Facebook connects store visits to online ads
Finally, the online world is about to meet the offline world, as facebook connects store visits to online ads.
Last year, Facebook began giving marketers a lot more information about the people that were physically close to their stores. People that own or manage a physical store will actually see a lot more information. Owners will discover the amount of people near their store, the best time of day for that traffic and other selected demographics.
Facebook have actually added a new addition to this and it’s going to be fascinating to see how this changes the way we do business. Essentially, what they’re about to do is give advertisers information about who the ads were served to and if those people went inside a store physically to make a purchase.
Facebook is also going to let advertisers actually link transactions to the ads that they saw . This will give the advertisers a bit more information about what’s going on. Store Visits are a pretty new metric that Facebook is rolling out. Basically it will help retailers better understand their foot traffic after running a local awareness ad.
Local Awareness Ads
Facebook’s local awareness ads just came out recently and they aim to bring people to your business, whether you have a single store or thousands of locations. The ads show people the stores nearest to them and offer relevant call-to-actions like “Get Directions,” making it easy for people to shop the store most convenient to them.
With this new feature, Facebook said that advertisers can actually see how many people come into the store after seeing a Facebook ad. Then they can optimize their ads; they can change the delivery; they can change the targeting based on the store visits. Once they’ve run those ads they can analyze the results across all their stores in their regions.
The Facebook director of monitization and product marketing, Maz Sharafi, said that one of the trends that was on their minds was that people were spending a lot more time on mobile than any other channel. Because mobile purchases are a little bit different — 90% of retail sales are still happening in store — so with that mobile shift, there is a fundamental challenge that marketers had. They not only need to drive people into a store, but how do they measure the actual real business result? That’s what Facebook were really interested in doing.
This Store Visits metric is about to be rolled out to advertisers around the world in the next few months. The catch is, though, that advertisers may not be able to get a complete picture of everyone who went to their stores. Users have to actually opt-in to location tracking in Facebook’s app in order for the conversions to work. It’s going to be a little bit of work trying to get people to opt-in for that. I’m sure that’s going to be a challenge for a lot of people.
Facebook is also rolling out a tool called Store Locator. Basically it’s a map feature that pops up in people’s news feeds like a little carousel. When they’re on their mobile device and they’re walking around a shopping center, this little map will pop up. It will offer retailers the ability to pinpoint locations near the Facebook users on a map image. So if they’re walking around a large mall, and then one retailer targets anyone within the four walls of the mall,then their store locator information on this map will pop up.
Of course I’m guessing there’s going to be a cost involved with that. But basically what happens is, the user will see it; there will be details about hours of operation, phone numbers and address. If a person wants more information like directions on how to get there, they can click on the image. The image will open a Map app that’s actually native to their smart phones, like Apple or Google Maps. It will let advertisers create dynamic data for individual locations within a single campaign.
Have you seen any of the locator maps pop up in your travels recently?