How to Drive Traffic to Your Website with Facebook!
One of the most common questions we get from clients is: “How can I drive traffic to my website using Facebook?”
It’s a great question, and one all businesses with a social media presence should be answering… the right way.
Often we find brands go after the easiest methods to drive traffic when they should be finding the best ways. It’s an important distinction to make. Easy is often expensive. Best is always more beneficial.
Facebook is one of the best social media sites for marketing. No surprise there. It dominates social media with over 70% market share. Generates $84.2 billion in annual ad revenue. And has 1.73 billion daily active users, up 11% year-over-year. For brands all this adds up to Facebook generating the highest ROAS amongst social media sites and more than 80% of all U.S. social referrals to eCommerce sites. Again, no surprise given that 78% of American consumers say they discover products to buy via Facebook.
While those stats are very impressive, they don’t mean much to your business just by themselves. That is unless you are successfully funnelling traffic to your site from Facebook. Which is why knowing what digital marketing strategies work best, and what Facebook tools are available, is crucial to being able to grow your success.
So let’s make these stats benefit your business by looking at how to increase website traffic through Facebook for your site — in the best ways possible.
Paid social vs. organic social: which drives more traffic?
The best place to start is to figure out which channel to target. For Facebook, this means choosing between sharing organic content or promoting paid content.
- Organic Content on Facebook: Free content that users share with one another on Facebook, like posts, photos, videos, stories, etc. It is best used to nurture existing customers.
- Paid Content on Facebook: Content brands pay money to share with specific audiences on Facebook. It is best used to target prospects and convert them to customers.
Typically, paid social provides better ROIs than organic social, especially when it comes to driving traffic to your site.
But don’t discount organic entirely.
After all, we live in an omnichannel marketing world. Relying solely on one channel is not enough, and every channel you market through should work together as a whole. Facebook’s paid and organic content is a perfect example of this principle in practice. Together they allow you to effectively target the entire sales funnel — whether it’s Tofu, Mofu or Bofu.
It’s worth noting organic content can become paid content via “boosting.” No doubt you’ve heard of it. There’s a good chance you’ve even tried it. Who can blame you? It’s so easy. Boosting a post involves paying to promote a piece of previously shared organic content beyond its normal reach. (As opposed to designing unique creative via Facebook Ads.) When it comes to driving traffic to your site using Facebook, it’s usually best to opt for custom Facebook Ads over a boosted post. Boosting may be easier but Facebook Ads provides more control, which is always better.
What Facebook ad type drives the most traffic?
The different types of ads available on Facebook (also known as ad formats) are:
- Image Ads
- Video Ads
- Carousel Ads
- Collection Ads
- Slideshow Ads
- Messenger Ads
Each of these ad type offers a different set of advantages if your ultimate goal is to drive traffic from Facebook to your website. (For more details check out the 16 benefits of advertising on Facebook.) The business analytics company Databox polled paid media experts and video, image and carousel were the preferred ad types for driving website traffic.
As with everything in digital marketing, we recommend testing to see which formats work best for you. But if you’re looking for a place to start go with those three.
More than likely though the best way to optimize your ad spend will be to implement a combination of these formats. For example, you might use video ads to build brand awareness and grow your audience on Facebook, then follow-up with image ads retargeting that audience for direct website clicks.
Pick the best ad objective for driving traffic
When creating a campaign, before you even pick your ad type you have to choose an “ad objective.” Think of ad types and ad objectives as the one-two punch of driving traffic to your site.
There are three different objectives for Facebook ads:
Each of these objectives in turn have several sub-objectives.
You can probably guess which one is best for driving traffic to your site. (Hint: It’s “Traffic.”)
The Traffic objective is specifically designed to generate website referral traffic and optimize CTR to your landing pages. Or at least it will be once you specify in your Ad Set which type of traffic you want to focus on.
Facebook’s ad objectives aren’t merely categorizations created by Facebook for an advertiser’s reference. They play an intricate role in the traffic-driving success of your ad. When you set an objective to drive traffic to your website, Facebook’s algorithms will prioritize showing your ads to users with a strong history of clicking through to websites.
Optimize your ad delivery for higher traffic ROI
Once your ad objective is set, you next want to optimize your ad’s delivery method. This is done at the bottom of the Ad Set when setting up a campaign in Facebook Ads Manager.
Here you’ll find four options to choose from:
- Landing Page Views
- Link Clicks
- Daily Unique Reach
Of these we recommend you select “Landing Page Views.” This option is the best for businesses wondering how to increase website traffic through Facebook – since its primary purpose is to help grow website traffic.
In order to be able to choose “Landing Page Views” you will need to add the Facebook pixel to your site first. Once you do, Facebook will try to show your ad to users who are most likely to view your page.
Emphasis on the word view.
If someone clicks the link in your ad, it doesn’t necessarily mean they viewed your page. A lot of things can happen in the interim. Maybe the page didn’t load properly. Maybe the user exited out before it loaded. Maybe the user’s computer exploded. Who knows. Point is, you have a better chance of decreasing bounce rates and driving meaningful traffic by optimizing for “Landing Page Views” over “Link Clicks.”
But don’t take our word for it. Here’s what Facebook has to say on the matter:
“If your goal is to get more traffic on a specific page (or specific pages) of your website: We recommend landing page view optimization over link click optimization, since the former can improve traffic quality.”
With “Landing Page Views” you’ll lower your cost per click (CPC), increase your click through rate (CTR) and laser-focus your ads reach, all of which adds up to more traffic to your site. And less money spent on getting it.
Optimize your landing pages for higher quality traffic
There’s one thing in particular that stands out in that quote from Facebook above. They highlight the value of improving quality traffic.
Knowing how to drive traffic to your website with Facebook isn’t very valuable if that traffic doesn’t interact with your site content. In fact, it could be harmful to your site if they don’t. (Bounce rates are one reason.) High traffic volumes might look good, but only if the visitor sticks around and does things on your site, like visit other pages, contact you, sign up for a newsletter, buy a product, etc…
That’s why optimizing your landing pages is so crucial.
When optimizing your pages for higher traffic the goal is to create landing page content that mirrors ad content.
This means the images, videos and messaging of your ad and landing page should be very, very similar. Ideally, your page content will act as a continuation of your ad content so it lives up to the promise promoted by your ad.
The result is better user retention.
Rarely, is a landing page an end unto itself. Think of it more as the middle person between your Facebook ad and your business goals. In order to get from one to the other your landing page needs to retain the traffic that your ad hooked, and funnel it to the rest of your site.
Quality on-site content sells itself
Another important part of knowing how to drive traffic to your website with Facebook is to give site visitors the high-quality on-site content they actually care about.
Like we mentioned above, matching your ad content with your landing page is great for boosting ad performance metrics and reducing bounce.
But there’s also something incredibly valuable about good old fashioned quality. It’s easy to lose the forest for the trees by focusing too much on sales language, KPIs, and pushing your brand. But high-quality on-site content that actually provides value goes along way to increasing traffic organically. If it’s actually good, it can drive traffic from Facebook to your website based on shares, in-bound interest, and even virality.
Don’t just think about the money, think about making the user happy.
Think about what your target audience’s ultimate goal is, and then help them get there. If they have a question, answer it in detail. If they’re researching a product or a service, give concrete, accurate information. If they’re looking to convert, easily guide them to the next stage of the funnel. Build content that is “EAT” or Expert, Authoritative, and Trustworthy. Ultimately if it’s good, then they’ll come to you. This means that your content will get more shares across the Facebook platform, appear more frequently in the algorithm, encourage more interactions, and spread more widely – all on its own.
This can include on-site informational pages, About Us pages, blog posts, guides, category pages, multi-media website content, FAQ pages, and more. When done right these can be great ways to generate organic shares off-site.
Facebook even provides tools like its Creator Studio to help individuals and business create and monitor their content marketing.
This can mean more natural, more organic results that drive traffic to your website.
Don’t forget to drive traffic with Instagram ads
Instagram boasts roughly 1 billion monthly active users. So don’t just settle on driving Facebook users to your site. Up the ante and extend your ad campaigns to Instagram as well to get more bang-for-the-buck. Fortunately, Facebook makes it really easy to cross-promote between the two platforms.
Just be sure when creating ads for Instagram that you’re not using the same creative meant for Facebook.
To optimize the performance of your ads, and ensure they drive higher quality traffic, we recommend creating one campaign specifically intended for Facebook and a second campaign specifically targeting Instagram. The two campaigns can use very similar images and copy, but by separating them you ensure those images appear properly according to each platform’s requirements and that copy best suits the audience.
Update your Facebook Business Page to increase organic traffic
So far we’ve been focusing on paid content. While we believe this is the best way to drive traffic to your website with Facebook, it’s not the only way.
As we said earlier, don’t discount the power of organic content.
That’s easy to do these days, considering the average reach for organic Facebook posts is 5.2%. Which means only about 5.2% of your followers ever see your non-paid content on Facebook.
But this disheartening stat fails to take into account one key component: Paid content drives organic engagement on Facebook. Just think of how many times you’ve seen an ad or post on Facebook and clicked the profile name at the top instead of the content in its body.
Each one of those times was another chance to generate website traffic.
That’s why your Facebook business page should contain an abundance of opportunities to drive traffic to your site. These opportunities exist in the form of engaging page banners, timeline posts, sidebar content, and everything else that goes on a profile page. And they still offer the bonus of increasing brand recognition and helping you get more out of your content strategy.
So if you feel like keeping your Facebook page up-to-date is a lost cause, don’t. Especially if you advertise on Facebook. You might be missing out on easy (and free) opportunities to boost website traffic.
Next step: drive site traffic from Facebook over the long term
There’s one very important component that’s been missing from our tips above: your brand.
Best practices open doors in the short term, strong branding builds growth over the long. So we’ll be the first to admit, our advice can only take you so far.
Important to know? Yes.
But to take your traffic driving strategies to the next level we need to speak to your brand and business specifically. Something that just can’t be done in a single article publicly posted to our site. But it can be done over a one-on-one phone call.
So when you’re ready to tailor these tactics to your brand, get in touch to discuss how to drive more traffic with Facebook.
Your customers engage with your business because your brand and your product and your services speak to them. Nurture that relationship with your Facebook content. This will help you tap into that most coveted of marketing metrics — repeat traffic. Because it is a wonderful thing to drive traffic to your site with Facebook. But it’s even better to keep them coming back for more.
Get in touch with our team to learn more about how to drive traffic to your website with Facebook-central marketing strategies.