How to use Facebook Ads for your ecommerce business

Using Facebook Ads for your ecommerce business

Published in Paid advertising

If you have your own ecommerce website, then setting up a Facebook page is the first step towards taking advantage of the social media site to attract more shoppers. The next step is to use Facebook Ads to achieve various goals that will help you to grow your ecommerce business; building up awareness of your business, attracting more visitors to your shop and ultimately increasing sales.

 Facebook is used daily by billions of people, and the information collected about users allows you to create specific, targeted and effective adverts that will reach people who are likely to make a purchase. We take a look at the different kind of Facebook Ads you can use, how to set them up and some advice for how Facebook Ads can benefit your ecommerce business.

How do you set up Facebook ads?

There are various different kinds of Facebook Ads and they can appear in a number of places (‘placements’). You can choose to use different formats including photos, videos, carousel adverts (multiple images), or a slideshow. Adverts can appear in the desktop or mobile version of the Facebook News Feed, or in the right column of Facebook for desktop users.

Facebook ad placements desktop and mobile
1. Once you’re logged into Facebook you can start creating your advert from the drop down menu in the top right hand corner.

Setting up Facebook Ads
2. A Facebook Ad campaign is broken down into three levels, called the ‘campaign structure’: ‘campaign’, ‘ad set’ and ‘ad’.
Facebook Ads Campaign Structure
To start creating your ad campaign you need to decide what the overall objective or goal is - this could be to get more views and likes of your Facebook page, increase visits to your website or increase sales of certain products or ranges. Find out more about choosing an objective here.
Setting up Facebook Ads
3. You’ll then set up your advert account. 
Setting up Facebook Ads creating an account

4. The Ad Set is where you can set up parameters for your adverts: choosing the target audience, ad placement, your budget and the schedule for when your adverts should appear.

You can choose the audience for your ad using Facebook’s targeting options these include location, gender, age, and interests. One campaign can include multiple ads sets that have different audience targets, schedules and budgets.

Choosing an audience for Facebook Ads
Your budget will be the total amount that you want to spend daily or over the course of the campaign and you can edit it at any time. You also set a bid that is the maximum amount that you’re willing to pay each time someone sees your advert or takes the action that you’re aiming for such as clicking on the ad or liking your Facebook page.

Setting a budget for Facebook Ads

5. The ad is the actual advert that Facebook users will see and there can be multiple ads in each ad set. Your ad could be an image, multiple images or a video. Creating multiple adverts enables you to see which design or copy choice is performing better, in turn improving results whilst reducing spend. A / B testing is the most common way of doing this.

Choosing the format for Facebook Ads

 You can also advertise directly from your Facebook page by paying to promote your page, your website, boosting page posts or promoting an event. These will make your page, posts or events appear in Facebook News Feeds. Find out more about boosting your Facebook posts and page here.

 Once you’ve setup your Facebook ad campaign your advert will be reviewed to make sure that it meets Facebook’s Advertising Policies - the advert’s images, text, targeting and positioning as well as the content that’s on the adverts landing page will all be checked.

 You should get a response within 24 hours and if it’s approved it will start running. If it’s been rejected you can edit and resubmit your ad or appeal the decision. Find out more about Facebook’s advertising policies here.

How much do Facebook Ads cost?

You decide how much you want to spend on your ads by setting the budget for each campaign as well as an amount that you ‘bid’ to have your ad displayed to your selected audience.

 The ad that is shown to a Facebook user is worked out from a combination of three factors:

  • Advertiser’s bid - what you are willing to spend
  • Estimated action rates - how likely Facebook thinks a person is to take the action that your ad is optimised for, based on their previous actions and your ad’s past performance.
  • Relevance - how interested Facebook thinks a person will be in seeing your ad based on its quality and relevance to them.

Facebook takes into account these three factors in order to display the most relevant advert to the user. This means it’s not necessarily the highest bid that wins. Make sure you spend time creating an advert that resonates well with an appropriate audience for your business, as well as working out your budget.

 How to make the most of Facebook Ads

  • The most important part of a successful Facebook Ad campaign is deciding the purpose - if you know exactly what you are trying to achieve you will be able to create an advert around that to see the results you want.
  • Understand your audience - work out who you are going to target with your adverts before you start creating them so that you can tailor adverts to suit the audience.
  • When you’re creating the advert make sure that it reflects your business. Stick to the essential details, and a direct call to action if you want people to do something when they see the ad.
  • Images or videos should be high quality and easy to understand.
  • The recommended size and number of characters for the ad depends on which objective you choose, find out more here.
  • Test small amounts per day to measure how well different adverts do and what engagement you get so that you can work out which ones work best for your ecommerce business. The overall goal of any advertising is going to be to increase your sales but there isn’t one single type of Facebook ad that can guarantee this outcome so you will need to test different objectives. It’s also worth looking at what your competitors are doing.

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About the author

Verity is a journalist and content producer at Zenstores.

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