Facebook’s increasing effort to maximise users’ time on the platform

11 Apr 2017

Alice Rowell

The average webpage has grown 317% amount in the last 6 years (Keycdn) meaning slower loading times for users. When linking to a website through Facebook adverts this can cause a very frustrating user experience, increasing the likelihood of a user navigating away from the website and not returning.

Facebook are slowly combating this problem for several reasons, firstly to improve the site experience for its 1.86 billion monthly users by providing more engaging, seamless services. Secondly, to ensure advertisers are confident spending within the platform, as Jennifer Shaheen states “the more users can do without leaving Facebook, the less they’ll leave, which means more ad revenue for Facebook”. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, so that Facebook can gather more data on a much more granular scale on individual users activities and interests.

I’ve outlined below three ways in which Facebook is delivering this change to advertisers.

Firstly, lead gen adverts were introduced mostly to increase to scope in which B2B advertisers can operate on Facebook, luring them away from LinkedIn advertising which has itself only just introduced lead generation adverts. They provide advertisers with an opportunity to capture the information needed from the customer quickly and easily using auto-fill for contact details and selected questions. As Facebook themselves suggest lead ads are all about “connecting people with businesses in just two taps”.

Secondly, Facebook’s newest advert – the collection advert – allows users to browse up to 50 items on each advert without being directed to your website until the user knows which item they would like to view in more detail. With these items appearing alongside an eye-catching video, this is a really visual way to grab the attention of users.

The third way, and perhaps the most innovative, is the recent use of messenger. Whilst advertisers can now deliver a generic advert straight to that user’s messenger inbox, advertisers can now use messenger for customers to shop and pay without ever leaving the app. Although the latter is only available in the US at the moment. Pizza Hut US, whose mobile revenue accounts for around 80% of digital revenue (Chen, 2016) use the messenger chatbot to allow users to reorder and pay within the messenger app.

Ultimately, these new advert and content sharing options offered by Facebook provide a much more engaging experience for users and therefore an environment where they are more likely to part with their details if your aim is to acquire leads or to purchase. Likewise, ease of use to customers will always be a big selling point and certainly lead adverts and messenger purchasing provides this. Additionally, retargeting engaged users will generate a much lower cost of sale, be it through retargeting those who have clicked through the site or those that have interacted with one of your adverts.

If you’re struggling to engage your audience and would like to learn how R.O.EYE can help, please contact me on alice.rowell@roeye.com.

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