5 facebook retargeting ads that Combat Abandoned Carts

As an online retailer, the struggle with abandoned carts is all too real for you. The industry average for abandoned cart rate is 68%. So basically, out of 100 people who added something to their cart on your site, only 32 of them will actually make a purchase. While this can be frustrating, retargeting those hot prospects actually presents a huge sales opportunity for you.

Keep reading to find out how to implement a Facebook retargeting strategy that’ll help you recover those lost sales from abandoned shopping carts. It’s not uncommon to see a 10 – 33 times return on ad spend with these types of ads.

Here’s the process you should follow when creating a successful retargeting campaign:

  1. Create a Facebook Audience
  2. Behavior Based Retargeting
  3. Sequential Retargeting
  4. Monitor Facebook Ad Performance
  5. Retargeting Ads Combat Cart Abandonment


How To Create a Facebook Audience

Before getting started with creating the ads, you’ll need to set up rules on Facebook so you can show ads to the right people. Here are the steps:

Set up a product catalog on Facebook

  • You need to have the products available so Facebook can show them in your ads.
  • Once the product catalog is set up, you will need a product feed. Here are two great apps we’ve found useful in the past:
    1. Flexify is a great app for Shopify users.
    2. If you sell on Woocommerce, try PixelYourSite.

Create custom audiences on Facebook

Once the products have been added, you need to create rules so Facebook knows who to show the ads to

  1. Go to your Facebook Business Manager
  2. Click on the three little lines in the upper left-hand corner and select ‘Audiences’
    how to create audience on facebook
  3. Click ‘Create Audience, Custom Audience’
    how to target web traffic on facebook
  4. Select ‘Website Traffic’
  5. Select Add to Cart or Purchase, along with the audience time frame you want to include.
  6. For this example, we need to create
    • four Add to Cart Audiences: 4 Day, 10 Day, 15 Day, and 21 Day
    • four Purchase Audiences: 4 Day, 10 Day, 15 Day, and 21 Day

    how to create add to cart audiences on facebook

  7. Give each audience a name and click ‘Create Audience’.
    naming your audiences on facebook


Facebook Ads 1 & 2: Behavior Based Retargeting

The first two ads will focus on behavior retargeting. We will create two Dynamic Product Ads that target prospects based on how they interacted with your products. There will be one campaign, two ad sets and one ad in each ad set. Let’s get started:


Facebook Ad 1: Target Hot Prospects Within First 24 Hours

  1. Go to ‘Ads Manager’ and Click ‘Create’
    ads manager in facebook
  2. Select ‘Catalog Sales’ and your product catalog
    inputting product catalogs on facebook
  3. For your audience, make the selections below. These selections will tell Facebook to show this ad 24 hours after a person has either viewed a product or added a product to their cart but did NOT purchase. Your prospects are the hottest within the first 24 hours. Take advantage of this timeframe and you will likely see the highest return on ad spend.how to target visitors 24 hours after adding something to their cart
  4. We will choose ‘Automatic Placements’ because the audience is so tiny and warm.
    choosing automatic placements on facebook because audience is small
  5. Then select ‘Impressions’. The purpose of choosing impressions is that the audience is usually really small. Having such a small audience can sometimes stall a new ad campaign if it is optimized for conversions. By first optimizing for impressions you ‘get the ad going’. You will let it run for 7 days and then come back into the ad set and change it to ‘Conversion Events’, ‘7 Days Click or 1 Day View’,‘Purchase’. In my experience, this is the best way to structure this type of retargeting.
    conversion events for impressions
  6. For your ad, we will want to run a carousel ad. In the ad copy, give your prospect a reason to return and purchase. The incentive could be free shipping or a percentage off their order. You will also want to address any objections they may have about purchasing from your brand. For example, talk about your generous return policy or highlight a review from a past customer.Related: Do’s and Don’ts of Facebook Advertising for Online Retailers


Facebook Ad 2: Target Hot Prospects Within First 24 Hours

Now, within that same campaign, create a new ad set with new targeting. Every selection will be the same except the targeting.

target hot prospects within first 24 hours

If the prospect hasn’t purchased the product after seeing the first retargeting ad, this ad will target them for three days. Run a carousel ad again, remind them of the incentive, and highlight a customer review, if you have one.


Facebook Ads 3, 4, & 5: Sequential Retargeting

The next three ads will focus on adding value and demonstrating why your products and brand are superior.

  1. These ads are considered traffic campaigns, which means the goal is to get more visits to your website. Choose traffic under the Consideration section.
  2. Also, use the same custom audiences we created earlier. And since the audiences are so small and still relatively warm, use the automatic placements.
  3. For each of these ads choose “landing page views” for the optimization.


Facebook Ad 3: Promote A Blog Post

For the third ad in this retargeting sequence, set the targeting as follows:

promote a blog post on facebook ads

For the ad copy, link to and promote one of your blog post. The post should be full of juicy content that provides value to the reader with links to your products. If you don’t have the resources in-house to write a post like this, it can be easily outsourced. A guide or how-to article would be ideal for this type of content.

Related: How A Blog Can Boost Your Ecommerce Traffic And Bring You 1.7 Million in Sales


Facebook Ad 4: Promote A Second Blog Post

For the fourth ad in our retargeting sequence, set up the targeting as follows:

promote a best-selling list on facebook ads

Use this ad as an opportunity to educate the potential customer about your products and brand. This ad should link to and promote another blog post. The blog post can probably be written in-house. It will need to highlight and link to your best-selling products. The post is a good way to focus on a group of recommended products your prospect should check out. Be sure to add the benefits and unique selling proposition of each product.


Facebook Ad 5: Highlight A Trending Product

For our fifth and final ad in the retargeting sequence, our targeting will be as follows:

highlight trending products on facebook

In this ad, we want to highlight a popular or trending product. The goal is to send them to a specific product page. It’s also good to offer an incentive to purchase such as a special offer or product reviews from customers who love the product.


Monitor Facebook Ad Performance

To see how each ad is doing in terms of return on ad spend, customize the columns in the ads manager. See the images below for which columns to include:

monitor facebook ad performance with these options

ecommerce businesses should focus on these KPIs on facebook


Takeaway: Retargeting Ads Can Help With Shopping Cart Abandonment

Don’t let your shopping cart abandoners off the hook. These five ads will help engage those prospects that need a bit more nudging. Capitalize on these warm leads with effective Facebook ads. Be sure to monitor the results, and continue to optimize the photos, text, and ad structure.

Also, I would like to leave you with some final thoughts about branding. It’s becoming increasingly important to have a strong brand to develop customer loyalty. Not having a strong brand can hurt your Facebook ad performance. It impacts your conversion rate and return on ad spend.

So how do you accomplish this? First, build a brand you care about and are proud of! Second, show your passion in your content and tell your brand’s story. Lastly, make product reviews a priority. Social proof is so very important in today’s ecommerce landscape.

Shopping cart abandonment is the bane of an online merchant’s existence. Read our guide on the causes of cart abandonment and avoid this annoyance once and for all.

About the Author: Hannah Mongiat is the owner of Speakeasy Social83, a digital marketing agency that specializes in e-commerce businesses. When she’s not elbow deep in data, getting her clients more sales, you can find her traveling, knitting or practicing yoga. She lives in Chicago with two rescue cats, Bailey and Scooter, and her non-rescued husband, Mark.


Better eRetail eBook
Better eRetail eBook

We teamed up with other ecommerce industry experts to put together 75 tips to help your boost online sales. It’s perfect for the beginner and advanced retailer alike.

You will receive an email with your download shortly!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This