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Why Should E-Commerce Pros Care About Facebook Dynamic Ads?

Dave LeDonne

I know what you might be thinking. Who has time to worry about Facebook dynamic ads? Consumers don’t even go to Facebook to shop anyway. They go there to stalk stay in touch with friends and share cat videos.

Hang on right there, because that’s where clarification is needed. The best e-commerce pros always have an ear to new opportunities for innovation — and Facebook dynamic ads is one of them. Here’s why.

1. Just because consumers don’t intend to shop on Facebook doesn’t mean they won’t.

No one types a product name into Facebook’s search bar hoping to find retailers that sell that item. Like most social networks, Facebook lacks consumer intent. But that doesn’t mean consumers won’t shop at all on Facebook. 

Adopting dynamic ads now is an opportunity to start claiming share of a channel that could become a big part of every e-commerce pro’s marketing efforts. This is the time for innovation — the time to experiment, determine best practices, and create strategy ahead of competitors.

If a consumer has been looking at a product several times over the past day, and he’s ready to buy it, and you show that consumer an ad for that product in his Facebook feed, there’s a good chance he’ll pull the trigger.

Our testing of Facebook ads has shown that when users were identified by Sidecar’s technology as displaying this high-intent behavior, they are up to four times more likely to convert than an average visitor. The key is being highly relevant — and more relevant than your competition.

2. Facebook has the most mature advertising platform of all major social media channels.

Little known fact: Facebook has been running advertisements since its inception in 2004. The company’s advertising operations have come a long way since then. Facebook’s ad revenue reached $4.3 billion in Q3 2015 — an increase of 45 percent from the prior year. For context, Twitter’s Q3 ad revenue was $513 million, an increase of 60 percent year-over-year.

Facebook’s dynamic ads have also been available longer than other social networks’ direct response units, and they’re specifically built for e-commerce. YouTube introduced product ads in May 2015. A month later, Pinterest introduced buyable Pins and Instagram rolled out its “Shop Now” button. Then Twitter broadly rolled out its “Buy Now” button in September 2015. Facebook, however, introduced dynamic ads last February.

Facebook’s size and scale gives it a major advantage over other social networks that offer direct response advertising. The company’s ad operations are growing quickly — and still have a lot of headroom.

3. Facebook has the large and growing mobile user base that retailers need to get back in front of consumers.

When consumers don’t buy on your e-commerce site, you have to get back in front of them. Increasingly, the mobile channel — specifically Facebook’s mobile app — has the audience needed to do that.

Consumers spend on average 68 hours monthly on their smartphones, according to comScore’s 2015 U.S. Mobile App Report. Eighty-seven percent of the time, consumers are in an app, as opposed to a browser. And what’s the #1 mobile app? Facebook. Mobile monthly active users totaled 1.39 billion as of Sept. 30, 2015.

That’s a tremendous audience to leverage, and advertisers are recognizing the value of it. Mobile ad sales drove 78 percent of Facebook’s third quarter ad revenue, up from 66 percent in the prior year.

So What Does All This Mean for E-commerce Pros?

Facebook has the wherewithal to continue investing heavily in the technology needed to reach consumers with targeted, relevant ads. At the same time, advertisers are showing that they have strong and growing confidence in Facebook’s ad platform.

Adopting dynamic ads now is an opportunity to start claiming share of a channel that could become a big part of every e-commerce pro’s marketing efforts. This is the time for innovation — the time to experiment, determine best practices, and create strategy ahead of competitors.

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