Ecommerce Facebook Ads: 7 Essential Strategies for Marketers

by Giles ThomasLast updated on May 22, 2019

According to Facebook’s Q1 2019 Update, the social network now has 2.37 billion monthly active users.

This data alone can be enticing for small businesses to put up a Facebook page and run some ads. However, you might be wondering how much you can get out of a Facebook ad.

The answer: It is virtually limitless, as long as you know how to leverage Facebook ads well.

So, how can you run an effective Facebook ad? Read on.

Chapter 1
Use Dynamic Product Ads
Chapter 2
Use Carousel Ads
Chapter 3
Install Facebook Ads Pixel
Chapter 4
Run General Retargeting Campaigns
Chapter 5
Find New Customers with Lookalike Audiences
Chapter 6
Use Ads to Communicate Your Brand Story
Chapter 7
Strengthen Existing Customer Relationships with Custom Audiences
Chapter 1

Use Dynamic Product Ads

Dynamic ads are like the typical Facebook posts, with captions and images, that you see on your timeline. However, there is a grey “Sponsored” text under the Facebook page’s name.

Before running a Facebook Dynamic Ads, you will need to do three things:

  • You need to install the Facebook Pixel on your site.
  • You will need to create a Business Manager Account.
  • You will need to create and upload a product catalogue on Business Manager.

Below are the instructions on how you can create a Dynamic Ad:

  • Go to Ads Manager and select + Create.
  • Create your campaign. Make sure that you choose Catalog Sales as both your marketing objective and catalog.
  • Choose the product set that you’d like to advertise. Set up your audience parameter, placement, budget, and schedule.

You can visit Facebook’s Ads Help Center on how you can get started with Dynamic Ads, as well as how you can create a template for Carousel and Single Image ads.

Chapter 2

Use Carousel Ads

Gordon Donnelly describes Carousel Ads as “an interactive ad format which allows you to display up to 10 images or videos on ‘cards’ within a single ad.”

The best thing about Carousel Ads is that it gives you more room for your products or brand story. Moreover, this type of ad encourages user engagement thanks to multiple calls-to-action.

This type of Facebook ad is so effective, it can drive 30% – 50% lower cost-per-conversionsand 20% – 30% lower cost-per-clicks.

If you want to reap similar benefits, here’s how you can create a Carousel Ad:

  • Decide how many cards you’d like to upload (maximum of 10).
  • Create an image that is 600 pixels tall. Its width should be 600 pixels multiplied by the number of images you’d like to upload. So if you’ll upload five images, it should be 3,000 x 600 px.
  • Upload the image for each card and crop wherever necessary to achieve the carousel effect.

But before you go crazy on running a Carousel Ad, it is best to take of these specifications:

  • Image/Thumbnail Size: 1,080 x 1,080 pixels
  • Image/Video Aspect Ratio: 1:1 (square)
  • Image File Size: Maximum of 30MB
  • Video File Size: Maximum of 4GB
  • Video Length: Maximum of 240 minutes
  • Text: 125 characters
  • Headline: 40 characters
  • Link Description: 20 characters
Chapter 3

Install Facebook Ads Pixel

Before you run of Facebook ads, it is essential that you have the Facebook Ads Pixel on your site. It is a piece of code that allows you to measure, optimize, and build an audience for your ad campaign. Put the Facebook Pixel lets you get the most out of your ad budget.

How does Facebook Pixel work?

The code places cookies on your site visitors’ devices. These cookies track how they interact on your website and Facebook ads. Using this information, you now have an insight on how to improve and better target your ads.

Here’s how can install a Facebook pixel on your website:

  • Go to Facebook Events Manager, click the hamburger icon (≡) and choose Pixels.
  • Click the green “Create a Pixel” button.
  • Give your ad pixel a name and add your website URL, then hit the “Create” button.

After that, you can now install the ad pixel on your site. Depending on your website platform, you can choose to use a Tag Manager (i.e. Google Tag Manager) or manually install it on your site.

Please note that you only get one pixel for each ad account.

Using Facebook Pixel ensures that your ads are visible to the right audience who are more likely to take your desired action. This helps improve your ad conversion, which leads to better ROI.

Chapter 4

Run General Retargeting Campaigns

In an infographic shared by wishpond, 72% of online shoppers are likely to abandon their cart. However, you can recover 26% of those lost sales through retargeting. This can lead to a huge revenue boost, especially if you own an e-commerce site.

There are ways on how you can reduce cart abandonment, and one of them is through setting up a Facebook Retargeting Campaign.

You can run a retargeting campaign once you have the Facebook Ad Pixel installed on your site.

Next, you need to create your audience. Just head on to Facebook Ad Manager, click Menu and Audience. Click the Create Audience drop-down menu and choose Custom Audience.

After that, you will be given the option to create an audience based on website traffic. You can customize it depending on your goal (in this case, that’s capturing abandoned cart).

Lastly, you can hit your custom audience with specific ads based on products or categories they looked at but didn’t purchase. And then you can create and run an ad from there.

Retargeting is not limited to e-commerce. Any businesses can take advantage of this capability, as long as it is set up with the right audience and goals.

Chapter 5

Find New Customers with Lookalike Audiences

Facebook Lookalike Audiences are a group of Facebook users who are similar to your existing customers. These users can be connected to people who engaged with your business (i.e. liked your Facebook page) or connected with your from different sources:

  • Your list of newsletter subscribers
  • Website visitors
  • People who have installed your app
  • List of people who interacted with your business offline

Follow the instructions below to create a Facebook Lookalike Audience:

  • Go to Audience. Under the Create Audience drop-down menu, click Lookalike Audience.
  • Choose your audience source.
  • Choose the country where you would like to find a similar set of audience, and then your desired size (using the slider).
  • Click Create Audience when you’re done.

When leveraging Lookalike Audiences, it is crucial that you use the right source. Remember: Different custom audiences match different goals.

Chapter 6

Use Ads to Communicate Your Brand Story

More than promoting your business and your products, Facebooks ads are also a great medium to share your brand story.

Last September 2018, Facebook rolled out the Stories Ads to its Marketing Partner Network. The Stories Ads offers a new ad placement option to advertisers while helping them combine storytelling with advertising.

But other than being able to communicate your brand story through ads, Stories Ads is also cost-effective.

Here’s how you can create Facebook Stories Ads:

  • Go to Ads Manager and click + Create.
  • Choose your objective and click Continue.
  • Choose your audience and edit your placements when necessary. Click Continue.
  • Choose the Facebook Page where you’d like to run your ads, upload your content, and you’re all set.

Just remember that your images and videos should meet the minimum specifications to prevent any hassle with the ads delivery.

Chapter 7

Strengthen Existing Customer Relationships with Custom Audiences

Just because Facebook has over 2 billion monthly active users doesn’t mean you can target everyone through ads. It is essential that you only target users who are most likely to be interested in your business.

Enter: Facebook Custom Audience.

There are different types of custom audiences:

  • Audiences from customer list: It lets Facebook know your existing audience who can’t map through the network’s engagement or ad pixel (i.e. your newsletter subscribers).
  • Audiences from your website: These are your website visitors with matching profiles on Facebook.
  • Audiences from your mobile app: These are mobile users who interacted with your app, provided you were able to set up the SDK on Facebook for Developers.

Depending on your source, you can create custom audiences on Facebook audiences pagein Ads Manager. You can read Christina Newberry’s post for more information on how you can set up Custom Audiences by type.

Because this feature offers the best targeting available, you are sure to minimize your ad spend and maximize your ROI.

Facebook’s huge number of monthly active users make it a key marketing platform for a lot of businesses. And with its various ad platform, you can always get your message across to users who are more likely to be interested with your business.

Author: Kevin Urrutia 
Kevin Urrutia is the founder of Voy Media, a Facebook ads agency. He ads businesses in effectively improving sales and conversion through the effective utilization of Facebook advertising. Voy Media is an expert in determining the best approach, coming up with a unique solution for each client.