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Comprehensive Guide to Facebook Ad Placements [2022]

Comprehensive Guide to Facebook Ad Placements [2022]

Ever wondered if using automatic placements is just enough? Learn to get the most out of your budget with Facebook Ad placements.

An average individual sees from 6 000 to 10 000 ads per day — the number has doubled since 2007. Overwhelmed by the immense flow of information, users were forced to develop the so-called "Banner Blindness", which literally means ignoring multiple ads.

So now, just launching an ad campaign is not enough. It's vital to launch it effectively! One of the tools that can put the ads to the most effective places is ad placement.

This article will help you understand why it's crucial to choose the correct ad placement, the potential problems when choosing the wrong placement, and which placement to select for each business aim.

So let us dive into studying each type of placement and their most effective usage in detail.

What are Facebook Ad placements?

As for 2022, about 4 billion ads are viewed on Facebook every day. The number is constantly growing. So it's not surprising that users try to ignore the majority of ads they see. According to the most optimistic estimates, an advertiser has a maximum of 3 seconds to catch their attention. Thus, it's vital to ensure that your ads appear in the right places.

It's where Facebook Ad placements come in handy! The setting allows defining the places to run ads. Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and Audience Network are the platforms to pick from, but there's much more than choosing the one from the list.

By developing a thorough approach to targeting ad placements, one can significantly boost their effectiveness, thus decreasing costs and increasing the chance of reaching the right audience.

Can I use automatic placements?

When you create an ad campaign in the Ads Manager, you can either pick the ad placement manually or allow Facebook to do it automatically. Facebook always recommends using Automatic placement, and it surely can be the best choice for you.

The placement is most convenient if you lack experience working with the tool. Besides, you can let Facebook optimize for you when you have high budgets or when you're on the scaling stage. It can become your magic wand if you have a conversion or a conversion-based objective (lead generation, conversion, app installs).

Apparently, an easier way to choose placement contains a considerable drawback. After IOS 14 updates, it started restricting your analysis of placements and thus doesn't allow using those which work best.

Placements

The idea is that each placement brings you different ROAS while having diverse CPM. By experimenting with them, you can determine which are most effective. When you get enough data, you'll be able to set placements manually so that they can bring you the best results.

Thus, if you're planning to get the most out of your limited costs and want to be in control of where your ads are being shown, we advise selecting Manual placements.

Now, when you're aware of their top benefits, it's time to learn the types of Manual placements in detail and clarify which will suit your business aims most.

Objectives and formats

To start with, it’s essential to notice that not all placements support all objectives. The chart below gives comprehensive data about all the placements and their corresponding objectives and formats.

Objective Facebook News Feed Instagram Feed Facebook Marketplace Facebook Video Feeds Facebook Right Column Instagram Explore Instagram Shop Messenger Inbox Facebook Groups feed Instagram Stories Facebook Stories Messenger Stories Instagram Reels Facebook In-Stream Instagram In-Stream Reels Overlay Facebook Search Results Messenger Facebook Instant Articles Audience Network Native, banner, and interstitial Audience Network rewarded videos
Brand Awareness image, video, carousel image, video, carousel image, video, carousel video - image, video - - - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel image, video video video video - image, video, carousel - image, video, carousel - -
Reach image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel video - image, video - - image image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel image, video video image, video image, video - image, video, carousel - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel -
Traffic image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel video image, carousel - image image, carousel - image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel image, video video video, carousel, collection - image, video image, video, carousel - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel -
Engagement image, video image, video - video - image, video - - - - - - - video - - image, video, carousel - image, video - -
Page Likes image, video - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Event Responses image, video - image, video, carousel - - - - - - - - - - image - - - - - - -
App Installs image, video, carousel image, video, carousel - video - image, video - image, carousel - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel image, video video image, video, carousel - image, video image, video, carousel - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel video
Video Views video video video, carousel video - image, video - - - video, carousel image, video, carousel video video video video - image, video, carousel - video video -
Lead Generation image, video, carousel image, video, carousel image, video, carousel - - image, video - - - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel - - image, video - image, video image, video, carousel - image, video, carousel - -
Messages image, video, carousel image, video, carousel image, video, carousel - - image, video - image, carousel - image, video, carousel carousel - - - - - - image - - -
Conversions image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel video image, carousel image, video image image, carousel image image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel image, video video image, video, carousel, collection - - image, video, carousel - image, video, carousel image, video, carousel video
Catalog Sales image, carousel, collection image, video, collection image, video, carousel - image, carousel image image image, carousel - image, video, carousel, collection carousel - - carousel, collection - image, video image, video, carousel - - image, carousel -
Store Traffic image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel - - - - - - image, video, carousel, collection image, video, carousel - - - - - - - - - -

Platforms and placements

Feeds

The ads appear to people who scroll through their desktop or mobile feeds. Usually, about 60-70% of clicks come from this category.

  1. Facebook News Feed

    This placement undermines that ads appear on the desktop news feeds (when Facebook is accessed from the desktop) or mobile news feeds (when reached from mobile).

    Facebook News Feed is one of the original placements. It’s also the most popular and effective and is used in most cases.

    Facebook News Feed
  2. Instagram Feed

    Similar to the previous group, these ads appear in the user’s feeds. However, they emerge only on the Instagram platform opened on mobile.

    Instagram is the top growing social network with over 1 billion active users per month. The fact makes this choice the second most popular. Furthermore, it often becomes the top variant when the target audience is highly engaged on the platform.

    Instagram Feed
  3. Facebook Marketplace

    The ads appear on the Marketplace home page or when a user browses Marketplace in the Facebook app.

    Marketplaces are perfect options for eCommerce companies aware of their target audience searching locally for deals on low to mid-priced items. But it should be avoided by those who work with high-value items or service-based businesses.

    Facebook Marketplace
  4. Facebook Video Feeds

    If you choose this placement, your ads will appear in the video-only surrounding, more specifically on Facebook Watch and Facebook News Feed.

    This up-and-coming type of placement is easier to connect with as compared to photos or text. Besides, it’s highly cost-effective as it helps to build the audience, which can be easily remarketed in the future.

    Facebook Video Feeds
  5. Facebook Right Column

    Ads placed on Facebook Right Column are less commonly used because they appear only on desktop. However, you shouldn't immediately dismiss it, as the placement may become a good option for remarketing.

    Besides, eCommerce brands often successfully implement it to remind users about goods previously placed in a cart. So, they retrigger users' attention and increase purchases.

    Facebook Right Column
  6. Instagram Explore

    This placement gives you an easy way to involve clients interested in products similar to yours. After they interact with a post on the Explore page, they’ll start seeing particular topical ads.

    According to the statistics, about 50% of Instagram users choose Explore to find interesting content. However, ads do not appear in the Explore feed directly.

    Let's take a design bureau as an example. A user enters Instagram Explore and starts scrolling through the feeds connected to interior design. They come across something interesting and click on the feed to open it wide-screen. Afterward, they don't switch back but continue scrolling other feeds in the wide-screen mode. It's where the ad launched by our design bureau will appear.

    Such placement makes ads less intrusive and more engaging, as the users who enter the Explore mode switch their minds to discovering new information.

    Instagram Explore
  7. Instagram Shop

    This placement allows positioning your ad in the Instagram Shop tab.

    Similar to Facebook Marketplace, it shows your ad to the people who are potentially interested in the product.

    Instagram Shop
  8. Messenger Inbox

    Messenger Inbox placement positions an ad on the Messenger Home tab in-between conversations.

    It’s most helpful when you need to connect with potential or existing customers and promote your campaign objectives and goals. Yet, overall, the placement shows slight effectiveness and brings only a small percentage of clicks.

    Messenger Inbox
  9. Facebook Groups feed

    If you choose the placement, your ads will show near community posts in the Facebook Groups tab. Available only on the mobile version, it's suited for single image ads. To use the option, you must additionally select the Facebook News Feeds placement.

    Facebook Groups feed

Stories and Reels

Stories and Reels placement is the option that has experienced massive usage lately. Although it's available on Facebook, Instagram, and Messanger.

The vertical, full-screen format lets your business share photos and videos in a convenient, easy-to-perceive format.

  1. Instagram Stories

    Instagram Stories is the most popular option for this placement. It allows you to choose different formatting options. Thus, you can select between a video that plays up to 15 seconds, a photo that plays for 5 seconds, or a carousel, that allows choosing three different pieces of content.

    Instagram Stories
  2. Facebook Stories

    Facebook Stories are much like Instagram stories. The option offers about 300 million daily users worldwide, making it the second most common option within the placement. The additional reason to use it is that it allows selecting the same creatives as for Instagram.

    However, the two also have some differences. The most significant concerns the age groups involved on both platforms. Thus, Instagram is primarily youth-oriented. About 60% of its users are people under 30 years old. At the same time, the mass of Facebook users involved is above 40. Furthermore, Facebook generally attracts well-off people. Above 70% of its users were reported to be more financially sustained than those on other platforms.

    Facebook Stories
  3. Messenger Stories

    The option is overall less commonly used. However, it can contain valuable benefits for retargeting as people are more engaged when they enter Messenger stories, and the competition rate is overall lower here.

    Messenger Stories
  4. Instagram Reels

    Similar in their format to the Instagram Stories ads, Instagram Reels open new perspectives for advertisers. They allow creating ads up to 30 seconds in length, which can also be liked, shared, saved and commented on by the users.

    Instagram Reels

In-Stream

When using this option, you place your ads before, during, or after an initial video. The 5-to-15-seconds video format allows you to present your content by implementing it during the Facebook videos.

The issue with In-Stream placement is that it interrupts users from watching their preferable content. Thus, the engagement rate here can be considerably lower.

In-Stream

Reels Overlay

When people watch the main content, your ad appears as a sticker occupying a corner of the window.

The placement is effective and can become vastly popular future because it allows showing the information without disturbing the main content (the issue with the In-Stream ads).

Reels Overlay

Search

Relatively new (introduced in 2019), this placement allows people to see your ad when searching for products similar to yours.

So, this placement doesn’t allow advertisers to choose the keywords for their ads, thus considerably restricting their control. The task is performed by Facebook, which analyzes and shows ads based on several features: product category, title, description, and ad text.

Search

Messenger

This type of placement allows creating message ads in Messenger. Nevertheless, messages are delivered only to those users who have already engaged with you.

So, this placement helps to reach only a narrow audience, which may be suitable for retargeting. However, it isn't the option if you pursue involving a new audience.

Messenger

In-Article

Instant Article is the fast-loading page hosted within Facebook that doesn’t require transition to any outer pages. It allows showing your ad within the original content chosen by a user.

Like with in-stream video ads, the engagement rate may be lower here as the ads interrupt the initial content interesting for a user. However, the placement can be helpful for remarketing, especially when combined with the right column and feeds options.

In-Article

Apps and Sites

The placement allows positioning your ads on third-party apps and sites. It proposes three subtypes to select from. Native, banner, and interstitial is the most common choice that allows displaying the ads in a format similar to Google ads.

Native, banner, and interstitial

The second subtype is reward videos. When you choose it, your ads appear as exchange videos, for watching which users can gain some reward in their initial apps.

reward videos

Finally, the third subtype concerns Audience Network In-Stream videos. Overall, the type is similar to the In-Stream videos, except it is shown on external websites and not directly on Facebook.

Audience Network In-Stream videos

Apps and sites placement is overall a good option if you use an awareness campaign objective to get cheap impressions. However, it’s not the best choice if you don’t want your product associated with articles and sites of uncertain quality. Besides, the placement won’t bring you as high conversion rates as other choices because external apps involve fewer users than other platforms.

Let’s sum up

Facebook allows a wide variety of placement options for you to benefit from your campaign. Simultaneously, it always recommends using Automatic placement. Indeed, the choice can be helpful in some cases, especially if you don’t have enough data about what works best.

However, only selecting Manual settings grants you complete control over your ad campaigns and budget. So, don’t fail to analyze which placements suit you best. Thus, you’ll get the most by spending the least.

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