Facebook carousel ads are a Facebook ad type that allows for two to ten images or videos within one ad. They are built in Facebook Ads Manager with multiple images and videos in a single ad, allowing advertisers to get more ad real estate at no additional cost. They are best for businesses advertising product-based catalogs and collections.
Many small businesses struggle to get the returns they are seeking, as they lack the time and Facebook marketing expertise necessary to design and launch professional ads. If you are considering outsourcing your Facebook advertising, look into using Hibu—an agency that can create effective ads for you and optimize them for maximum return on ad spend.
How Facebook Carousel Ads Work
Carousel ads are built in Facebook Ads Manager by choosing carousel ads as the ad format. This ad format setup prompts advertisers to upload multiple images or videos, which can better engage an audience, driving more conversions. Once the new campaign creation process has been completed, the ad will then be eligible to display to your chosen audience on either Facebook or Instagram.
Carousel ads that use multiple images will give users the option to scroll through the ad’s images. Having up to 10 images helps to further showcase a business’ products or services and it can also better tell a story. For example, a brewery can use carousel ads every quarter to promote their new line of seasonal brews. With a single image ad, they would be limited to sharing the announcement of just one new brew per ad, or clutter one image with multiple products.
Carousel ads can also use up to 10 videos within one ad. This gives advertisers a way to use short videos cohesively to tell a more animated story. Video ads are known for better catching the attention of users, and breaking out videos into multiple shorter videos provides more interaction for users, as they can skip to the videos of interest.
Who Facebook Carousel Ads Are Right For
Carousel ads are great for businesses using Facebook ads as part of their Facebook marketing strategy to promote product catalogs, products with variations, services with different packages, and higher-priced products or services that have a longer customer sales journey. For example, high-cost products such as automobiles are well suited for carousel ads because they give the brand an opportunity to showcase many aspects of the product.
Facebook carousel ads are best for:
- Companies Advertising Products – Having up to 10 images in one ad means they’re perfect for businesses advertising a product catalog. Advertisers can choose to display a product catalog, variations of one product or service, or use multiple images to better highlight the ad’s message.
- Businesses Telling a Story – Using multiple images and videos gives advertisers a lot more advertising real estate to tell a story within one ad. This works to better convey an ad’s message, as additional supporting media gives the ad room to explain a message better than a single image or video ad.
- Organizations Wanting to Increase Event Attendance – Carousel ads are a good choice for businesses advertising events on Facebook because they are one of the few ad formats that can be used for the goal of raising attendance.
Even the best candidates for carousel ads will fail to see the results they’re looking for if they lack audience targeting, so be sure to have a really solid understanding of who your ideal customers are and where you can best reach them. There are many different ways to target audiences, so to help make it easy, we covered the best ways in our article on the Top 7 Facebook Ad Targeting Options.
Facebook Carousel Ads Cost
Facebook’s pricing is not based on ad format, so carousel ads cost the same as any other ad format, such as single image or video ads. Advertisers determine how much they want to spend on Facebook advertising and the more they spend, the more ad interaction they receive. For campaigns run on a cost-per-click budget, the average CPC across all industries is approximately $0.27 (Google Ads average closer to upwards of $2 per click).
Interested in learning more about Facebook advertising costs, including average CPCs by industry and how to calculate estimated returns on ad spend? We’ve detailed how much Facebook advertising costs to give you a good idea of what it will cost for your industry and what you can get out of your Facebook advertising in our article Facebook Advertising Costs by Industry.
Facebook Carousel Ad Specs
Facebook carousel ad formats have a series of specs, including video size, length, video thumbnail size, ad copy limitations, and supported goals. Not only is it key to choose the best ad format for your advertising goal, but you also want to be sure to adhere to the carousel ad specs to ensure your video does not have any issues, such as being cut off or blurry when displayed as an ad.
Overview of Facebook Carousel Ad Specs
There is a lot of information around ad specs and the above chart covers a basic overview of carousel ad specs. Get more detailed information on all of the carousel ad specs in our article on the Complete List of Facebook Ad Specs.
How to Create a Carousel Post on Facebook in 8 Steps
With your foundation laid out, it’s time to begin building your new Facebook carousel ad. First, begin with your ad design, then set up your ad campaign with audience, targeting options, and budget. Finally, launch your ad.
Follow our steps to quickly learn how to create a carousel post on Facebook in eight steps.
1. Determine Your Advertising Goals
To design an effective Facebook carousel ad, start by pinpointing your campaign’s precise advertising goal. The more specific you can be, the better, as it will help you design a more highly-targeted ad across all steps of the campaign creation process. Carousel ads are meant to tell a story, so be sure yours does this with great ad copy and media that resonates with your target audience.
Start by determining your advertising goal. Every campaign has its own advertising goal, from building brand awareness to converting warm leads. Clearly defining your goal lets you then choose the most suitable call to action.
2. Choose Your Target Audience
Now that you know what you’re looking to achieve with your ad, it’s time to identify the exact type of user that should see your ad. Facebook has a multitude of audience targeting options that help advertisers create highly-qualified groups of people to display their ad to. Learn how to create precise customer profiles in our article on How to Create Customer Profiles.
3. Design Your Ad to Match Your Goals & Audience
Considering your advertising goal and your ideal customer, create a message that will speak to your audience and achieve your specified outcome. Remember that this is an opportunity to give users a reason to click your ad, so convey a message that will resonate. For example, a private car service has pricing comparable to Uber, but the reason users choose them is because they can pre-book cars. An ad should highlight this on top of cost to be more effective.
Here are some important steps in designing your ad:
Choose a Fitting Call to Action
A call to action should clearly state that action you want your target audience to take. This can be anything from “Learn More” to bring users to a landing page off of Facebook to “Sign Up” or “Shop Now.” Choose the CTA that matches the outcome of your advertising goal.
Source Ad Media: Images & Videos
Back your ad’s messaging with strong visuals that catch people’s eyes and supports your ad copy. Carousel ads give advertisers the option of images and videos, so choose which better fits your campaign. Regardless of the media type you choose or whether you create custom media or use stock media, be sure that it is high quality and meets Facebook’s ad specs.
Video ads are admittedly more complex to create than image ads. Learn more about what is involved with creating video ads, including tips for creating great videos in our article How to Design, Create & Launch Effective Facebook Video Ads.
Build Landing Pages
A landing page for a Facebook ad is a single web page created solely for use with certain ads used to convert clicks to leads. They reduce the bulk of a webpage and more clearly define a CTA, driving more conversions than a standard page from your website. Businesses using a CTA to drive a specific action such as a newsletter signup or a complimentary offer should use landing pages.
Creating a whole new landing page may sound like a lot, but advertisers usually find them to be a worthwhile investment as they see higher conversion rates than using an existing page from your website.
4. Go to Facebook Ads Manager
Log in to your Facebook Ads Manager account. If you have multiple ad accounts, select the account you wish to build a carousel ad for. If your Ads Manager account is linked to your personal Facebook page, click the dropdown arrow in the upper right-hand corner of the screen to view the menu and select “Manage Ads.” Those without a Facebook Ads Manager account need to begin by creating one by completing the new account registration process on Facebook.
5. Create a New Campaign
On your Facebook Ads Manager home screen, be sure you’re looking at the tab labeled “Campaigns” in the top center of the screen below the “Search” and “Filters” options. Click the green button on the left-hand side of the screen titled “+ Create” to begin the process of building a new campaign.
6. Choose Your Campaign Objective
Facebook Ads Manager will walk you through the new campaign creation process, starting with selecting your ad format and campaign objectives. Select the objective that fits your advertising goal. You can use carousel ads with any of the listed objectives except Video Views and Engagement, so do not choose either of those if you’re looking to create a carousel ad.
7. Select Your Audience, Placements, Budget & Schedule
Follow the campaign creation steps to select your audience, ad placement, budget, and schedule. This is where you tell Facebook who to show your ad to, where to show it (e.g., Facebook Feed, Instagram Feed, and other placements), how much you want to spend, and when you want your ads to show.
8. Create Your Carousel Ad
Here is where you will select carousel as your Facebook ad type. Then, scroll down on the page to create your carousel ad. You will input your ad’s headline, text, CTA, destination URL, and any other requested information. This is also where you will upload your images or videos for the ad. Once you have completed this section, click the green “Confirm” button at the bottom of the page. This will save your ad and, once approved, will launch your ad.
Tips for Creating Effective Facebook Carousel Ads
As with most forms of advertising, a great ad is one that not only reaches, but resonates with your target audience. As every business has a different ideal customer, or target audience, what makes an ad effective will vary with every business. Still, there are common elements to keep in mind when creating your carousel ad to help ensure your ads are worth your investment. We go over these tips below. For more tips on creating successful Facebook ads, read Facebook Advertising: The Ultimate Guide with Examples.
Here are four main tips for creating great Facebook carousel ads:
- Group Similar Products Together – Just because you have the opportunity to use up to 10 images doesn’t mean you should use all of them at once. Instead, make sure you use a collection of products that make sense together in one ad.
- Don’t Depend on Audio – Remember that the majority of users will not have sound on, so don’t create videos that rely on audio.
- Start Your Message Strong – Front-loading your ad’s message means more people will get your ad’s message, so don’t think that you can build up to it and finish with it—especially for video ads, which should include your message within the first five seconds.
- Autoplay Video Ads – If you’re using carousel ads with videos, choose cost-per-one-thousand-views (CPM) bidding so that your ads will automatically play when display.
Pros & Cons of Facebook Carousel Ads
Like every Facebook ad type, carousel ads have their pros and cons. The success of Facebook ads ultimately depends on the level of strategy involved in the design and creation of ads. Understanding what makes them great, as well as their downfalls, can help you decide if they’re right for you.
Pros of Carousel Ads
The pros of Facebook carousel ads are:
- Product Catalog Promotion – Advertise multiple products, or variations of one product, in a single ad.
- Storytelling Capabilities – Using additional images or videos can enhance your ad’s message.
- Interactive – Using multiple, short videos can make them more interactive than one long video.
Cons of Carousel Ads
The cons of Facebook carousel ads are:
- Potential for Mixed Messages – If an advertiser fails to create a clear message, ads with multiple images or videos could become confusing to users.
- Production Cost – For most businesses, more media means more money.
- Limited Supported Goals – Carousel ads have a limited number of supported goals, so they’re not as versatile as other ad formats, such as single image or video ads.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Which Facebook Ad Formats Support Multiple Images and/or Videos?
The following Facebook ad formats support multiple images and/or videos: carousel ads and slideshow ads. They do not have the same advertising goals, however. Also, carousel ads can support images and videos, whereas slideshow ads support images only.
What Are the Best Ways to Target Facebook Carousel Ads?
Every business will target ads differently depending on who their target audience is and the best way to reach them on Facebook. Still, with so many targeting options available, we’ve narrowed it down to the top seven: demographics, interests, life events, lifestyle & financial, connections, behaviors, and retargeting. Find out how to use these targeting options to great audiences comprised of your ideal customer in our article on the Top 7 Facebook Ad Targeting Option.
How Do I Create Effective Landing Pages for Facebook Ads?
Facebook ads use images, unlike text-only paid search ads, so Facebook landing pages need to be designed to visually match their ad. Also, Facebook has certain landing page requirements, such as including an external link. Learn more about how to create great Facebook landing pages in our article, How to Create a High Converting Facebook Landing Page.
Bottom Line – How to Create Carousel Posts
Facebook carousel ads are a versatile and effective Facebook ad format that gives advertisers the ability to use multiple images or videos in a single ad. Carousel ads can be used by any business, but they are particularly useful for those advertising a product collection or a product with variations (e.g., colors, options, features, or packages). Businesses can get creative about how they use carousel ads to build eye-catching and informative ads that convert.
The success of your Facebook ads depends not only your ad strategy and design, but on your ad’s ongoing optimizations. Advertisers who see the best results with Facebook ads are those who monitor their ads and make strategic optimizations. Not every business is equipped with the know-how or time to strategically build, manage, and optimize their Facebook ads, which is why many choose to use a Facebook ad management service such as Hibu to increase their ad success.