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Keeping Up With Facebook: What Are Dynamic Ads?

One of the most popular ad formats on Facebook and Instagram Advertising is dynamic ads. These ads display across both platforms and retarget past visitors to your website or app with data-driven ads promoting your brand or product(s). Their versatility in display–they can run across more than a half dozen placements—make dynamic ads a powerful remarketing tool for retailers.

In this installment of Keeping Up With Facebook—a series that highlights the latest updates to Facebook and Instagram Ads—we explore dynamic ads for Facebook and Instagram, their different ad formats, and why they are important for your retail business.

Release Date:

Facebook released dynamic ads for retailers in 2015. Facebook expanded the placement of these ads on Instagram in 2016.

What It Does:

Dynamic ads for Facebook and Instagram re-engage past website or app visitors with ads that display brand messaging or shoppable products. Data from these visitors is collected using a Facebook pixel added to the retailer’s website to track traffic and conversions at the product level.

Using this info, ads tie pixel data to a visitor’s Facebook and Instagram feed. This makes previously viewed or purchased products display within these ads. There are three types of dynamic ads on Facebook and Instagram: single image ads, carousel ads, and collection ads.

Facebook dynamic ads

These types of ads place across various areas of a user’s Facebook and/or Instagram account. Possible placement includes the Facebook feed, right column, Instant Articles, Marketplace, Stories, Messenger Stories, Audience Network, Sponsored Message, and Messenger Inbox. Dynamic ads can show on the Instagram feed and Stories.

Which Channels:

Dynamic ads can be used on Facebook and Instagram Advertising.

What It Means for Your Business:

Advertising on Facebook and Instagram is ideal for retailers that want to fulfill several different objectives on both platforms. All three ad formats work to meet unique business goals. Single image ads can increase reach, brand awareness, traffic, and engagement. Because carousel ads use multiple images within each ad, they can drive more clicks, lead generation, conversions, and catalog sales. With collection ads, you can showcase your product inventory to improve traffic, conversions, and store traffic.

Rather than manually create retargeting campaigns, these ads automate the process using the Facebook pixel. They are designed with engagement in mind; users who have previously taken action on your site will see recommended products within these dynamic ads on Facebook and Instagram. The intent is to re-engage these visitors, feed them relevant, personalized product ads, and convert them into customers.

These ads also expand beyond retargeting purposes. Rather than focus on visitors and purchasers that have taken action on your site, broad audience ads serve relevant ads to users on Facebook and Instagram that haven’t visited your site. Facebook’s algorithm reviews users who liked pages and browsed specific products to match your broad audience ads with them. For more information on dynamic ads for broad audiences, read our Keeping Up With Facebook article here.


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