You may have heard this question before: “How can I get more for less?” or perhaps some variation like “How can I increase traffic for the same budget?” or “Why can’t I scale my Facebook campaigns efficiently?” Those questions are exactly what I hope to address here, so you can walk away with simple action items to boost your Facebook campaign traffic without throwing tons of extra budget at it or sacrificing efficiency.

Defining The Problem

If you have a basic understanding of digital marketing you are probably familiar with the basic metrics used to define success: the initial interaction with a user and the end goal…or in other terms the click and the purchase/download/sign up/etc. But what about everything else that happens in between those two things?

This is where I see some marketers struggle on Facebook ads. There are campaigns that drive a large volume of clicks (traffic campaigns) but don’t provide immediate value beyond that. Then there are campaigns that drive value but sacrifice traffic (conversion campaigns optimized for the end goal like a purchase) So let’s hone in on conversion campaigns. If that is where our value is coming from, what can we do to scale them without decreasing KPIs like ROAS?

How to Increase Traffic Without Sacrificing Revenue

Let me establish this first, what I am going to suggest should be used on prospecting/upper funnel audiences. What is that suggestion? Find something to optimize your conversion campaigns for that lies in between a click and your end goal. You may think I am talking about optimizing for a landing page view…I actually want you to go deeper.

What steps does a user have to take in order to convert? For Ecom it might be click->add to cart->purchase.

If we’ve established that optimizing for clicks gives low value while optimizing for purchases gives low traffic, what about optimizing for add to carts?

To test this theory, I set up a split test in Facebook targeting a high-value prospecting audience. Half the audience was optimized for a purchase and the other half was optimized for an add to cart. The results of this test are below.

facebook split test results optimizing for different goals

To summarize those results: for the same spend as purchase optimization, the add to cart optimization reached more people, drove more clicks and add to carts, and resulted in near similar ROAS. Sure you could argue that purchase optimization had cheaper cost per purchase and slightly higher ROAS. But let’s go back to what the goal was here…to scale, to increase the volume of traffic. Yes, while technically we “sacrificed revenue”, it was so small I’d argue it doesn’t matter in this situation. Prospecting audiences should be focused on introducing your business and filling your remarketing audiences. The add to cart optimization did so more efficiently without truly sacrificing much of anything.

Tips and Reminders

The above example obviously applies to Ecom. But the theory and thought process behind it will carry over to other business models. Think through your potential customer’s path to conversion. See if you can find something to turn into a “soft conversion” which you can optimize towards. That conversion should always be a valuable action that you would want to remarket to.

Speaking of remarketing, if you do optimize your upper-funnel campaigns for a soft conversion, make sure to analyze how that impacts your conversions on lower-funnel audiences. Then compare holistically on your full funnel. Does optimizing for a soft conversion in the upper funnel improve your marketing mix overall?

As with all recommendations you read on the internet, be sure to test it out before doing major implementations. What worked for me may not work for you, and that’s ok. But you’ll never know for sure until you test it.

Looking for More Information About Facebook?

Check out 4 Tips For Facebook Catalog Sales Campaigns Efficiency by Bahador, to learn how to maximize your spend on dynamic ads run through Catalog Sales campaigns.

Want to learn how to streamline your Facebook reporting so you can free up time? Read Noah’s article  An Intro To Custom Reporting in Facebook Ads.