Facebook Blames Ad Slowdown on Mobile

Says more users access site via mobile, where ads are nonexistent

Facebook is attributing its recent ad slowdown to a complete lack of mobile ad strategy—but that doesn’t mean the social giant is about to dial up the number of ads on its mobile apps.

As part of an amendment to its S-1 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Facebook acknowledged that it doesn’t meaningfully monetize its mobile applications. And since Facebook’s mobile consumption is growing so rapidly, a lot more users aren't seeing any ads on the social media platform. That lack of monetization is hurting the company’s bottom line, according to AllFacebook.

“If users increasingly access Facebook mobile products as a substitute for access through personal computers, and if we are unable to successfully implement monetization strategies for our mobile users, or if we incur excessive expenses in this effort, our financial performance and ability to grow revenue would be negatively affected,” reads the amendment.

That being said, Facebook isn’t the type of company to panic over near-term revenue challenges (at least it hasn’t as a private company). In the amendment, the company even states that “our culture also prioritizes our user engagement over short-term financial results, and we frequently make product decisions that may reduce our short-term revenue or profitability if we believe that the decisions are consistent with our mission and benefit the aggregate user experience and will thereby improve our financial performance over the long term.”

Still, most industry observers expect Facebook to take advantage of its massive mobile ad opportunity soon. Already, some third party vendors like Celtra have introduced Rich Media Stories units, providing brands like Coor’s Light with a back door into Facebook’s mobile app.