At this point, you’ve almost certainly seen Facebook Carousel Ads in your newsfeed.
They’re highly engaging and can be very effective sales generators for certain businesses.
I’m a big fan of using carousel ads to promote e-commerce businesses, and in my opinion, the carousel ad should be the go-to format.
Of course, you can’t paint all companies with the same brush and it would be irresponsible to say that carousel ads are guaranteed to be the winning ad format for all e-commerce businesses.
But if you’re running a Facebook ad campaign for an e-commerce business, I would strongly recommend that you test them.
Let’s start with the basics…
What are Facebook Carousel Ads?
Here’s Facebook’s definition:
“The carousel format allows you to showcase up to ten images or videos within a single ad, each with its own link. With more creative space within an ad, you can highlight different products, showcase specific details about one product, service or promotion, or tell a story about your brand that develops across each carousel card. The ad format can be used by any business to accomplish a variety of ad objectives.”
Here’s an example that Facebook provides of MVMT watches:
Why Carousel Ads are Effective for E-Commerce Businesses:
- Display multiple products
As you can see from the image above, carousel ads allow you to advertise multiple products at once.
The advantages of this are obvious. Not all your customers are going to be interested in the same product.
If you use single image ads and only advertise one product at a time, it would cost you a lot more to get the same number of products in front of the same number of people.
Nearly all e-commerce businesses offer multiple products and carousel ads are a much more effective to display a product range.
- Link to each product directly
It’s a well-known digital marketing principle that the easier you make it for people to do something, the more people will do it.
With Facebook carousel ads, you can link each image directly to the purchasing page on your website for that specific product.
That makes it so much easier for your customers to see a product they like, click the ‘Shop Now’ button and immediately purchase that product.
Here’s another image Facebook uses as an example that demonstrates this:
- Square images
As you can see from the examples in this article, carousel ads display images in a square format.
Displaying images in this way can cause some issues and it’s important to make sure that the cropped images show your products properly…
But it does mean that carousel ads take up more space in the Facebook newsfeed.
This is obviously a good thing. The more space your ad occupies, the more likely it is to be noticed.
And because you pay for Facebook advertising on an impression basis, this extra space doesn’t cost anything extra.
- Interactivity encourages engagement
Interactive ad formats lead to more engagement.
If you can click it, swipe it and move parts of it around, people will do so. And this can lead to a lower cost per click, which of course reduces overall Facebook advertising cost.
Facebook also want to ensure that their advertisers don’t ruin the user experience with annoying ads.
High ad engagement show Facebook that your ad is being well received by you target market and they will reward you with a lower CPM (cost per thousand impressions).
- Multiple Images Reduces Ad Fatigue
One of the massive advantages Facebook has over other ad platforms is the ability to be ultra-specific with who you’re advertising to.
Most Facebook advertising experts will tell you to start by targeting a very specific audience that only contain people that are highly likely to be interested in your products and services.
That strategy will reduce your cost per lead and sale but it can also mean you predominantly advertise to small audiences, particularly if you operate on a local basis.
If there aren’t many people in your target audience, all of them will be shown your ad quite quickly and potentially multiple times.
When that happens, ad fatigue kicks in and your campaign’s performance will significantly drop as a result.
Carousel ads usually offer multiple products and use different images to do so.
This obviously helps prevent ad fatigue and allows you to profitably advertise to the same target audience for long.
Bonus Tip: Facebook can automatically show your best performing images first. Make sure you turn this feature on to get the most out of your carousel ads: