In 2022, having the right e-commerce marketing strategy can be the difference between the success or failure of your online store.
American consumers spent about $900 billion on e-commerce in the year 2020. In the midst of the post-pandemic, most e-commerce businesses became a go-to storefront for millions of Americans. Some businesses attempted to start their e-commerce stores up as fast as possible.
Some succeeded, and some failed. When it comes to deciding which marketing strategy to use, it usually comes down to Facebook Ads vs. Google Ads. Which ones are better? Today, we’ll be going over the pros and cons of each network.
In this guide, learn all about Facebook ads vs Google ads to determine which platform will work for your e-commerce business.
- How Do Facebook Ads Work?
- Different Types of Facebook Ads
- How Do Google Ads Work?
- What Are the Main Differences between Facebook Ads and Google Ads?
- Are Facebook Ads Cheaper Than Google Ads?
- Facebook Ads VS. Google Ads — Why a Smart E-commerce Business Uses Both
- Where to Learn More about Facebook Ads and Google Ads for E-Commerce
- Facebook Ads VS. Google Ads: The Bottom Line
How Do Facebook Ads Work?
Facebook ads are one of the most effective ways to accelerate your marketing campaigns in 2022.
However, since the iOS14 update in 2021, Facebook has faced some unique challenges that are holding it back from its full potential.
The iOS14 updates significantly limited the capacity of Facebook ads to reach the target audience which was soon felt by advertisers across the globe, with many e-commerce stores reporting a drop in overall sales from Facebook advertising.
However, don’t despair, the good news is that Facebook ads still work very well.
In just 30 days, a marketing guru can generate hundreds or thousands of leads in a variety of industries.
By implementing the right conversion tracking using the Facebook pixel, marketers gain a significant advantage in targeting and retargeting campaigns.
Facebook ads have historically worked using an auction-based system. This system uses information from the highest bidder to give priority to the ad across a variety of the company’s platforms. However, recent changes have led to subtle updates to this process.
The current auction is now based on factors like ad rank, advertiser bid, ad quality and relevancy, and action rates. While Facebook provides this information publicly, they keep the majority of the information about the new algorithm private to protect it from competitors.
Different Types of Facebook Ads
Facebook evaluates ads that can come in one of six formats.
Facebook Image Format Ads
A Facebook Ad in image format is usually in the form of a JPEG or PNG. Facebook advertisers can upload images with dynamic or static images that are designed to drive clicks and ultimately sales.
Digital Marketers need to perform A/B testing on these images to maximize clicks and conversions. Usually, digital marketers will keep a common theme throughout and ad set but focus on scaling up (increasing the budget) of the ads that are performing the best.
It’s important that marketers always use high-resolution images.
Facebook Video Ads
A video ad is an excellent upgrade for marketers who want to showcase three-dimensional designs or products that involve motion. In certain cases, using videos for Facebook ads allows a business to demonstrate the sound a product makes.
Most marketers will focus on placing these videos in feeds, or stories. It’s also possible to create a slideshow of static images from different angles.
Facebook Carousel Ads
Facebook carousel ads are like a photo book of 10 images or videos. Each image will get its own individual link.
It’s best for marketers to use carousels when they want to walk the customer through a step-by-step process or thought pattern before generating a lead.
Facebook Instant Experience Ads
Facebook Instant Experience ads are able to match up with other types of ads like collection ads. Users can navigate a well-designed experience swiping through carousels or even shop for products directly from your Facebook catalog.
Experienced marketers avoid captions for videos because they don’t want to distract from the overall experience of the ad.
Facebook Collection Ads
As discussed above, Facebook Collection ads work very well with Instant Experience ads.
The collection ad will be a specific cover photo that can host up to four images featuring products.
When the user clicks on the photo, they will be redirected to a landing page for that product in combination with the instant experience designed by the marketer.
How Do Google Ads Work?
Google Ads is an extremely powerful marketing tool that can be used to drive brand awareness and generate sales.
Previously known as Google AdWords, the new Google Ads experience provides advertisers with the opportunity to reach customers based on their interests, online behavior, and search intent.
Google Ad Formats
Google Ads offers a variety of advertising formats that include:
- Search Ads
- Display Ads
- Shopping Ads
- Video Ads (YouTube Ads)
- App Ads
Google Search Ads
Google Search Ads enable advertisers to bid on keywords they would like their ads to appear for when people Search Google for answers.
Jane’s eCommerce store sells organic lipstick in the United States.
She wants her ad to appear at the top of Google Search results whenever anyone searches for “organic lipstick”.
Jane would create a Google Search Campaign and target the keyword “organic lipstick”, deciding how much she is prepared to pay when a user clicks on her ad (PPC – pay per click).
Tip: Many advertisers think the highest bid wins the race; bid high enough and your ad will appear at the top of the search results. This is not the case.
Google ranks your ad using its Quality Score rating system.
A Google ad must provide users with a good landing page experience and also be relevant to the search query (keyword).
If one advertiser bids less yet providers users with a better experience, their ad will appear at the top of the results, even though they are paying less.
Google Display Ads
Google Display Ads appear on websites as people Surf the Web.
If you’ve ever been on a website and seen an image or video ad for a brand or product, these are Display Ads.
Display ads are great for brand awareness but have another added bonus. Display Ads are a great way to retarget individuals who have visited your website but have not yet converted.
Kim sells funky bicycle helmets. The website is getting plenty of traffic but not many sales.
Kim’s graphics designer creates an eyecatching set of display ads (see Google banner/display ad sizes). These ads are then used for a Google Display Ad campaign, targeting the audience of visitors who didn’t convert. These Display ads follow the user around to websites they visit, the user keeps seeing the ads, reminded of the helmet they were thinking of buying. They click on the ad and buy the helment. Voila!
That’s just one example of the power of Display Ads.
There are a few bid strategy choices with Display Ads. These bid strategies include:
- CPC (cost per click)
- vCPM (viewable cost per thousand impressions)
- CPA (cost per action)
Google Shopping Ads
All e-commerce store owners should consider running Google Shopping Ads.
Google Shopping Ads promote your online and local inventory to people searching for products just like yours.
To run Google Shopping Ads a Google Merchant Centre account is required.
Google Merchant Centre connects to your website and processes your product feed.
Once the product feed is approved, you can create a Google Shopping campaign in Google Ads.
The bid strategy for these ads is PPC – pay per click.
Want people to watch your ad on YouTube? You need to do it through Google Ads.
There are a few pre-requisites – such as connecting your YouTube channel to Google Ads and having the video you want to use as the ad uploaded to your channel.
With over 122 million active daily users, any business not taking advantage of YouTube advertising is leaving money on the table.
The bidding strategy for YouTube is CPV (cost per view), how much you are prepared to pay for someone to view your ad.
If you have an App and your goal is new installs of your app, then App ads are for you.
App ads show across a variety of platforms, including App stores, and showcase your app with the goal of getting new customers to install your app.
Unlike individual ads, and the ads we reference above, Google takes impressions from your app and designs an ad for you using these images.
Bidding strategies for apps depend on the campaign goal; such as installs, pre-registrations, or in-app actions.
Google Ads Recommendation
Google Ads are not easy to run. Why? Because there are so many different parameters to consider and the slightest tweak can increase sales substantially.
We highly recommend hiring a certified Google Ads expert, or at least having a chat with one before starting a Google Ads campaign.
What Are the Main Differences between Facebook Ads and Google Ads?
While they have a lot of similarities, Facebook ads and Google ads tend to be used for different purposes.
Smart marketers will use Facebook ads in a more passive campaign that targets the audience’s interests.
Because Facebook has a fairly robust set of targeting demographics and interest categories, it’s easy for marketers to niche down to reach their audiences with specificity.
On the other hand, Google ads don’t provide this same amount of information about the individual looking at your ad. What they do tell you however is one of the most important pieces of information that a marketer can hold. This is search intent.
Marketers are catching individuals right at the moment they are trying to find information or solve a problem. This makes it much more likely for them to buy a product.
With a tactical approach to Google ads, a smart marketer can position the product or service right in front of the eyes of the user at just the right time.
As you can see, both of these platforms have their advantages and disadvantages. A smart marketer will be able to use both of these tools in their toolbelt.
Are Facebook Ads Cheaper Than Google Ads?
Ultimately, the answer to this question will depend on a variety of factors, including your skill as a marketer on each of these platforms. However, on the whole Facebook ads are slightly cheaper than Google ads.
For a company that is trying to sell a shirt in the retail apparel sector, they might have to pay about $0.50 for ads through Facebook channels. On the other hand, the cost for most Google ads will be slightly higher than this. However, Google ads may provide some benefit in certain industries like finance or insurance.3
Facebook Ads Versus Google Ads-Why a Smart E-Commerce Business Uses Both
Where to Learn More about Facebook Ads and Google Ads for E-Commerce
We go into significant detail on both Facebook ads and Google ads on our blog, where we give ecommerce tips. If you want to learn more about digital marketing agency management and professional guidance to maximize your sales and profits and grow your business, we want to help you. Check out our articles or you can contact us to speak with our team directly.
At the end of the day, when considering Facebook ads vs. Google ads, you need to consider cost and marketing experience. You also want to think about where in your sales funnel you want to engage the customer. If you want to engage the customer earlier on to promote brand awareness in a target demographic that’s likely to reach out to you, Facebook ads are your best bet.
However, if you are interested in generating a faster sale that reaches anyone with the desired search intent, Google ads may be more effective, albeit at a slightly higher price.
If you enjoyed this article, please check out the other articles on our blog.
CEO of Hawaii's largest Digital Marketing Agency, Karizma Marketing, Toccara Karizma is a Digital Marketing Consultant renowned for turning eCommerce businesses into 7 figure powerhouses.
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