Companies Are Making $Millions on Facebook

We’ve all heard the stories of people making millions selling on Facebook. But the harsh reality of all these success stories you hear is that they’re normally outliers. In fact, most Facebook Ad Campaigns fail to yield profitable results, let alone make millions. And that’s because they were doomed right out of the gate.

Is it all just hype?

We’ve all heard the hype — “Selling on Facebook is your path to success!” “There are so many people on there, and there are hundreds of data points to connect you with your ideal customers!” “All you need to know is your audience, craft your messaging/creative accordingly, and the money will start rolling in!”

It’s true – knowing your audience does help any marketing effort, but most the time this isn’t enough.

What if you have a wide audience your product(s) is a fit for? How do you segment your audience into smaller segments and retarget accordingly? Or.. what if you’re just starting out online and you haven’t quite nailed the targeting, or you simply don’t have any social awareness that sets you apart from your competitors?

Where do you start? How do you optimize your setup so you don’t lose valuable data and waste your ad-testing dollars? How do you setup custom audiences on Facebook so you can properly retarget and lead visitors to a purchase?

Whether you’re currently running Facebook Ads yourself in-house, looking to get started, or have the project in backlog, there are a few things that make-or-break you from the start. And it has nothing to do with the actual ads themselves. In fact – achieving success with Facebook Ads will depend on successfully laying the foundation with 3 core pillars.

The 3 Core Foundational Pillars of Facebook Marketing

1. The Facebook Pixel isn’t properly set up
2. Schema data isn’t installed, or complete
3. You haven’t broken out your audience into retargeting segments

In fact, most the time my agency, GrowthInc, takes on a new client, or we audit a company’s Facebook Account/website, we can usually attribute failure or missed opportunities to these 3 pillars. That’s why having them properly set up and running smoothly determines the difference between a positive or negative Return on Ad Spend (ROAS); and ultimately determines the scalability of your ad Campaigns.

PILLAR # 1 – Proper use of the Facebook Pixel

By now, you’ve probably heard of this, or perhaps it’s still a foreign concept, but if you’re going to sell on Facebook or Instagram the FB pixel is vital to any successful campaign. Furthermore, properly having it set up is the key to intelligently segmenting your audience, stretching your advertising budget, and allowing you to take advantage of easy wins with retargeting ads.

Simply put – the Facebook Pixel is a little snippet of code that you can copy/paste onto your site, that tracks relevant actions performed by your website visitors (e.g., viewing content, adding something to the cart, purchasing, etc). It’s what provides Facebook with the data it needs to properly optimize your ad delivery… and is what allows you to make informed decisions to improve your campaign performance and truly leverage Facebook’s algorithm.

When it comes to improper installations of the FB Pixel, there are 2 main buckets that companies typically fall in. 1 – It’s not installed at all, or 2 – the base pixel is the only thing installed (i.e., there are no standard/custom events codes installed on your site).

Let’s focus on number 2, because let’s face it, if you don’t even have the pixel installed to begin with, you might as well know there’s more to the set-up that just installing the base code.

Setting up the Facebook Pixel

Now some platforms have a native integration with FB (e.g., Shopify), so setting up the base pixel is pretty straightforward. However, if you need to install the pixel yourself and you go to your FB Ad Account or Facebook’s Business Manager to do it, you are guided to install the pixel base code (a few lines of javascript), into the header or HTML area of your site.

This is what tells Facebook that one of its users has just visited your website. But it doesn’t tell it any other important actions like whether you added something to a wishlist, to the shopping cart, entered payment information, or actually made a purchase.

For Facebook to segment your audience based off these types of actions, you need to set up what’s called standard events (you can even create custom ones), and this isn’t part of the initial setup. It’s another step entirely that’s needed, and one many overlook (even seasoned developers).

It is in the same area that you set up the initial pixel, but you must make sure you choose to set up standard events. More importantly, you must know where to install them on your site.

For instance, you would want to install the “Purchase” event code on the Thank You page (or confirmation page) of your site, not on the payment page itself. Why? Because you know that the only way for someone to hit the “Thank You” page, is for them to have actually purchased something. It distinguishes people who have purchased from those who have not.

Once you have the Pixel and standard events set up properly on your site, you now have the power to segment your audience based on interest level and key actions taken by your visitors. Furthermore, you can create ads specifically targeting visitors based on these actions (we’ll get more into this when addressing Pillar #3).

If you’d like one of our experts to audit your Website to see if the pixel is properly installed, book a FREE audit here →  Audit Booking Form

PILLAR #2 – Installing Schema.org data on your eComm Store

Schema.org is an open source effort used by the likes of Google (think SEO), Yahoo, Yandex, Microsoft (Bing), etc, to create a structured way for search engines to read the data on your website. It helps these platforms understand the information on your web pages so they can provide better, richer results to people searching for information.

It’s a form of microdata used in the HTML code of your site that creates an enhanced description of your products or services. It allows you to tag the most important elements or attributes of a page, so search engines can better serve more relevant results. You can ‘tag’ things like Names (e.g,), Phone Numbers, Addresses, Logos, Product Images, Product Descriptions, Price, Product Availability, Reviews, etc.

Facebook now uses this information as well for it’s Ad Platform. In fact, this microdata has become such a vital part of Facebook that if it’s not properly installed, your ads will suffer and FB eCommerce ad features, like Dynamic Product Ads (DPAs), will not function as they should.

One of the most powerful features Facebook offers to eCommerce stores on its ad platform is their Dynamic Product Ads. If you haven’t heard of these, DPAs basically allow you to automatically promote products to people who have expressed interest in your online store. To do this it uses Schema on your website to match products in your product catalog. DPAs might simply be the highest ROI ads for eComm stores.

Large companies like Wayfair are using DPAs to automatically reach huge audiences with personalized recommendations from their catalog, and are allowing them to beat their customer acquisition targets by 20% at scale.

When properly set up, DPAs are automagically shown to the right people for each product and allows Facebook to distinguish pricing and availability. It allows you to show people products that are tailored to their interests (whether they’ve been to your site or not), allows you to retarget your shoppers with ads to remind them of items they viewed but didn’t buy, and allows you to reconnect with shoppers across devices (from mobile to desktop and vice-versa), despite where they originally shopped.

This is why having Schema properly installed on your site is so important to achieving success with your Facebook Ads.

Smaller stores like ASOS (a mobile-first fashion retailer) increased orders by 3x by showing shoppers richly personalized ads based on what they’d looked at in the past.

PILLAR #3 – Segment your audience on Facebook with Custom Audiences

Properly segmenting your audience by engagement level and their respective position in the customer lifecycle allows you to improve targeting and deliver relevant ads to prospects at the different stages of the buying cycle. It allows you to nurture your audience from awareness-to-consideration-to-purchase.

Many eCommerce stores don’t utilize this feature or properly set up all the relevant audiences. And this causes your ad spend to increase, you miss out on easy wins (you’re more likely to convert a warm prospect than a cold one), and it causes you to miss out on delivering a highly targeted ad at the right time.

Granted – being able to properly segment your audiences is dependent on properly setting up your Facebook Pixel. But once this is done, you can go into your Audiences section of Business Manager (or your Facebook Ad Account) and create “Custom Audiences”.

Some examples of custom audiences that are useful:

  1. People who visited Landing Page in last 5 days, 10 days, 30 days, etc
  2. People who viewed 3+ products in last 3 Days
  3. People who Added products to Cart
  4. People who entered payment information
  5. People who Purchased
  6. Etc

You can create custom audiences with different time frames, and create ads accordingly. In fact, you get more specific with your targeting in Ads by including one Custom Audience and excluding others. E.g., [Include] People who Added Product to cart in last 5 days, {Exclude] People who purchased in last 30 Days.

Tying it all together

These 3 Core Pillars: Facebook Pixel, Schema, and Custom Audiences are vital to having a successful Facebook Ads Campaign. By focusing early on the foundations of tracking and setting up your website, you position yourself to extend your marketing budget and increase your Return on Ad Spend. It allows you to build the foundations that lead to utilizing more advanced tactics, and properly leverage Facebook’s 2 Billion user base.

If you need help getting this properly set up, or would like an audit of your website and/or Facebook Ad account, you can book a FREE Strategy Call with our Growth team here → Strategy Call Booking Link

Also – feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn – https://linkedin/in/justinsharpe

Justin Sharpe

Justin Sharpe

I help eCommerce Brands and Online Coaches scale profits (4-10x return) with Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn Marketing, Ads, & Website Conversion Rate Optimization! Connect with me on LinkedIn -> https://www.linkedin.com/in/justinsharpe/

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