business.
2. Add multiple images of your product
When it comes to ad attributes, its visual elements, or 'creatives' can have a huge impact on the way your ad performs with your ideal customers. Because when you're trying to encourage social media users to buy your products online, showing them one single picture won't quite cut it.
The good news is that the Facebook Business Manager gives you the options to arrange your imagery into a carousel or a collection, and it's definitely something I recommend you try out.
The carousel format allows you to show two or more images (or videos) and makes it super easy for your audience to consume your content. They simply scroll through the pictures by either swiping the screen or clicking on the right/left arrows.
For best results, include headlines, links, and Calls to Action (CTAs) to your ad - these help you add context and detail to your copy and can act as further incentives for your prospects to click on that buy button. Of course, not all carousels will perform in the same way, so experiment with a few combinations of images and make sure you display your better-performing pics first.
It's worth mentioning that your images don't always need to be professional photoshoots. If you haven't arranged one yet, or if you only have a limited amount of professional photos, don't let that hold you back. Lifestyle photography and more 'native' imagery can also prove engaging and enticing. After all, it looks less staged, more natural, and more like a recommendation from a friend than an ad.
Plus, people will react to your creatives differently. If you're targeting prospects who have already clicked through to your website (i.e. retargeting), product photography may work better than lifestyle imagery, which is more appropriate for targeting prospective customers instead.
3. Keep image text to a minimum
According to Facebook, "images with less than 20% text perform better". This is why when Facebook ads were first introduced, a high percentage of them used to be rejected. In my experience, this doesn't happen as frequently anymore, but it's something to bear in mind when choosing your creatives.
Image text, especially when long and cluttered isn't always easy to read, and a large number of words can also take the focus away from your photos, and, therefore, your product. And that's the last thing you want!
If you need to add any text to your product images, such as a headline, a link, or a description, you can use the ad copy or space under the image instead. That makes for a better user experience and reduces your risk of having Facebook reject your ad.
And if, for whatever reason, you feel the need to use text over your images, keep it short, clear, and concise. Get your message across effectively, but ensure you're using fewer words and a small-enough font to keep the main focus on your images, rather than on the text.
4. Use vertical videos instead of square or landscape
If you've decided to include a video of your products, consider recording or creating your video in a vertical format. Why? Most people browse social media on their smartphones, rather than their laptops, tablets, or desktops. This means that when they're scrolling on social media, they're holding their phone in a vertical position.
If your video fits that format - and doesn't force your audience to rotate their phone to turn your video horizontally - you're already at an advantage. You're making it easier for someone to consume (and enjoy) your content.
Research from Buffer conducted in 2019 proved that vertical videos consistently outperform landscape and square videos in the Facebook news feed. And when you think about it, creating videos that utilise the full vertical frame means you have more space at your disposal than when choosing the square format, for example.
When your video takes up the whole length of the screen, you can focus and direct your ideal customers' eyes exactly where you want them to go. And with more space to play with, you can also think of different strategies to make your video more engaging, like splitting the screen in two or adding graphic or design elements to help you elevate the quality of your ad, which leads me nicely to the next point...
5. Enhance your images or videos with creativity and movement
In a busy market space (and crowded news feeds), you want your ads to stand out, and adding movement is an easy and effective way to do so. If you're sharing your ad on Instagram Stories, for example, Facebook provides free templates to help you animate your ads automatically.
But there's more you can do, such as creating timelapse videos, loop videos, animating text, or building videos that include images, text, and narration.
Here are a few apps I regularly use and recommend to my clients:
Never forget to include strong CTA buttons in your ads. You don't need to get extremely creative here. For most products, a simple "Shop now" or "Get offer" will be everything you need.
When deciding on your CTA, feel free to follow the Facebook Business Manager's recommendations, but be prepared to test a few combinations of copy, creatives, and CTA buttons.
For example, if you're running retargeting ads (specifically for those who have either visited your website or added your product into their basket but didn't purchase), you may want to try slightly different language in your copy. After all, these people have already seen your product, and this is your chance to remind them of what a great offer they're potentially missing out on. So perhaps consider giving them a little nudge and adding "10% off with this coupon code," for example.
CTA buttons can have different wording, colour, and formats depending on what you're trying to achieve with your ad, so, as I always say, be prepared to do some testing and see what performs better for you. Whatever you do when picking your CTA buttons, ensure they stand out. You want people to engage with your ad and take action.
Do you need support to get the most out of your Facebook ads?As you've probably gathered by now, running social media ads for your product-based business takes a lot of testing and experimenting. It's all about finding the right combination of ad copy, creatitves, CTAs, and platforms that will deliver the best results for you. So if you're an established e-commerce business and need some help to get the most out of your Facebook ads, get in touch.
I offer FREE 30-minute strategy calls that are perfect if you:
Are you a business owner and want to boost your sales with social media advertising? Perhaps you want to start creating Instagram or Facebook ads but have no idea about what would work for your brand? In this step-by-step guide, I share how to create the best Facebook ads for your e-commerce business.
1. Write engaging ad copy that inspires your prospective customers
The words you choose for your Facebook ad have the potential to make or break the success of your ad campaign. But what makes for engaging, inspiring copy? Let's look at this example from Boden.
You'll notice that the ad copy is short, concise, and to the point. When it comes to e-commerce and buying products from the internet, people aren't interested in reading long text.
Truth is, they're on social media (Facebook or Instagram, for example) to connect with friends and family, check what else is going on in the world, or generally looking for entertainment and inspiration. So when crafting your copy, bear this in mind and aim to create something short and snappy.
You want your ad copy to be entertaining, engaging, and inspiring. But how exactly do you achieve that?
First thing first, include a 'hook' and an offer. The 'hook' is that initial section of your copy that stops the reader in their tracks. Your job here is to grab your prospective customers' attention, make them stop scrolling, and look at your ad instead.
In order to do that, you may need to get a bit creative. Contrary to what a lot of e-commerce business owners might believe, your ad copy isn't the place to list all your product features. Because let's face it - that doesn't make for the most dazzling or interesting read, does it?
Instead, aim to inspire people.
What do you include in your ad copy?If you're looking for some ideas or inspiration around what to include in your ad copy, try with:
Using words and phrases your customers use isn't the only thing to think about when deciding how to craft your ad copy, especially because the wrong choices could make all the difference between your ad being approved or rejected by Facebook. Let's look at the example below from one of my clients, Laura De Zordo Jewellery.
Generally speaking, when you're selling a product, multiple images tend to do a better job at showcasing your product than one single picture will. Within Facebook's Business Manager, you can also combine multiple photos together to create a slideshow video, so that's yet another option for you to test out in your ads.
As for what type of photos you should include, professional photoshoots of your product aren't the only option. Sometimes lifestyle and more 'native' shots that show your product in use or 'in action' can contribute to making it look more appealing and within reach. More than anything, it looks less like an ad and more like a friend recommending something they bought, so try a combination of both.
3. Include a strong Call To Action (CTA)It goes without saying that the best Facebook ads for your e-commerce business should also contain a strong Call To Action (CTA). Think along the lines of:
When thinking about your CTA, it's important to be clear and direct. Also, never give your customers too much choice, because, as they say, "a confused mind never buys". So be absolutely clear and focused on what you want your customers to do next - give them one thing to do and make sure that translates into the text of your CTA buttons.
4. Decide on the best ad placementThe decision around where to publish your ad (i.e. which social media platforms) depends on where your ideal customers tend to be the most active. Within the Facebook Business Manager, you can select the platforms you want to push your ad onto:
If you do opt for the 'Automatic Placement' option, do check that the visuals you have included in your ad work for Instagram too. The last thing you want is for a video to be cut off or for your product to sit at an odd position within the ad. So before hitting the publish button, do make use of the Ad Preview feature and check that your creatives work.
Would you like some help to create the best Facebook ads for your e-commerce business?When it comes to best practice and recommendations around creating high-performing ads, rules change frequently. If you're an established e-commerce business looking to get better results from your Facebook or Instagram ads, get in touch. I offer FREE 30-minute strategy calls that are perfect if you need help with your Facebook Ads Management, would like an audit of your Facebook Ad Account, or need support with Shopify.
If you have an online store and advertising on Facebook, you might have hear about the speculations about the impact iOS 14 will have on ads. The reason for that is, in iOS 14, app users will be given the option to opt in or out of tracking. That’s a major change that will reduce the amount of data that’s collected by Facebook.
How many users will opt in, how many users will opt out, we will see.
Personally I prefer seeing ads that are relevant to me, so I will opt in. However, because of the privacy concerns, a lot of people might opt out of tracking.
We are all expecting to see the impacts of this over the next few weeks.
Facebook shared these guides about the upcoming changes that will affect advertisers.
“Apple has announced changes with iOS 14 that will impact how we receive and process conversion events from tools like the Facebook pixel. Businesses that advertise mobile apps, as well as those that optimize, target, and report on web conversion events from any of our business tools will be affected.”
This means Facebook will not be able collect data to understand what a conversion is, the targeting may not be as effective and the reporting will be affected, too.
What actions should advertisers take now?
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1.Your audience is on Facebook
First things first. A lot of business owners still wonder if their audience is on Facebook. Despite all the negative press about Facebook, it is still the biggest social media platform. 2 billion and counting users are on Facebook every month. They are your audience, your potential clients. If you don’t utilize the platform, your competitors will.
2. People log in to Facebook daily.
Do you check your Facebook account first thing in the morning? So do millions of people around the world. About 75 % of adults check Facebook log in to Facebook daily. Half of these log into Facebook multiple times a day.
3.Organic reach is dead.
As the platform grew, the content shared on Facebook has grown as well. Therefore there is a huge competition between every piece of content shared on Facebook. Last year, Mark Zuckerberg, announced that they want “meaningful content” from friends, family, and groups to be at the core of Facebook. This means that Facebook is favoring posts from family and friends over public content. This was emphasized in F8 earlier this month. Just posting to Facebook is not enough to grow your business as most of your content will not reach your followers. Therefore businesses owners need to consider Facebook ads if they want to grow their sales through Facebook.
4.Facebook advertising can work wonders if you use it strategically.
Facebook is an amazing advertising platform. The targeting opportunities it offers are simply mind blowing. However, boosting a few posts here and there just doesn’t cut it. You need to be strategic. Facebook ads are also integrated across social media platforms. When you advertise on Facebook, depending on where you create your ad and the type of ad you create, you can choose to show your ads on Instagram, Messenger and Audience Network.
5.Facebook offers many different targeting options.
You can advertise to people by age, interests, behavior, and location. If you know who you want to reach, then Facebook can help you find those people so that you can drive them to your website, increase brand awareness and sales.
6.You can measure your success in real time.
The beauty of Facebook ads is that you can always see what impact your ad is creating. If it’s not working well, you can switch it off. If it’s working well, you can scale it.
7.Retargeting options help you reach wider audiences.
You can retarget your website visitors, email list, people who abandon their carts, your Facebook page followers… There are so many options. You can also create custom audiences and lookalike audiences which lets you target people similar to the people who already engage with your business.
Currently Facebook is the most cost-effective advertising investment any business owner can make. The beauty of Facebook advertising is that you are always in control. Unlike traditional advertising mediums, you don’t have to spend thousands of pounds, only to find two months later no one has bought from you. You can target exactly the type of people who will be interested to buy from you.
Here is the thing though. Facebook ads work but they are not magic. We don't hang out on Facebook with our wallets open. So business owners need to use Facebook ads strategically to nurture and grow an audience that will buy from them.
Have you used Facebook ads? What was your experience?
If you need support running your ads, then please get in touch. You can hire me for monthly management of your ads or for hourly sessions. More info here.