Page Post Ads in the Facebook News Feed generate 14 percent higher return on investment for companies in the retail sector compared to Marketplace ads in the sidebar, a study from Nanigans has found.
Several other studies have shown the strength of News Feed ads over those in the sidebar, but those studies have often compared Sponsored Stories, which are ads that can only be shown to the friends of users who have connected with the advertiser and they must lead to a destination within Facebook. With its latest study, Nanigans looked at ads leading off-site in formats that could be targeted to any user, regardless of social connections.
Page Post Ads are ads that began as posts on a company’s Facebook page. In this case, the posts were photos that included a link to the retailer’s site in the caption. These can appear within the feed on desktop and mobile. Marketplace ads are the traditional ads in the desktop sidebar, which include a headline, body copy and small image. Note that the examples below are not necessarily Nanigans clients, they’re just used to illustrate the different ad types.
Nanigans found 45 times higher clickthrough rates and 68 percent lower costs per click with Page Post Ads versus Marketplace. Nanigans says the average CPC ranged between $0.14 and $0.26. The cost per action — with actions being registering for the retailer’s site — was 48 percent lower with the Page Post Ads in the feed.
Nanigans also compared the relative performance of Page Post Ads on desktop versus mobile. The mobile version generated 1.9 times higher CTRs than the desktop equivalent. Page Post Ads on mobile averaged 46 percent lower CPCs than on desktop. However, retailers should consider how well their site is optimized for mobile sign-ups or purchases before choosing mobile advertising over desktop News Feed ads.
Nanigans’ study was based on more than 975 million ad impressions from multiple retailers’ campaigns between December 2012 and January 2013.