Since the Facebook Exchange went live, we’ve been fielding questions from hundreds of the world’s largest e-commerce and travel advertisers. And while we’ve gotten nearly every question in the book when it comes to retargeting on Facebook, we’ve noticed that there were several that kept coming up. So we decided to revamp our new FAQ section and, in the process, honed in on the top 10 questions the world’s largest direct marketers ask about the Facebook Exchange.

1. How does Facebook Retargeting work?

Let’s look at the example below. Jane is looking for pink high heels on After browsing several pink shoes, Jane finds a pair she likes but doesn’t buy.The next time Jane’s Facebook page reloads, your third-party demand side platform (DSP) makes sure that wins the bid for an ad on Jane’s page. Jane sees and clicks through on the ad for that specific pair of shoes and purchases. That’s retargeting at work.

how fbx works

2. What is the Facebook Exchange (FBX)?

Facebook’s ad exchange officially launched September 2012. Through a DSP like Triggit, advertisers bid in real time for Facebook ad impressions, some of the web’s most valuable inventory. The Facebook Exchange is a great direct-response channel as advertisers use their own first-party data to find and retarget their site visitors on Facebook.

3. How does Facebook Exchange compare to traditional exchanges?

After running tests comparing Facebook Exchange ads against above-the-fold ads on top-quality pages on traditional RTB exchanges, we found that not only did the Facebook Exchange outperform in terms of conversions, but it delivered much better ROAS. We also found that the Facebook Exchange was better in terms of:

– Inventory: The Facebook Exchange will be over a 1/4 of all internet ad impressions once in full production.That’s 2-3x more than all other exchanges combined, including Google’s.

– Above the Fold: There’s no fold! Facebook ads follow users up and down the page, so your ads will always be in view.

– Efficiency: On average CPAs on the Facebook Exchange are 1/3 cost of the best inventory available on traditional exchanges.

– Recency: A majority of people who visit your site see your ad on Facebook within the first hour – sometimes in the first five minutes.

– Time on site: Most of your customers – over a billion people worldwide – are parked on Facebook and are browsing on the site all day long.

4. What is a dynamic creative ad?

Dynamic creative ad units are relevant, personalized ad experiences you can offer to your potential customer when advertising online. These ads can be used to showcase products and services your site visitors expressed interest in when last browsing on your site. The ad unit contains a customizable headline, image, and body copy.

5. Should I use a dynamic creative or a static ad when retargeting my site visitors?

We can’t emphasize enough how much better dynamic creatives perform vs. static ads. Not only have we seen 43% higher CTR at 1/3 of the CPA with these highly-relevant ads but we have seen conversions happening 30% faster.

6. Are there different types of dynamic creative campaigns to retarget customers?

Yes, Triggit offers two highly advanced ways of dynamically retargeting your potential customers:

– Product feed-based dynamic – The ad unit is created automatically by pulling information from a website’s product feed. This type of offering is best utilized by large e-commerce & retail businesses.

– Macro-insertion dynamic creatives – The site passes information via a pixel to Triggit, whereby we create highly relevant ads on the spot (e.g. A user completes a flight search on the site and the site passes back the query information to Triggit).

7. Is there a best position to bid for on the Facebook Exchange?

Facebook Exchange ads perform well in any position; unlike AdWords, winning the top spot isn’t necessary to see great performance. While AdWords’ CTRs plummet after the 1st and 2nd positions, performance of Facebook Exchange ads remains high because Facebook’s gotten rid of the fold – the ad units scroll up and down with the user. (For more information, visit our Data Insights page.)

8. What are the specifications and format for a Facebook Exchange ad?

The same a standard marketplace ad – 99 x 72 pixel banner ad with a 90 character body text and 25 character title.

9. How are Facebook Exchange ads different from Marketplace Ads?

While they use the same ad format, Facebook Exchange ads and Marketplace ads are two different products.

– Marketplace ads are focused more closely on upper-funnel marketing activities, such as branding and awareness. These ads utilize Facebook’s demographic data, and are focused on increasing an advertiser’s visibility on Facebook.

– Facebook Exchange ads use the same format but, unlike Marketplace, are used to retarget an advertiser’s own site visitors using the advertiser’s 1st-party data (not Interest Graph data). The service Facebook Exchange ads offer is mainly for bottom-funnel, direct-response advertisers who want to increase conversions through retargeting.

10. Can I retarget on mobile platforms with the Facebook Exchange?

Not at this time.


To learn more common terms, visit our new Glossary page. Still have a question you need answered about FBX?  We’d love to hear from you! Feel free to leave us a comment or suggestion below.

1 Comment

  1. Matt Maurer May 2nd, 2013

    Great Article Prachi! I had a couple of those questions myself and your writeup was very helpful. Way to represent the Minnesota migration to silicon valley! :)

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Prachi Mishra
Prachi Mishra is a Marketing Manager at Triggit, where she explores her passion for data-driven marketing. She discovered the world of online advertising after working in Category Management for General Mills. Prachi graduated with a BSB from the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management, where she studied marketing.