Open an internet browser or unlock your phone, you begin to feel a tingling sensation in your hand as your left index finger springs towards the centre of the keyboard searching for the “F” key.  If you’re anything like the rest of us, your left hand has learnt to dance around the keyboard spelling “face” with effortless ease. Fear not, you’re not alone, with 1.4 billion active users visiting the platform daily, Facebook has become a cornerstone of the internet experience. With such a high user base, it’s no wonder that Facebook draws in business owners and marketers across the globe with the hopes of targeting their exact audience base through Facebook’s Ad network.

Facebook Ads makes the process of putting together a campaign relatively easy, however there are some added complexities that determine how successful your campaign might be.  If you are running Facebook Ads and not getting the results you are looking for there are a few common mistakes that lead to bad ad performance.

For those interested, we have a workshop in a few weeks at Aeona HQ which looks to cover how to setup your Facebook Ad account, campaigns and ads correctly.  If you are interested in coming a long, check out the link here.  And use the discount code “EAS2018” for a 30% discount.

TLDR – Skip ahead


How do you know if your ad is doing badly if you don’t know how ads are meant to perform?  It’s important to get a bearing on the industry averages so that you can properly audit your own campaigns and improve accordingly.  Fortunately for us, various companies out there have put together some data on the subject, the main attributes of the campaign that we will be look at are the CTR – Click through rate, CPC – Cost per click and the CVR – Conversion rate.

In this instance there is no need to reinvent the wheel, our friends over at wordstream put together a comprehensive article on the subject, if you want to read in even more detail, check out:

Otherwise, let’s look at some of their data below:

CTR – Click Through Rate

Average CTR is 0.9%, meaning that roughly 1 in every 110 view of your ad should result in a click.  This can help you determine whether you should pay according to impressions or click and will also serve to let you know if you need to improve your ad to achieve a better CTR.


CPC – Cost Per Click

Average CPC is $1.72 across all industries.  If you know the conversion rate on your website, then you can get a rough idea of how many clicks you will need to make a sale and thus your can figure out your return on investment.


CVR – Conversion Rate

Average conversion rate, varies massively from industry to industry, but comes in at 9.21%


  • CTR – 0.9%
  • CPC – $1.72
  • CVR – 9.21%

Use these benchmarks to determine if your advertising campaign is actually performing poorly and if it is, read on for some of the reasons why.  Ideally use the metric related to your industry.

Audience Selection

Everyone who has ever launched a campaign should be familiar with the audience selection part of the campaign.  One main reason for ads performing poorly is due to the ads being displayed to the wrong people.  People irrelevant to your ads are unlikely to click them and if they do happen to click them, they are far less unlikely to convert.  With that said, how are you meant to define your audience!!?

There are a few ways you can narrow down your audience to make sure that the right people are seeing your ads.

  • Custom Audience
    • Custom audience allows you to create an audience using data sets provided by either facebook or yourself. Within customer audience, you can upload a customer file, refer to data collected from a facebook pixel or create a list from people who have engaged on your facebook and Instagram.
  • Look alike (in the custom audience section)
    • Look alike allows you to reference an available existing data set to allow facebook to identify similarities and put together a list of similar users to target. This can be very useful if you don’t already have your own existing data set or if you have a list of users and emails collected from elsewhere.
  • Detailed Targeting
    • Detailed targeting allows you to choose demographics, interests and behaviours of users to display your ad to. Initially this can be a little confusing, but with the added help of Facebook Audience Insights (  you can identify key details to focus on.  When you go to audience insights, enter some information on the left hand side such as city, interests, job title etc and then using the right hand panel identify age groups, job titles and the pages that they like.  Use this to define your audience in the detailed section of audience.

Imagery and Content

When designing your ad, it’s important to make sure that your imagery and content is relevant to your industry, audience and the content that you will be serving.  Here are a few tips to make sure that your imagery and content is up to scratch:

  • Use words and phrases that are industry relevant and resonate with your desired audience.
  • Make sure that your titles and ad content isn’t too wordy. Keep it short and straight to the point.
  • Ensure your graphic is suited to your industry and make sure that it doesn’t have too much text in it as Facebook serves these ads less.
  • Make sure that the landing page that people arrive on after they click your ad matches the imagery and content of the ad. If people liked your ad enough to click it, why not make sure that they like the imagery and content of the page they land on.  This will go a long way to help convert.
  • If you are allowing Facebook to serve your ads in different placements, ensure that your graphics and content look good in all of the placements. If not make sure you create different ad sets to suit different placements or edit your ad to look good across all variations.  To see what the ad looks like, in the placements section, if you hover over the placement you should see the example update on the right hand side.

Budget and Bidding and Optimisation

At the end of the day, if you have tried some of the above and are still not getting the results that you are looking for, it could just reflect that your budget and bids are set too low.  Refer to the expectations section for what you should expect from your ads.

In the budget & schedule section there are various elements you can play around with:

  • Optimisation – Make sure that you have selected the optimisation relevant for your campaign goals.
  • Bid Cap – Your Bid cap may be set too low not allowing your ad to be served enough, experiment with increasing this to get better results.
  • When you are charged – experiment with changing this between impressions and CPC , you may end up getting more clicks when focussing on impressions. Give it a go and see what works for you campaign.

Remember to be careful when experimenting with these adjustments as they will inevitably cost you money.  To mitigate potential losses, set your campaign daily or lifetime budget to make sure that you don’t overspend.


As you can see, there are so many factors that can affect the efficacy of your Facebook Ad campaigns, just remember that your campaigns should be looked at as an ongoing project, constantly being tested and improved to make sure that you get the best results.  Don’t give up and stay consistent and eventually you will get the results you are looking for!

For those reading that are interested in coming along to one of our workshops on Facebook Advertising, check out the following link and don’t forget to use the coupon code “EAS2018” for a 30% discount.

Let me know what you thought about these tips and comment below if you have any questions!




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