How To Optimize Your Carousel Ads On Facebook

Consumers love interactive content. And that’s why marketers create carousel ads on Facebook. These fun and engaging ads are great to help you promote your business. According to Kinetic Social, they can actually drive up to 10 times the traffic to advertisers’ websites as compared to static ads. 

They also get a 72% higher click-through rate as opposed to single-image mobile app ads. So if you’re looking to get increased engagement, conversion, and returns, carousel ads on Facebook are a must.

What do carousel ads on Facebook look like?

When you create carousel ads on Facebook you can display up to 10 images or videos on what are called cards in a single ad. Carousel ads are very effective not just because they encourage your potential clients to interact with the ad, but also because they give you a lot more room to showcase your products and services in one go. This is why this type of ad is such a huge hit among e-commerce businesses.

Below are the specs that you need to know in order to set up your carousel ads on Facebook:

  • Image/Thumbnail size: 1080 x 1080 pixels
  • Image/Video aspect ratio: 1:1 (square)
  • Text: 125 characters
  • Headline: 40 characters
  • Link description: 20 characters
  • Number of cards: 2-10
  • Image file size: 30MB max
  • Video file size: 4GB max
  • Video length: Up to 240 minutes

How to create engaging carousel ads on Facebook

Want to create carousel ads on Facebook that get the most engagement possible? Here are some tactics that you can try out:

Tell a story 

Integrate storytelling into your marketing campaigns and your audience will have a harder time ignoring the messages that you want to deliver. It is easier for people to ignore general stats and data because all they do is trigger the logic centers of the human brain. Most of the time our actions are driven by emotion and don’t tend to be rational by nature.

So when you share a story through your ads, it drives a powerful emotional connection. Find ways in which you can add emotional appeal into your carousel ads on Facebook, in a way that will pique the customer’s interests.

Pura Vida Bracelets drove website sales, by partnering with Sum Digital to create a carousel link ad featuring lifestyle photos. As a result, orders increased within 2 months of running these ads!

Do a showcase of your products 

The way in which carousel ads on Facebook rotate makes them ideal to display a product showcase. This can focus on one particular product, that you can create action segments for by displaying it from different angles, or with different use cases.  

Or you can try the very popular approach of featuring your most popular product, followed by others which complement it. You’ll want to base this on the purchase history of your customers. Below is such an example, by Target.

How-to content that offers high value 

When you create carousel ads on Facebook, you have the option to display progressive information (i.e. multiple steps). In this scenario, rather than trying to push a transaction to happen, you can focus on building awareness of your products, educating potential buyers of their options, and/or how to use your product.

How-to content allows you to emphasize the value you offer through your product. For example, Tyme Hair makes a combined curling iron and hair straightener. Their target audience would be used to purchasing 2 products to complete these 2 processes. So they decided to create carousel ads on Facebook to show how exactly their product works. Each step had a corresponding image that showed consumers clearly how they could benefit.

Use your ads to feature key content 

If you are a brand that offers more services than products, or don’t offer products at all, you can still create carousel ads on Facebook to promote your business. In this case, you’d be best off using the carousel ads to promote your top-of-funnel content. 

By doing so you can position yourself as a  thought leader in your niche, and build trust with potential customers. You can use metrics from your content to identify your best performing pieces and repurpose them for your ads. This in turn will help you bring in organic traffic and generate leads. It will also help move prospects deeper into your funnel as they learn about the value that you have to offer. 

Precision Nutrition decided to create carousel ads on Facebook to share articles from their website. In the example below, they have shared 3 pieces of content about healthy eating for athletes. From this ad, they received 6000 newsletter signups. And in comparison to single-image link ads, Facebook’s carousel format led to a 50% decrease in cost per lead and a 50% increase in the click-through-rate.

Choose visuals that stop scrolling 

The news feed on Facebook is very cluttered – we all know that. Whether you’re a consumer or a marketer you’re getting slammed with visuals. And it is a constant fight for a business to get their content to the very top. At the same time, you need to be able to get customers to stop in the middle of their scrolling to view your ad.

Whatever the type of the carousel ad is that you have created, the first image that you display to your customers is the one that should be the most powerful visually. It doesn’t need to tell the whole store in one go. It simply needs to stop customers in their tracks.

Most of the time restaurants and food brands have nailed this approach, with close up images of their ingredients and most popular dishes. Foodpanda did something very similar and got a 180% lift in conversions from their audience.

Create a feedback channel with carousel ads

Carousel ads on Facebook are a great way to promote a line of products, while you are also getting feedback. You can use your ads to pose questions to your audience – e.g. “which color palette do you like?” or “which style style is best?” Through these ads, you’ll be able to reach a much wider audience than your existing customers. And you’ll be able to get invaluable feedback to incorporate into how you continue to promote your products.

Share a panoramic that encourages engagement

When you create carousel ads on Facebook, the images don’t have to just slide from one option to the other. Many brands actually use carousel ads to slice up one large and attractive image into a panoramic. By taking one attractive image and splitting it up into many different images, you pique your audience’s curiosity.  In turn, they’ll slide through the complete carousel ad and finally get to the call to action in the last image of the sequence.

Here are Facebook’s instructions for creating panoramic Facebook carousel ads: 

  • You can decide how many carousel ad images to include. But 3 to 5 cards tend to be most effective.
  • Size your image to the right dimensions. The height should be 600 pixels and the width should also be 600 pixels multiplied by the number of cards that you will use. For example, an image for a 3 card carousel ad should have a height of 600 pixels and a width of 1800 pixels.  
  • Upload the same image for each of the carousel cards. Keep in mind that you need to crop them at equal and sequential intervals (for example, left, right, and middle for a three-card image) to divide it up across the cards.
  • An alternative approach is to get your designer’s help to use Photoshop to crop each section at 600 x 600 and then save them individually into the carousel ad. 
  • Facebook can move the images that have the most engagement to the top of the carousel. So if you are doing a panoramic carousel, make sure that this option is turned off.
Use social proof to promote conversions

There is a lot of weight that comes with providing social proof to your customers. You can use reviews, ratings, testimonials and even success stories as social proof. And they can help you improve the odds of your conversions when they are presented at just the right time.

Research shows that 92% of consumers trust peer reviews when they make that purchasing call. Social proof can be combined with your promotions in carousel ads. This will allow you to show off what you have to offer, while validating your sales as well. 

Best practices for carousel ads on Facebook

Now you have some ideas for different types of carousel ads you can create. So let’s take a look at the best practices you’ll want to follow:

Focus on good ad copy 

Having great images and creative designs is key to making your customers stop scrolling and grabbing their attention. But that’s not enough to get the awareness, engagement, and conversions you need. Your ad will also need good copywriting that is also compelling.

  • Use your copy to encourage customers to move on the next card in the carousel and not exit. 
  • Your copy should always match your brand tone and be consistent with all of your other ad copy.
  • Make multiple versions of your ads. Use different copy for each segment of your audience. This way you are not giving all of your audiences something generic. 
  • Always have a very prominent call to action if you have a direct response objective. 
  • Make sure that your call to action is short and that it aligns with your campaign goals. 
  • You can add a caption for each card on your carousel ad. So make sure that each caption is powerful. 
  • Make use of the headline space that is under each image. Here you can promote benefits, discounts, and/or products that you have to offer.
Ensure all of your elements support each other
  • Use all of your carousel ad components to tell your story. 
  • Include captivating images and videos. 
  • Select lifestyle imagery to engage prospective customers. 
  • Pair up your carousel ad with a landing page.
  • The copy used in your designs must meet Facebook guidelines. Too much or too little content will get lower engagement. So use the tools on Facebook to use the right amount. 
  • Set up your ad, enabling the feature for your best performing carousel cards to dynamically be displayed first. Unless you are setting up a panoramic carousel ad, or a sequential story.
  • Look for inspiration. The best way to make sure that you do a spectacular carousel ad would be to get inspired. So do your research.

Create carousel ads on Facebook that convert

You now know that carousel ads on Facebook can be very effective. You also know about the different types of carousel ads you can try out. And some inspiring examples that have given businesses amazing results. So now it’s up to you to combine these ideas with Facebook’s best practices. The results can get you the traffic, sales, and engagement that you’ve been looking for! It may take a bit of trial and error, and A/B testing. But knowing that carousel ads consistently outperform other formats,  you can be sure that it’s worth the investment. 

And if you need some help with all that A/B testing, give a Kimp design subscription a try! With a graphic design and video subscription available, for flat monthly fees, you’ll get all the designs you need. And then some!