Facebook Dynamic Ads are one of the most successful ad formats today. Here’s how to get started, target users throughout the funnel, and succesfully boost ecommerce sales.
Online advertising has come a long a way in the last few years:
With more than 2 billion active monthly social network users, Facebook provides a sophisticated advertising channel that seems to perfectly match today’s market needs.
For retailers, its most successful ad format is undoubtedly Product Catalog Sales alias “Dynamic Ads” (formerly “Dynamic Product Ads”).
If you’re not yet using them, you may be wasting huge potential! Read on to learn why…
Facebook is far from the only place for online retailers to push ads. So why do we talk about them like they’re the best thing since tabbed browsing? It’s because everything about Facebook Dynamic ads are unique.
Facebook Dynamic ads use data feeds to generate and serve up millions of unique ads. They funnel boring information like brand names and shipping information into interesting, gorgeous ads for Facebook users. These ads come in single-image, carousels, or collections.
More importantly, these ads can also be pushed to Instagram and audience networks. In the past, advertisers were often forced to dance around numerous different sites and networks, as only so many ads can be pushed on one site without completely infuriating its userbase. The Facebook audience network is the result of grassroot efforts to grow mobile and native ad networks, making advertisers happy without completely overstuffing spaces like Facebook and Instagram.
Instead of having to create an ad for each individual product, Facebook Dynamic Ads are generated for your entire inventory based on a scalable, dynamic template.
This means you only create one ad and Facebook will automatically draw the relevant information (e.g. titles, prices and availabilities) from your product data feed to dynamically serve ads to specific audiences.
Facebook is an evergreen “always-on” channel, which means that once your campaign is set up, it can work without much required maintenance – so your product information will automatically be kept up-to-date.
Facebook’s advertising formats offer remarkably advanced targeting capabilities thanks to a rich pool of audience information, detailed tracking and an intelligent algorithm that regulates ad delivery based on relevance for each user.
Dynamic ads carry this to the extreme: the adverts show the exact products the user has previously shown interest in. Thus, retailers can target consumers much more precisely than ever and are bound to see increases in conversion rates and revenue.
While traditional banner advertising tends to target audiences rather randomly, Dynamic Ads allow for increased flexibility. Apart from product interests, you can address users based on which stage of the sales funnel they are in. For example, after they have viewed your product page, signed up for a newsletter, abandoned their cart or completed a sale.
Hence, Facebook Dynamic Ads help you improve overall retail performance by enhancing every single step.
One of Facebook’s many strengths is their ability to not only deliver perfectly tailored advertising on any device, but also to reach unique users across different devices. Basically, as long as a user is logged into Facebook, they can be reached with relevant ads, in the right format.
Facebook offers a range of tools and features to monitor and optimize the performance of your campaigns, ad sets and ads. What’s more, they make it easy to understand your audiences both on Facebook and in your shop, to test which campaign settings work best and to find out how these settings impact your overall marketing and sales success.
Thanks to these options, marketers don’t have to sit and wait for their campaigns to work. They actually have extensive possibilities to actively make a positive impact on their campaigns’ outcome.
The most basic ad is generic and pushed to a wide, rather random audience. However, this “push it out there and cross your fingers” approach is becoming a thing a past. Advertisers now have more tools than ever to locate and serve ads to the right audience. In fact, this is so commonly done that the basic, un-targeted ad has become, in many ways, dead on arrival.
But where do you want to put your efforts? Perhaps sales is pushing for masterful retargeting and results, but the marketing team needs fresh leads. Facebook offers an array of targeting tools, making it easy to target users at any stage of the funnel.
Find new leads
Facebook offers the basics, pushing ads to users based on demographics, interests, or behavior. You can even start with users of a certain age, then narrow your audience down to only those have made purchases or have visited a certain page or engaged in certain topics. It doesn’t get more targeted than that, does it?
Sometimes you have to get creative. Finding a desirable audience isn’t always clear cut. In fact, it can seem almost impossible at times to completely isolate what qualities will make a user valuable. Is it their location, affiliation to a team or topic, none of the above? All of the above?
Facebook Dynamic ads uses new tools like Lookalike audiences to find new users in a somewhat more holistic way. By levering information about your best customers, Facebook can locate never-before-considered target groups that share similar attributes. It’s unclear whether this is science, art, or black magic, but it’s bringing new users to stale audience lists.
Retargeting is perhaps Facebook’s most beloved usage among marketers. This is likely because most of past ecommerce customers are on Facebook and they visit the site regularly. That means you can deliver targeted ads as necessary to keep those past buyers engaged and remind them you’re always there, waiting with more fabulous products.
There are several different directions marketers can choose to take, but they’ll often go one of these routes to nurture and retarget:
Existing customers are known to spend more than new customers each visit and keep coming back. In fact, 65% of a company’s business will come from existing customers. Facebook allows marketers to go straight for the sale by uploading a customer file or offline data. Don’t forget, social media isn’t just about finding fresh, new prospects or reminding warm prospects: it offers marketers access to users in every stage of the funnel.
If you haven’t already done so, the first important step is to implement Facebook’s tracking pixel on your website or app. It allows you to track your visitors’ browsing behavior and interactions within your shop. Add at least these three events to your website or app:
However, there are many more you can add:
Even if you don’t start running campaigns immediately, the earlier you implement tracking, the more data you will be able to use for targeting the day you launch your ads.
To get the most out of them for your business, you’ll need a plan of how the format will support your marketing strategy and which tactics will help you reach your goals. Take a look at the different stages of your conversion funnel to identify your weak points and unused potential.
Make sure you know who your buyer personas are. Find out more about their demographics, interests, and behaviors by searching for insights in your analytics data or in Facebook’s audience insight tool.
To provide Facebook with the product content for your ads, you have to submit a product feed: a data file listing all of your products and their attributes (title, description, price, image link, etc.).
The product feed is a central component of Dynamic Ads, as it contains the content your created ads will be based on. To be able to upload it to Facebook, your feed must follow Facebook’s feed specifications. For your ads to perform well, also make sure your feed contains error-free, complete and attractive content.
Good to know: The attributes required for Facebook are very similar to the Google Merchant Center feed. If you are already selling on Google Shopping, you may want to read this post comparing Google Shopping and Facebook Dynamic Ads for product data feeds.
And last but not least, you need to create a campaign on Facebook. Once you have selected “Product Catalog Sales” as a campaign objective, Facebook will take you through the workflow, which offers a broad variety of configuration settings such as target audiences, placements, budget and ad messages.
Facebook Dynamic ads’ rapidly growing popularity is in large part due to its automated, highly objective and analytical features. This makes it easy to forget the single most important piece of the puzzle: the ad itself.
Don’t get distracted by Facebook’s cool targeting options. Always focus on making your ads and data incredible.
Once you have your numbers and quantitative results in hand, always return to your ad. Consider exactly where your copy will go and how the creative can be used to make the ad more click-worthy.
As powerful as Facebook Dynamic ads can be, a poorly crafted ad won’t make up for any amount of data and research. No matter how great or well-targeted the product is, it’s still an ad. That means, if you want to boost ecommerce sales, you’ll need to focus on making it fabulous.
Always consider the data submitted in your product feed and ensure that it’s optimized for the user as well as Facebook.
Do you want to get started with Facebook Dynamic Ads? Or, would you like to improve your existing campaign performance?
Download our comprehensive guide on campaign creation for Facebook Dynamic Ads and learn everything you need to know to make your campaigns successfully increase ecommerce sales.
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