5 Reasons Your Facebook Ads Aren’t Converting & How to Improve Them

Facebook advertising is one of the best tools available for audience research and promoting your brand.

But even experienced digital marketers can run into issues with their Facebook advertising campaigns; namely turning targeted traffic into conversions.

At my digital marketing firm, we recently ran into an issue running a digital marketing campaign for a physical therapist.

Despite creating highly targeted ads that drove the desired impression share and clicks, our ads didn’t result in the conversions we wanted.

In this particular case, the client had tweaked his business model to no longer lobby for referrals from local medical physicians in the area and instead relied entirely on digital marketing.

The biggest issues our campaign soon ran into was informing the right customers at the right time for that small sliver of intent we could meet.

Think about it, when you suffer from an accident or chronic pain, you typically go to a doctor before going to a physical therapist.

Sure, we could inform customers and they could click, but how were we supposed to get them into the door?

Fortunately, by switching up our bids, value proposition, and even the very event we were advertising, we were finally able to drum up high-value foot traffic to our client’s physical therapy firm.

The campaign itself was soon used as a nomination for multiple awards in the industry.

Facebook advertising, in conjunction with PPC advertising, is a powerful tool with a tremendous ROI. But to generate a return you need sales.

Here are five reasons your Facebook advertising campaign isn’t generating enough conversions and some creative fixes to significantly increase your conversion rate.

1. You Don’t Have Enough Audience Data

Unlike Google Ads, Facebook Audiences requires you to make judgment calls about your customers and to complete the research upfront before creating a campaign.

Customers don’t come to your ads, you come to them.

First off, many businesses start their campaigns off way to narrow.

If your client has a new business and not very little information to share with you, start off with a broad awareness campaign optimized to the lowest CPC available.

Here, you can start off with about half a million impressions at a modest spend and gather some valuable engagement data, such as who is clicking on your ads and what people, if any, are converting.

Facebook is a very awesome tool, in that it allows you to upload valuable data, such as all your business’s customer email information and data on all of your purchases from the last 30 days.

Some additional areas to acquire audience data include:

  • Google Ads and Bing Ads PPC campaign data (e.g., contact info).
  • Competitive analysis (all advertising channels).
  • Census for local demographic information.
  • Real-time analytics on your site and marketing channels.
  • Surveys and site questionnaires.
  • Psychographic info of people who “like” your business.

You can even use specific pixels for people who visit your site and click on your ads and don’t convert.

As with all advertising, the best way to find your customers is to cast a wide net and see where you failed.

2. Your Targeting Parameters Need More Optimization

The most important part of any campaign is audience creation.

Unfortunately, poorly optimized targeting parameters could mean wasted ad spend.

Think about it, a poorly timed event match could mean the difference between somebody purchasing new jewelry from your business close to their anniversary and somebody merely scrolling past it on any other day of the year.

Worse yet, many businesses go too broad in their targeting and don’t properly account for device usage.

To cut down on targeting errors and to hyper focus your parameters, create a buyer persona and then upload all of the relevant details you can into your custom audiences.

Segment your buyer persona based on three boundaries:

  • Demographics (age, gender, race, income, location, etc.).
  • Psychographics (interests, likes, and lifestyle).
  • Behavior (shares, comments, engagement, and purchasing habits).

Facebook audience creation

Facebook also takes granularity to the next level.

For example, Facebook can help you target ads for baby equipment to people who were recently pregnant or had a kid.

It bases this on personal information that its users choose to share and all of the above information, such as pages they’ve liked and what posts they’ve engaged with the most.

With this, you can get your message on par with the people most likely to appeal to your business.

3. Facebook Users Aren’t Shoppers

And yet, despite all of this, your Facebook users don’t convert.

But unlike Google Ads, Facebook users are not using the platform to shop. They are using Facebook to interact with friends and family and share content.

There’s probably been plenty of times when you’ve engaged with a sponsored post, but not actually made a purchase.

Maybe you purchased from the brand later, but most people aren’t necessarily intent on making a purchase when they click on your ad, especially from a mobile device.

In the example I provided at the beginning, my team used this knowledge to radically change our approach.

Instead, we changed our value proposition and lead form to merely get people to attend a workshop hosted by our client before actually engaging in a consultation.

When conversions are low, consider using Facebook lead ads, video ads, or even dynamic ads for ways to get people into your funnel.

5 Reasons Your Facebook Ads Aren’t Converting & How to Improve ThemFacebook lead ads

4. You Aren’t Segmenting Ad Campaigns

Your ad creative and messaging will only apply to certain segments of your audience.

If your ads are driving a lot of impressions but few clicks and even fewer conversions, consider implementing A/B split testing.

Experiment with:

  • Messaging.
  • Ad creative.
  • Images.
  • Landing page copy.
  • Audience segments.

Creating separate audiences based on different conversion goals and previous engagement can help you create hyper-targeted messages that resonate more.

5. The Problems Run Deeper in Your Funnel

If people are clicking on your ads and not converting, then there could be problems with your website or landing page that run deeper than your ad copy.

Issues could arise from:

Track your conversions using the conversion pixel and your bounce rate using Google Analytics.

Some landing page optimization tactics to resolve a low conversion goal rate include:

  • Inserting high-resolution images and interactive content to keep users engaged.
  • Presenting a clear CTA with an offer (e.g. 50 percent off now or 1st-month free subscription).
  • Removing additional or unnecessary navigation.

How to Improve Facebook Ad Conversion Rates

  • Target users based on previous purchases.
  • Use ‘Lookalike Audiences’ to expand the scope of your campaign once converting.
  • Leverage events targeting for special offers and events.
  • Adjust your value proposition to appeal to different audience pain points.
  • Leverage remarketing for people who bounce from your landing page.
  • Layer targeting parameters for more granularity.
  • Continue to learn more about your customers.

Sometimes it’s keen to look at your business model and determine whether or not Facebook advertising is right for your business or your client’s business.

Using a combined approach of paid social, PPC advertising, and remarketing can help you acquire leads and nurture them for conversions by reaching them over a variety of channels.

More Resources:

Image Credits

All screenshots taken by author, November 2018

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