Website Custom Audiences – Remarketing via Facebook Advertising
Published: April 7, 2014
Facebook’s introduction of Custom Audiences of website visitors has helped advertisers generate remarketing lists to be used in the Facebook advertising system. Over the past year remarketing via third-party friendships (Facebook Exchange) has been the only remarketing option available on Facebook. But now the network allows you to create the remarketing via its advertising system, in a type of remarketing known as Website Custom Audience, or WCA.
What is a Website Custom Audience?
WCA is Facebook’s new remarketing version. You might have already noticed it; did you happen to log on to a certain website, then saw its ads everywhere? Well that’s remarketing. It’s nothing new, but it’s becoming ever more common on Facebook.
The remarketing process, in short, is as follows: you visit a website or a certain page of it and the brand you have visited can display some ads associated with your visit at other sites. In the case of Facebook, it means the network can display ads relevant to your internet browsing behaviour.
Here’s how it works:
1. You enter a landing page.
2. A cookie at this page lets Facebook know you’ve been there.
3. The advertiser adds you to an audience list customised to their Facebook advertising program.
4. Facebook displays an ad while you are logged on to the network.
What’s the Difference between FBX and WCA?
FBX is a real-time bidding (RTB) system, excellent for advertisers who want to buy ad-stocks in real time, with the cost and segmentation most suitable for users. The system also allows to segment users by their browsing habits, as well as by data obtained from your website (first-party data + third-party data). Another major advantage is the option of creating dynamic ads, customised to the products viewed by the user.
So let’s say we have seen a leather jacket; Facebook will then feature an ad of the very same item with 10% discount, turned into a 20% discount a week later, or offering free shipping to boot. One of the simple FBX tools was Facebook remarketing, but it was exclusively for desktop browsers.
You could say that WCA spells a revolution, as far as online remarketing is concerned. While Google remarketing offers exclusively mobile ads for mobile browsers, or exclusively desktop ads for desktop browsers, WCA allows you to perform cross-device marketing, reaching browsers that originally accessed your website with their mobile phones through an ad on their desktop-as soon as they log on to Facebook. This channel opens up endless options. It will to allow to bring in very low-cost users via mobile ad campaigns, later making them buy through desktop ads.
On top of that, WCA allows us to exclude users who have visited our site from seeing our ads, a major advantage in various ways: 1. excluding anyone who has purchased on our site from our ad circle. 2. excluding anyone who’s entered our landing page from the ad circle and displaying a different ad exclusively for these users. This tool shall boost the number of clicks per ad, thus maximising the profits from any Facebook campaign you may launch.
And yet, the greatest advantage of WCA lies in its advanced segmentation possibilities. You can segment users by traffic source (using a tracking parameter for anyone directed from Google, for example), thereby paying more for anyone who is directed from Google and hasn’t made a purchase. You can also distinguish between desktop and mobile traffic, as well as between visiting times (the cookie is valid for up to 180 days). This means that those who visited the website seven days ago shall see different ads than those who visited it 30 days ago, which would boost conversion rate. In fact, in my experience with this tool, the clicking rate proves very high on the desktop (up to 6%/7% in some campaigns!), while conversion rate is very high when compared to ordinary campaigns. That means this tool has the lowest conversion cost (CPA) of all available Facebook ad-tools, allowing to increase the return on investment (ROI).
Another advantage of WCA (available only for those who work with Facebook advertising partners – PMD companies) is the option of creating events on the website, which would in turn add user to a specific list. For example, if you’ve got a shopping website, every time a user adds an item to the shopping cart, he/she is entered into a list, and if the sum total of all items exceeds $1,000, for instance, they will be entered into an independent list (of those justifying a higher CPC).
Another big advantage of WCA is the ability to place the pixel in more than one website, thereby targeting people that visit websites of a similar content to yours.
A Few Notes about WCA:
1. One pixel per account.
2. At the moment up to 200 different lists can be generated (eventually this number will be unlimited).
3. In the future, Facebook’s conversion pixel is going to be part of the remarketing pixel (with a slight adjustment to the code), merging into a single tool.
4. The pixel can be used with a third-party system, to embed pixels such as the Google tag manager.
Any questions? Feel free to ask away in the comments section!