Facebook Audiences: Website Audience

Website re-targeting is THE MACK DADDY of all of Facebook’s audience creation options. One audience to rule them all if you will.

Facebook Pixel

To be able to re-target (target people that have visited your site) you must have the Facebook pixel installed on your website. The pixel works by matching people that are logged into Facebook (regardless of the device they use) with people that visit your site ie if people visit your site when they are logged into Facebook then their data is captured by the Facebook platform and you can target them in future Facebook campaigns.

Facebook Pixel
Source: J2 Store

I can’t stress this enough – if you don’t have a Facebook pixel on your site – get one on there. Vamos, vamos, vamos! I’m trying to learn some Spanish using the Duolingo app…the other day the app told me that I was 1% ‘fluent’…la manzanas.

Anyway, being able to target people that have engaged with you is the best form of marketing. The Facebook pixel enables businesses to do this. The scope of what you can do with the Facebook pixel is immense (I won’t even try to cover it all here) but there are two key dimensions to why it is so useful: relevance and timeliness.


What if you could target people based on the url or piece of content that they visited on your site? With the Facebook pixel you can. Did they download an e-book, view a webinar or read your blog? You can create audiences of people that visit specific urls and target them with more content.

Targeting with more content is the key here. Think of someone that visits your page as someone that has just reached the top of your sales funnel. They probably don’t know too much about you, but for some reason, your ad worked – it was interesting enough to bring a person to your site. Now is your chance to engage these people at a deeper level and build their confidence in your product or service. What exactly you do is completely up to you – but the key is to stay relevant. Build trust with this audience and take them along a buyer’s journey by demonstrating or providing more value until they trust you enough to buy.


The Facebook platform (when it comes to website re-targeting) enables you to target people that have visited your site up to 180 days in the past. The ability to segment audiences based on time is key to the success of your messaging. Messaging to audiences that have visited your site in the last day, week, month, or six months should not be the same! You need to provide information that is timely.

Source: Get Timely
Source: Get Timely

Thankfully, Facebook helps us even further here. Target people that have visited your site frequently ie in the top 5% of site visitors. Target people that have visited your purchase page, but didn’t buy. Target visitors that haven’t been back for a while with new content or offers to re-spark their initial interest, and much much more.

In our own targeting we include visitors that have come to the site in the last 30 days. These form the core of our re-targeting audience, and in general provide the best result when it comes to conversions. There are valid reasons for using larger audiences ie visitors from 180 days however in general the correlation between time and conversions is linear.


The Facebook pixel let’s you track how successful your ads are in putting dollars into your bank account. If your business sells stuff online, setting up conversion tracking is a must!

You need to know how much it costs to get a conversion using the Facebook platform so that you can best allocate your marketing dollars to what’s working. Is it costing you $4 to make an $80 purchase? If so, it is a fairly easy decision to keep spending money on Facebook. Is it costing you $60 to make an $80 purchase? If so, you might want to adjust your approach by changing your creative, targeting or offer.

Facebook - conversion cost
$4 for an $80 purchase. Keep spending!

The bottom line is that without the Facebook pixel properly installed and setup for conversion reporting you are flying blind. We regularly say that Facebook ads are 50% science and 50% art. The art is in the iterations, budgeting and improvements to targeting with each Facebook campaign. However without the technicals ie conversion reporting, the art is a whole lot more difficult.

Dynamic ads

If you have a range of products, properly setting up dynamics ads is a must. These ads let you target an audience with product-specific information and alter your ad based on key product variables depending on the actions taken by the audience.

For example, if someone views an item of clothing, adds it to their cart but doesn’t checkout you can automatically target them with that item when they next go into Facebook. The ad will have the product’s image, unique copy (based on what you choose) and price. I’m sure you have seen or experienced it. Do you have them setup for your business though?

Dynamic ads are a ROI-driving goldmine. We find that for many online retail stores the add to cart/purchase ratio is 6:1 so if 6,000 people add to cart 1,000 actually purchase. Those other 5,000 people, the ones that added to cart but didn’t check out, can be reached at an incredibly low cost point on Facebook (think less than $100) and are perfect for targeting.

To make the equation clearer, let’s say you:

– sell dresses for $100
– know that 5,000 people added the dresses to your online cart but didn’t purchase

What are the chances that at least one of those 5,000 will then buy if they are targeted with a product-specific ad? Pretty darn high in our experience. In fact, seeing purchase rates of 2.5% with targeting this precise is well within the realms of possibility.

So to put it dollar terms for all of those business owners out there:

– $100 spent
– 5,000 very relevant people reached
– 125 purchases (5,000 x 2.5%)
– $100 per dress
– $12,500 in revenue or a ROI of 12,400%

Dynamic Ads & Site Traffic

To make it sweeter for business owners that don’t have enough site traffic, Facebook also enables you to expand the reach of dynamic ads. This means that Facebook will automatically serve your ads to a larger audience if it believes those people are interested.

How exactly this works is a bit of a black box to us. I suspect given Facebook has it’s pixel installed on so many sites it is able to data match like with like ie has someone recently been to the ASOS website, looked at an item and not bought. Then this person may theoretically be served ads dynamically of like items.

While that may seem a bit dodgy (are competitors indirectly able to target your site traffic?) it is a benefit to smaller business owners where site traffic is usually not sufficient to run dynamic ads ie small businesses don’t tend to have 1,000 people purchasing or adding to cart each week.

Anyways if you have multiple products and aren’t doing dynamic ads – get onto it asap bonito! Ok possibly the wrong use of Spanish here.

– Rukmal
Co-founder of The Plus Ones, Rukmal lives and breathes digital marketing. 

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