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6 Simple Ways to Lower the Cost of Your Facebook Ads

Learn how to make your social ad dollars go further with these six quick tips to lower your Facebook ads cost.

Ana Gotter July 20, 2017
Facebook CPC
Image via Olichel under CC0 1.0

Have you ever been blown away by how easy it is to blow through your social media budget before you know it? This is particularly true if you’re running a lot of Facebook ads that aren’t intentionally optimized to have the lowest cost per click (CPC) possible.

A lot of businesses and marketers don’t realize that you don’t have to sacrifice on cost to get results. Instead, the way the system is set up, you’ll likely see lower CPC because you’re getting more results.

Want to learn more? In this post, we’ll teach you how to make your social ad dollars go further with these six quick tips to lower your Facebook ads cost.

Bonus: Download a free guide that teaches you how to turn Facebook traffic into sales in four simple steps using Hootsuite.

6 tips for lowering the CPC of your Facebook ads

1. Understand your relevance score

Your relevance score will directly affect CPC, so it’s important to watch it carefully and understand it.

Facebook CPC

Facebook ads will provide a relevance score on every campaign you run. As the name suggests, this score tells how you relevant your ad is to your target audience.

We don’t know the exact algorithm Facebook uses to calculate it, making it a black box metric, but we know that positive interactions like engagement, clicks, and saving the ad will improve the score, while hiding the ad will lower the score.

Facebook prioritizes ads with high relevance scores, and will actually lower your CPC if you have high scores. This lowers the cost of your ads, sometimes significantly. Because of this, you should be watching all of your campaigns’ relevance score, and either adjust or stop campaigns that have scores on the lower end.

2. Focus on increasing CTR

Increasing click-through rate (CTR) will increase your relevance score, and thus lower your Facebook ads cost.

  • Some of the best ways to increase your ads’ CTRs include:
  • Always use desktop newsfeed ad placements, which generate higher CTRs.
  • Use appropriate CTA buttons. “Learn More” will sometimes drive more clicks than “Shop Now” for cold audiences that don’t trust you yet.
  • Write simple, clean copy that gets right to the point and doesn’t leave users guessing at what they’re clicking on or why they should.
  • Keep your frequency (or the number of times the same user sees the same ad) as low as possible. If frequency gets too high, your CTR will fall.

Facebook CPCImage source: AdEspresso

Without a doubt, though, the most effective way to increase your CTR is to run highly-targeted campaigns for niche audiences. Which brings us to our next tip…

3. Run highly targeted campaigns

Running highly targeted campaigns gives you a distinct advantage: you know exactly who you’re targeting, so you can craft ads and offers that you know that they’ll be receptive to. A comedy club, for example, might have the best luck showing ads of Jim Gaffigan to more family-friendly audiences, for example, and ads of Amy Schumer to women age 18 to 35.

Facebook CPC

You can use different targeting options like age, gender, location, interests, and even behaviors to create iron-clad audiences. Under behaviors, for example you can target specific device owners, people who are having an anniversary within the next two to three months, and users who have recently made business purchases.

Any group of people that you’re trying to target, you can find with Facebook’s incredible targeting system.

Facebook CPC

4. Utilize retargeting

Retargeting is a practice of showing your ads to users who are familiar with you and your product. Because this is a “warm” audience, they’ll be more likely to interact with or click on your ad, increasing CTRs and lowering CPC.

You can create custom audiences off those who have interacted with your Page, your site, and your mobile app.

Facebook CPC

You can even use retargeting to send a follow-up ad to users who had previously watched the majority of your video ad that was showed to a cold audience, increasing the likelihood that they’ll click since they’re somewhat familiar with your ad.

You can also use custom audiences from your email list for retargeting. Whether you’re showing ads to users based on their past purchases or past engagement on your site, you’ll know your relationship with them up front. This can help you create ads and offers that they’ll be most interested in.

5. Split test images and copy

You should A/B test everything if you want to keep your CPC low. It doesn’t matter if you’ve come up with the most genius offer ever—you still need to split test it. Create different versions of the same ad campaign that use different images, videos, and copy (both in the description and the headline).

Facebook CPC

Not only will this help you see what your audience actually prefers, allowing you to run the campaigns with higher CTRs and pausing the ones that are lackluster, it will also keep your ads fresh and interesting to the users who see them. This keeps frequency down, engagement up, and your spending low.

6. Only target Facebook’s desktop Newsfeed

There are exceptions to this—both Instagram Ads and Facebook’s mobile ads are more effective when the objective is mobile app downloads or purchases. That being said, desktop newsfeed ads on Facebook have consistently higher CTR and engagement rates than other placements (possibly thanks to the larger pictures, longer descriptions, and ease of desktop navigation). This, in turn, increases relevance score and lowers the cost of your ads.

Facebook ads automatically enables a number of placements, including Instagram ads and mobile newsfeed ads. You’ll need to manually disable these by manually unchecking the placements.

Facebook CPC

To turn mobile placements off, choose “Desktop only” in “Device Types.”

Facebook CPC

Facebook ads can eat through your social budget, but with some strategic adjustment, you can actually pay less for your ads and get more results at the same time. By focusing on increasing your engagement, and CTR, you’ll boost your relevance score and lower your ads cost in the process. There’s no catch-22. The higher your ad performs, the less they will cost you. This is a great incentive from Facebook to deliver a great system to both users and marketers, and it’s clearly effective.

Get the most out of your Facebook ad budget with AdEspresso by Hootsuite. The powerful tool makes it easy to create, manage, and optimize Facebook ad campaigns.

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By Ana Gotter

Ana Gotter is a business writer specializing in social media and content marketing, though she writes on an array of other subjects.

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