What Are Facebook Ad Placements: How To Choose The Best?

Facebook is one of the most profitable social media platforms in the world to market your brand using advertisements.

In fact, Facebook Ads beat their Google counterpart by a mile.

Over the past years, the social media giant has improved its advertising algorithms and added tools to help businesses make the most of their money.

You can easily manage your advertisements with a plethora of filters, tools, and settings.

Facebook allows you to create Ads, track their performance and execute your strategies to achieve specific goals from your target audience.

While most brands understand the criticality of Facebook Ads, every so often they miss out on certain settings that reduce the effectiveness of their Ads.

One such setting is Facebook Ad placement.

Facebook allows you to choose the location where you want to display your Ads. This’s a critical area because if you pick the wrong placements then your advertisements won’t perform as expected.

Say, you wish to show your ads within a piece of content. To achieve this, you must use the Facebook instant articles placement. But if you pick a different placement, for instance, Facebook Audience Network placements, your ads will appear on third-party apps and sites.

Every Facebook advertising campaign focuses on a unique goal.

This means you can’t choose the same placement for all the advertisements.

Hence, it’s critical to understand all the placements Facebook offers before activating your campaigns.

In this article, we’ll discuss all the Facebook Ad placements and learn a few pointers to choose the best placement.

Let’s get started…

What are Facebook ad placements?

At the Ad set level, Facebook lets you choose where you want to show the Ads.

Depending on your choice, your advertisements can appear on Facebook, Instagram, Audience Network and Messenger.

You get two options at your disposal.

The first option is automatic placements, and the second is manual placements.

Automatic placements

Automation Ad placements allocates your Ad set budget to give you the lowest CPC and the best audience optimisation across all the placements.

This means Facebook will spend more of your budget on Ads which are performing great in a particular placement.

Although Facebook suggests advertisers to go with automatic placements, it isn’t necessarily the best choice and may lead to a difficult distribution of the Ads.

But you can use this placement if you are just starting out. It will help you learn insights where your Ads are performing the best and then move to manual placements.

Manual placements

Manual placements let you choose the specific location where you want to show your advertisements across Facebook’s platforms.

This option gives you the freedom to choose the placements that you think are going to produce the most results.

Using the manual placements, you get to show mobile-only or desktop-only ads.

If you choose to show the Ads on both mobile and desktop, you must optimize the Ads accordingly.

Pro Tip: A combination of placements increases the likelihood of reaching more audience.

Different Facebook ad placements

Let us discuss distinct Facebook Ad placements to understand which one serves the best for a particular goal.

In this section, we’ll go through the placement options Facebook provides you.

Facebook marketplace

The Facebook Marketplace placement is a feed placement that displays the advertisements on the homepage of the Facebook Marketplace and when a user visits the marketplace using the Facebook application.

This placement is great for companies whose audience look locally for exciting deals. When you choose this option, the Ads also appear in the Facebook news feed.

Facebook news feed

The Facebook News Feed placement shows your ads in a users’ desktop news feed and/ or mobile news feed.

The desktop news feed ads appear as normal Facebook posts and hence are appealing to the audience. You can use this to your advantage to promote offers on your products.

The mobile news feed ads appear to users browsing Facebook on their smartphones and tablets via the application or a browser.

This is a great placement because you can use it with all 12 advertising objectives offered by Facebook.

Facebook video feeds

This placement shows your Ads in Facebook’s suggested video feed and the Watch feed. You can use this to promote engaging videos about your product/service.

For instance, if you wish, you can educate your customers about your new product with a quick “How-to” video.

Messenger inbox feed

By choosing this placement, you tell Facebook to show the advertisements in your audiences’ messenger home tab between conversations.

This’s a great way to communicate and advertise to previous customers because when a customer clicks on the shown advertisement, they see the full Ad within the Messenger platform.

Users can also click on any associated links or CTA’s completing an action.

Instagram feed

Instagram is one of the biggest social media platforms in the world and is a Facebook company.

Hence, you can choose the Instagram feed placement to show advertisements to people using the Instagram application and users browsing Instagram on their mobile and desktop browsers.

Instagram explore

Instagram Explore helps people find content, accounts, and businesses relevant to their interests.

Here, Instagram suggests you accounts you aren’t already following. Hence, it’s a great way to attract potential customers.

The Instagram explore placement shows the advertisements in the explore page targeting the specified audience.

Facebook right column sponsored

The Facebook right column sponsored placement is a desktop-only placement. This Is why most brands don’t use this placement often, but you can use this to re-market to customers.

Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger stories feed

The stories feed placements allow you to leverage the massive audience actively engaging with stories.

You get to choose from three further platform options: Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger Stories.

This placement shows your Ads in the stories feed of your target audience on the platform of your choice.

While Facebook and Messenger stories are great, Instagram stories feed placements are the most effective.

Facebook in-stream videos

The Facebook In-stream videos placement lets you showcase advertisements before, during or after a video content.

You can go with 5-15 seconds video ads which users can’t skip.

This means they have to watch the entire advertisement, increasing the likelihood of engagement.

You can use this placement to promote brand awareness.

Messenger sponsored messages

The Messenger sponsored messages placement lets you create message Ads.

If you have previously had a conversation with a customer, you can send advertisements as messages to them.

Hence, this placement works for only a specific audience segment.

You can use it to re-target customers, promote new offers or reveal product updates.

Facebook search placement

The Facebook search placement shows advertisements when a user searches for keywords relevant to your Ads.

While this’s a great way to reach a wide audience, you don’t get to choose the keywords. Facebook decides the keywords that’ll trigger the advertisements.

The company uses a combination of features such as ad text, product category, title, and description to show the Ads.

Facebook instant articles

Facebook Instant articles load 10 times faster than standard mobile websites. This helps publishers to direct their audience to instant articles on Facebook.

Using the Facebook Instant Articles placement you can show advertisements within the articles which typically appear between paragraphs.

You can use this placement to re-market to customers and reach a wider audience at the top of your sales funnel.

Facebook audience network

The Facebook Audience Network lets you showcase advertisements on third-party apps and sites.

You get to choose from three placement options within the Audience Network.

1. Native, banner and interstitial placements similar to Google display advertising.

2. Reward video ads, which lets users watch advertisements for reward in an application.

3. Audience Network in-stream videos that behave the same as Facebook in-stream videos placement.

The cost-per-click on these placements are low, and you can use these to increase the Ads reach.

Best Facebook ad placements for various objectives

The placement of your Facebook advertisements depend on their effectiveness in achieving the desired targets.

But there are a few go-to placement options you can use depending on your campaign objective.

Awareness campaign

This campaign focuses on generating awareness about your brand among the target audience.

For instance, introducing your business to people whose interests match with your product/service.

You can use the following placements to get the best results:

  • Facebook feeds and Stories
  • Instagram’s feed, Stories and Explore
  • Messenger Stories
  • In-stream videos

Consideration campaign

This campaign focuses on influencing consideration of your target audience.

For instance, engaging the audience with activities/resources that help them understand how your product/service might solve their problems.

You can use the following placements to get the best results:

  • Facebook feeds
  • Instagram feeds, Stories and Explore

Conversion campaign

This campaign focuses on pushing the audience to make a purchase or generate revenue for your business. For instance, offering an exciting offer, free products or discounts to entice the potential customers to make the purchase.

You can use the following placements to get the best results:

  • Facebook feeds, Marketplace and Search
  • Messenger Sponsored Messages Placement
  • Instant Articles
  • Instagram feeds, Stories and Explore

Conclusion

There you have it. Now you know all about the two types of Facebook Ad placements and how you can use manual placements to get the most from your Facebook Ads. You also know the various manual placements, their functions, and objectives.

Choosing a combination of relevant Ad placements is crucial to the success of any Facebook advertising campaign. Hence, you must understand the various placements and choose according to your desired goal.

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Paco Vermeulen

Paco Vermeulen is a Facebook advertising expert, with over 8 years of experience. Prior to starting his entrepreneurial journey he gained experience as a digital marketer, growth marketer and CMO. He is a MSc Marketing graduate from VU University Amsterdam.

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