It’s easy to see if your Facebook Ads aren’t working. It’s a lot more difficult to diagnose why. Today, we’ll walk through the 10 most common Facebook Ad mistakes and how to fix them. We understand that Facebook ads are complex – that’s probably why you’re here! If you’re not seeing the conversions or return on investment that you’re looking for, these 10 mistakes could be to blame.

1. Selecting the Wrong Objective

The Facebook Ad objective plays a major role in the types of results that you receive. Most people underestimate just how important this is. For example, selecting the traffic objective as opposed to the conversions objective will significantly impact your conversions even if they are going to the same exact landing page. The most important things to consider when deciding which objective to select is what type of audience are you sending these ads to, and what is the true goal of these ads? If the goal is to get opt-ins, scheduled appointments, or purchase conversions, you need to be using objectives like lead generation, potentially messages, or that conversion objective. If this is to simply build an audience, you would use objectives like video views, traffic, or engagement.

2. Not Testing Audiences

With all of the changes that have recently been made, especially with iOS 14, some audiences that may have worked really well in the past are no longer working. It could be that you simply need a new audience refresh. If you’re not actively testing audiences to continue to find the best possible targeting for your ads and your business, you are leaving money on the table. Some examples of audiences that you should be testing are targeted lookalike audiences or super lookalike audiences, as well as behavioural or interest-based audiences.

3. Ignoring Your Warm Audiences

Number three ties right into the audience targeting mistake and this is ignoring your warm audiences. Your warm audiences are people who have engaged with you, who are aware of you and who most likely have some interest in what you’re selling. This group of people is really gonna be made u pof your custom audiences. Too many business owners are not actively targeting their warm audiences on a regular basis despite this audience being the most qualified and the most likely to convert.

4. Sending Ads to the Wrong Destination 

First and foremost, you should never really be sending anyone to the homepage of your website. You want to make sure you’re sending them to a page designed around the offer you are trying to get them to convert on. 

The next thing you may want to consider is your website or landing page load times. People are very impatient and if it’s taking too long to load, you’re gonna be losing a lot of interested parties who simply aren’t willing to sit and wait around. Another great option to test is the lead form through the lead generation objective. Too many people have never really given this option a try. However, if you are attempting to generate leads or scheduled calls, this can be a really easy way to see if your conversion rates could be higher. If you’re selling e-commerce, you could be selling with Facebook and Instagram shops where someone can pay directly through the platform.

5. Having More Than One Call-to-Action

There’s a saying that says a confused mind doesn’t buy and that is absolutely the case. You need to make sure that every single ad you’re running has one clear and concise call-to-action. If you’re trying to get a conversion on a specific product, stop mentioning all of the other products you sell. Keep people focused on the one single action you want them to take or the one offer you want them to purchase.

6. Using the Wrong Budgeting Options

There’s several different budgeting mistakes we see people making, such as using the CBO or campaign budget optimization option when it is not truly appropriate. Unless your audience sizes are very large, this is not a good fit. On that same note, if these audiences or these ads have not previously been tested and proven to work, CBO may not be the best option for you.  

Another mistake we see is that people will set their budget way too low. You’re making it extremely difficult for Facebook to help you find more conversions. You need to make sure that you are setting that budget high enough that it gives the system some wiggle room to really seek out those right ideal buyers, find that data on who is converting and then allow your ads to reach more of those people.

Another mistake would be keeping individual ad set budgets too low. If your ad is working inside of an existing ad set, you’re gonna see better results by increasing that ad set budget,as opposed to spreading that budget out across various ad sets. On that same note, too many people are adding multiple unproven ads into one individual ad set. The way that Facebook works, it’s going to give most, if not all of your budget to one, maybe two of those ads and the amount that they’re getting will not be the same. If those ads have not already been proven, you simply won’t be able to test the rest of them.

7. Structuring Your Ad Account Incorrectly

There are several different ways that this could be happening. A sure fire way to tell is if you look in your ad account and there are hundreds of campaigns inside of it, or if you can’t look at your campaigns and tell exactly which each one is for, the conversion objective, the products and services it’s selling, and what the goals might be for that specific campaign without actually having to look at the ad level.

Another mistake that we just mentioned is having too many ads within one ad set. We highly recommend you to have lots of different ad sets inside of a campaign, but keep one ad per ad set if you want to make sure that ad receives the adequate budget.

Another mistake is having too many campaigns with the exact same objective. Keep in mind that you can add new ads or new ad sets to an existing campaign. The objective simply has to be the same. Organising your campaigns based on their goals is very, very important. We recommend that you structure your campaigns in three different groups. We call them level one, level two, and level three. Ultimately, building your audience is going to be your level one campaigns with objectives like engagement, video views, or traffic. Level two is all about your offer and this is focused on conversions. And level three will be your retargeting ads.

8. Not Testing Multiple Creative Formats 

If you’re not trying a variety of formats, your audience is not going to be able to show you what they prefer or what’s working best. This could include video, but also different styles of video, shorter form versus longer form, maybe animated versus talking head. You also could do things like carousels, which can work very well and are not used nearly enough. You could also test single-image ads if you have not been using those, or even animated style images. An easy way to test out a new creative format is to simply take an ad that’s already working and ask yourself, how could I take this exact same creative, but remake it in a new format?

9. Using Incorrect Tracking Data

Next is critically important to your bottom line, and this is relying on inaccurate tracking data or not even having the necessary tracking data at all. This has become increasingly important after iOS 14 really changed the way our ads dashboard reports our results. Not only is there a delay or an additional delay in those results being reported, they’re also being under-reported right now by about 50% on average. 

Understand Your KPIs

What you need to do is first and foremost, make sure that you understand your own internal KPIs so that you know what great metrics looks like for you. Next, you need to make sure that you have every possible option in place to have accurate tracking, such as using UTM parameters in your ads, either using a third-party tracker or using something like the conversions API. Another way to see the metrics that you actually need to see to be able to determine if your ads are working is simply by customising your columns, which most people don’t even realise is an option.

Validate Results Outside of Facebook

Next, we highly encourage you to validate the results outside of Facebook Ads Manager. Your conversions exist somewhere outside of your ads dashboard, such as in your e-commerce store orders or your scheduling platform if you’re booking appointments, or your CRM if you’re generating leads. That data is there. The question is, can you attribute a lead, an appointment, or a sale to an individual campaign, ad set, and ad? While this can be a little bit more time-consuming, it is worth every single minute. The more educated you are on where your highest paying customers or your actual sales conversions are coming from, the more money you can direct into those ads or those campaigns.

On the flip side, if you assume that certain campaigns are producing financial results and they’re not, you could be wasting money. You also could be missing out on the opportunity to scale the ads that are working, or you could be stealing budget from high-performing ads and giving them to ads that are simply not performing. This is very important to your overall success. So again, if there’s one tip we could really reiterate, it’s this one – have accurate tracking data and pay attention!

10. Not Having a Plan

You need to understand your offers, but also, you really need to dive into Ads Manager with a plan in place in terms of what campaigns you’re creating, what their names will be, what your ad sets will be, the audiences you’ll be testing, the ad copy and ad creative variations you’ll be testing, where you’ll be sending them, and what results you hope to see, as well as the metrics you’ll be tracking for those specific campaigns. If you are going into Ads Manager, creating a campaign and making those choices as you go through your campaign creation, you are leaving so much money on the table. It’s also going to allow your ad copy and your ad creative to be far more effective, impactful, and streamlined across all of the ads in all of the campaigns that you’re running. You want to see your ad account as one single thing that is really tied together and all of those campaigns should be working together in harmony. The good news is all of these mistakes can be fixed, so stay tuned because we’ll be sharing more about budgeting, analytics, tracking, and more!