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Here’s the exact way you should be setting up your FB retargeting ads funnel


Have you ever wondered whether you’ve set up your Facebook retargeting funnel in the right way? After all, you want to make sure you’re taking advantage of all the website traffic you’re receiving from your ad campaigns.

By now, you should have already set up the Facebook pixel on the specific pages you need. And you should have already set up the right pixel events to fire when specific actions take place: landing page view, add to shopping cart, cart abandonment, initiate checkout, purchase, etc. and now you’re ready for remarketing. 

Setting up a retargeting funnel on Facebook is easy enough, but to be able to usher customers along their buying journey while ensuring they see the right message and offer takes experience and thoughtful planning.

In this article, I’m going to show you the exact way you should be setting up your Facebook retargeting ads funnel.

Exclude, exclude, exclude

If you haven’t done so already, you need to create a custom audience or audiences of the people who you want to exclude from your remarketing campaign.

The most important thing for any facebook retargeting ads funnel is to exclude any custom audience who has already passed a certain part of your funnel, may not be the right fit for a certain category of products, or a customer list that don’t need to see the advert again. You only want to target people who make sense to target. 

For example, let’s say you’re running a 17-second video ad at the top of the sales funnel and retargeting anyone who has watched 95% or more of that video.

Once a prospect has seen 95% or more of your video, you’ll want to go into Facebook ads manager and exclude them from that ad set as they have already seen your video, and serving it to them again is a loss in ad spend that could be spent on a new prospect.

Instead of reshowing a video ad they have already seen, you may want to show them an offer to a product. If they then go on to buy that product, then unless it’s an item you buy weekly, you’ll want to exclude them from seeing any more ads as they have already bought the product.

A Facebook retargeting campaign is all about taking a prospect from awareness to consideration to purchase. Once they go through to the next stage, there is no need for them to see content from the previous stage.

Having exclusions set up in your entire Facebook advertising retargeting funnel minimizes ad spend waste and keeps your prospects interested in your product or service because they do not see the same message over and over again.

Think about your retention windows

In ecommerce, each shopper has their own needs, wants, and objections about your product. For that reason, in facebook remarketing, your retention windows need to accommodate shopping behavior.

A retention window is the amount of time after visiting a website or viewing an ad that you retarget a potential customer for. 

For example, let’s say you’re selling yoga mats online and run Facebook ads. A sample retention window for website visitors may look something like this:

  • 0-3 days after visiting your website – no offer, just an advert to buy your mat at full price
  • 4-7 days after visiting your website – 10% off voucher off their first order
  • 8-12 days after visiting your website – 15% off voucher off their first order
  • 13-20 days after visiting your website – 20% off voucher off their first order plus free shipping

Typically, if a Facebook user has landed on your website, they are a warm lead. They clicked on your ad and are now looking at your products. 

If they are ready to buy at this point, they may not need an offer. This subset of users is usually only a small percentage of your remarketing audience; the majority will still be researching in their decision-making.

The further out they are in your retention window, the less likely it will be that they will re-visit your store as they’ll forget or may not be so interested in your product. This is when offering a bigger promotion to those further out in your retention window will increase conversion rates.

In Facebook remarketing, the retention windows you use for your retargeting audience should be based on the ticket price of your items and your ad budget.

For example, when buying small-ticket items like t-shirts and accessories (under $20), very few people spend weeks thinking about their decision. For these items, people who are in your retention window of 7-14 days would be your target audience.

Larger ticket items (over $500), on the other hand, aren’t impulsive buys, and often the buyer may need to consult others before making a purchase (husband or wife, business partner, work colleague, etc.). For these items, you would want to create longer retention windows and perhaps even add an extra layer to your funnel before pitching an offer.

Your budget for your Facebook campaign also plays a role in your retention windows. For example, if you only have $2,000 per month to spend, then chances are you won’t have the budget to run retention windows over 30 days.

On the other hand, if you’re spending $50,000+ per month in your Facebook marketing campaign, then you may want to retarget people all the way up to 180 days.

There is no default model to follow with retention windows as they are unique to your product and service.

Start by figuring out how long it takes the average customer to purchase from viewing your first ad and base your retention windows around that.

Creatives need to be fresh

The more you spend on Facebook retargeting ads, the more creatives you’ll need. 

If your retention windows are 180 days, then when a prospect reaches the next facebook retargeting ads window and hasn’t made your desired conversion action, you’ll need to serve them unique creatives each time or otherwise, you’ll fall victim to ad fatigue.

Having large retention windows but not enough creatives to fill them is a big leak I see in many Facebook retargeting funnels for businesses.

Retargeting like a pro

The secret to Facebook retargeting ads is to truly understand your customer journey.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • On average, how long does it take to turn a prospect into a first time customer?
  • If prospects aren’t interested in your main offer, which secondary items are most popular?
  • How often do customers reorder?
  • Do prospects require further touchpoints in your funnel before being shown the main offer?

Take an in-depth look at your Facebook retargeting ads funnel and see where you can make improvements to drive more sales.

Facebook Ads,

This article originally appeared in the MuteSix blog and has been published here with permission.

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