The Holy Grail of E-Commerce Automation: A Primer on Dynamic Product Ads
Back to where we started this post: the Dynamic Product Ads.
At this point, we have our tagging set up properly, but we need one other key component to get our Dynamic Product Ads off the ground: a “Product Catalog” integration with our Facebook Ad Account.
Here are the detailed instructions from Facebook, but for you Shopify store owners, there’s a very handy app available to make this easier.
It’s by Flexify and it’s aptly-named: Facebook Product Feed
With this app, you can easily generate your product catalog and it will “auto-update” at an interval of your specification, so that you can be sure your products are kept up-to-date (for availability, new products, etc).
Use of this app does slightly alter the way you need to set up your tagging, but the code in my course outlines how to set this up properly, since using this app is by far the path of “least-resistance” for creating a product catalog feed.
Think of your product catalog as a “look-up-table” or mini-database of sorts, where each row contains a product + variant ID, the associated image, the description of the product, and so forth. Here’s a mock-up that Facebook provides:
We won’t go through the steps of setting up the product catalog here, but after you have it set up properly, you will be able to dynamically pull in your product data for ad images, copy, etc.
You can even specify different “Product Sets” inside Power Editor, so that you can cross-sell people who have purchased certain product types but not others.
Let’s look at an example of Dynamic Product Ads in action.
First, in Power Editor, we’re going to “Create Campaign” and give our campaign a name it “DPA – Retarget Sweaters”. Our goal with this campaign is to get people who have viewed sweaters or added them to their cart in the last 10 days to purchase.
For our objective, we’re going to choose “Product Catalog Sales”.
We’ll go ahead and check the options to create a new Ad Set and a new Ad, just naming them “test ad set” and “test ad” for now (we can rename later).
Here’s what we have so far:
Next, we’re going to hop down to the “Ad Set” level in Power Editor and open it for editing.
Here’s where things get interesting. You’re going to have a few new options that aren’t present in other ad types that really set Dynamic Product Ads apart.
First, we’re going to be asked to specify a “Product Set”. This is where we’re going to choose the group of products we want Facebook to “draw from” when creating our ad.
So, we’ll click the plus sign to set up a new Product Set.
For this example, we’ll name our Product Set “Sweaters In Stock”.
Next, we need to set our filters.
Filters are the inclusion and exclusion “logic” that helps you specify your product-set more tightly. These fields draw from our Product Catalog, and Facebook will give us some handy “auto-fill” values to make our life easier.
I’m going to specify my first filter as “Product Type” “is” and in the value field, when I start typing, “Sweatshirt” auto-populates. I’ll choose that from the dropdown.
Next, I’m going to add another filter to be sure that the products that are being shown are in-stock, available for order, or “preorder”.
Here’s what I have now:
I’ll click “Create”, and now I’ll have this new product set available to select in the dropdown list. I’ll go ahead and choose it.
Next, I’ll set up my Budget and ad scheduling like normal, specifying a daily budget and a campaign start and end date.
The next section “Audience” is where Dynamic Product Ads really shine through.
You’ll see some really cool options here that would be incredibly painful to set up manually:
Pay close attention to those Upsell and Cross-Sell Options. Here, you can specify a SECOND product set from which you want to create an audience to cross-sell the first product set! I imagine you can think of some pretty awesome use-cases for that!
For example, maybe I want to cross-sell our newly created “Sweaters In-Stock” product set to people who bought t-shirts in the last 120 days:
But, for our purposes, we’re going to choose the top option: “Viewed or Added to Cart But Not Purchased” and I’ll leave the time threshold at 10 days for now.
I can further specify the geo-targeting, demographic and interest targeting if I would like. I’m going to narrow my audience to females age 24 – 35 living in the USA.
In the placement settings, I’ll go ahead and limit my ad set to the desktop newsfeed for now (I might duplicate this adset and run it strictly for mobile news feed after I’m done).
I’ll leave the Optimization and Pricing as it is (“Link Clicks”, “Automatic Bids”)
So, I’m done editing my ad set. I’ll go back and rename my adset to reflect my targeting and placement: F_24-35_USA_DesktopNF.
On to the Ad editing.
I’m not going to go through all of the ad editing steps here, but I’ll show you what makes Dynamic Product Ads different than normal ads.
First, we’re usually going to use a “carousel” ad type here with multiple products being displayed. This is because we’re retargeting folk who have already checked out some of our products in this category, and I want to give myself an opportunity to showcase a few different products.
Next, the coolest thing here is I can dynamically pull attributes of the products to populate our images, headlines, and copy!
So, instead of me having to hand-type out all of this copy and cropping / uploading a ton of images, Facebook does all the heavy lifting for me!
In a very advanced set-up, you could even create a new meta-field in your Shopify backend where you put in a “Facebook Description” … Then add it to your product catalog so that I can be used in your ads (so that you’re sure your best copywriting skills shine through)!
After finishing up the ad setup, I’ll rename the ad to specify which type of ad I’m using (single vs. carousel) and maybe a couple of details about the copy. I’ll also be sure to associate the ad with my site’s “Pixel” (to track conversions) and I’m done!