Facebook Ads for Local Businesses

There are a lot of different ways to advertise your local business on Facebook. If you are not experienced with Facebook ads or online ads in general, you might be wondering if Facebook ads are worth it. The short answer is yes – they are. But you have to know how to properly utilize them to get the most bang for your buck.

Why should you advertise your local business on Facebook?

People don’t use Google to find items they buy locally

When people are looking to for a local service like a dry cleaner, they’re probably not going to search online for it, but instead, go to the nearest business and leave their clothes.

To drive store visits and sales with online ads, you need to be able to both target the right people in your local area and reach them somewhere that they’ll see it – Facebook is the only ad platforms where you can do that.

You can target people that are located near one of your business locations

Facebook also allows you to target your ads to a single city or town, which makes it easy to show your ad only to the people who can come to your store.

You can target your previous customers

If you have access to your customers’ email addresses and phone numbers, which you obtained usually through some kind of a loyalty program, you can use Facebook’s Custom Audience targeting and the contact info you have to target people who have bought from you in the past.

How to advertise your local business on Facebook?

Objective

Currently, there are about 10 different objectives Facebook ads can strive for and we’ll focus on Store traffic ads, as they drive visitors to your physical store.
It’s usually hard to measure results for offline promotions like store visits, but if the ads are made properly and targeted correctly, they can perform well.

Format

For store traffic ads, you can choose from three different formats:
Image ad — standard image ad format intended to promote a specific location
Video ad — standard video ad format intended to  promote a specific location
Carousel ad — combines images and videos to show details about a specific location

Call to action

Facebook allows page owners to choose the most appropriate call to action (CTA)  to display on their page. There are many different CTAs, but right now we’ll focus on “Get Directions”, and “Call Now”, as they are appropriate for most local businesses:
Get Directions — Allows customers to find the nearest location of the business

Call Now — Allows customers to call the business directly and are displayed once the customers are close to one of your locations

Target

Facebook provides great targeting options for local businesses – you can target people in your business’ direct geographical location, as well as people interested in your services.

For example, if you own a business in Hudson Valley, you could target people in your area that are looking for your services.

Optimization

You can optimize store visit ads either for Reach or Store Visits:

Reach — optimizes for daily unique impressions

Store visits — optimizes to show the ad to people who are most likely to visit your store.

How to measure the ad’s results?

One more important aspect of running an ad is how well is it performing. If you’re using store visits optimization, you should focus on measuring impression count, reach, CPM, store visits, demographics, and cost per store visit metrics:

Impression count — shows how many time was your ad shown on screens

Reach — shows how many time was your ad shown on screens

CPM (cost per mile) — shows the cost of your ad per 1000 impressions

Store visits — estimate how many people visited one of your locations using a range of measurement signals

Demographics — shows the demographic breakdown of your visitor, but only if you have more than 100 visits.

Cost per Store Visit  — estimates the total amount spent divided by store visits

Conclusion

Advertising on Facebook in 2019 is the right thing to do for your local business. However, if you are not experienced with Facebook ads or online advertising in general, you might not get the results you want.

We have concluded that people are using Facebook instead of Google to purchase local goods or services and that driving store visits and online sales is best with achieved with local Facebook ads – especially when using store traffic ads. Store traffic ads are available in three formats – images, videos, and carousel. The best calls to action to use are get directions and call now. You can target people close to one of your locations, as well as people interested in your services. The ads are best optimized for reach and store visits. You should focus on measuring impression count, reach, CPM, store visits, demographics, and cost per store visit metrics.

If all of this sounds a bit too complicated, let the team at H.V. Social Media help you. For more than 3 years, we have been helping Hudson Valley businesses stand out and achieve more with Facebook ads.