Facebook’s native advertising is outperforms on both desktop and mobile in terms of click-through-rate (CTR) and cost-per-click, according to new research from Adobe.
Adobe examined the performance of various Facebook ad placements and ad types from April to June 2013, based on aggregate customer data from Adobe Media Optimizer.
The research represents more than 150 billion ad impressions across more than 50 advertisers worldwide.
Key findings include:
• The click-through rate (CTR) on newsfeed ads shown on desktops was more than 14 times greater than that of standard right-hand-side (RHS) ads, with comparable cost per clicks (CPCs).
• The performance of newsfeed ads on mobile devices was even better, with a CTR 28 times that of RHS ads, and CPCs 42% lower.
• The daily impression frequency for newsfeed ads was considerably lower for desktop newsfeed ads (by 62%) and mobile newsfeed ads (by 66%).
• The CTR advantage of newsfeeds ads over RHS ads became five times and eight times greater on desktop and mobile, respectively.
Adobe specifically reviewed Facebook newsfeed ads on desktops and mobile devices (see chart below).
Adobe’s findings indicated that the click-through rate (CTR) of desktop newsfeed ads was more than 14 times greater than that of standard right-hand-side (RHS) ads, with comparable cost per clicks (CPCs). It found the performance of newsfeed ads on mobile devices was even better, with CTR being 28 times that of RHS ads, and CPCs 42% lower.
Adobe also found the daily impression frequency (the number of times a post from a Page is displayed) was considerably lower for desktop newsfeed ads (by 62%) and mobile news-feed ads (by 66%). Overall, the report found the CTR advantage of newsfeeds ads over RHS ads became five times and eight times greater on desk¬top and mobile.
Note: When comparing CTR, it is important to note the diffeence in impression frequency across different types of Facebook ads. Facebook limits the number of insertions for newsfeed-type ads for individuals on any given day, which means that the native frequency is lower than that of standard RHS ads.
Analysis of Facebook Ad Type Performance
Additionally, Adobe compared the performance of different ad types available on Facebook today. Although Facebook announced in June it will be reducing the number of ad offerings by the end of the year, there will still continue to be a large performance difference across the various ad options available.
Here’s what the report found:
Inline Events (an event posted on your Page) and Inline Fans (the number of people who like your Page) provide social context to standard RHS ads on Facebook, allowing direct
engagement on the ad itself as well as showing which friends have already engaged with the ad.
The report found that an Inline Event ad has 24% higher CTR compared to standard ads, and the CTR for Inline Fans is 72% higher.
When accounting for impression frequency (measuring daily unique CTR), Adobe found that Inline Event context gives very little CTR lift, while an Inline Fan context adds 43% to the CTR over standard ads.
“Likes” Yield Results
For all types of Sponsored Stories including “Like” stories and page post stories, CTR was much higher than standard ads. For “Like” stories and page post stories, the CTR was 21 times and 25 times greater than standard RHS ads, respectively.
CPCs for Sponsored Stories is also less expensive than standard ads, netting around 40% lower for both “Like” stories and page post stories, and 23% lower for other types of Sponsored Stories.
From the analysis, Adobe saw the perfect connection between ad type, placement and context working together to deliver results to our customers. Based on this data, we can recommend specific areas where marketers can optimize their investment in Facebook ads.
• Content Placement Matters. Daily unique CTR for desktop newsfeed ads is five times greater than that of standard ads. Mobile newsfeed ads are even better with eight times greater CTR. Of course, CPCs are also cheaper, which means there may be room to invest further in newsfeed placements. However, newsfeed ads have stricter caps on insertion/impression frequency compared to RHS ads, which limits scalability.
• Ad Type Variability Exists. Daily unique CTR on Sponsored Stories (which Facebook will be phasing out as a standalone offering) is six to nine times greater than that of standard ads, also with cheaper CPCs.
In the report summary, Adobe said: “We are encouraged by the results our customers have seen through the use of these Facebook ad types. Takeaways such as these continue to validate our belief that creative and data work together to drive results through the social channel.”
Read the full report here