Before you start to run ads to your website, use this checklist to ensure that your website is ready otherwise you will waste your money!

1. Check the speed of your website. How quickly does your page load? Are some images slowing it down? Go to Pingdom and check your website speed for free. If a user clicks on your ad and the page takes longer than usual to load, the user will give up, but you would have paid Facebook for that click.

2. Have a look at your website, ask some colleagues and friends to help you. What is the customer experience like? Does everything work like it should? Is the branding all correct, are you using the same fonts throughout the site?

3. If you are an ecommerce site, do you have enough trust proof on the site e.g. an SSL secure logo, Paypal verified etc. This again instils confidence that you are a reputable site and they are protected if anything goes wrong with their order.

4. Do you have testimonials on there from past clients / shoppers? This gives the user confidence that other customers have had a great experience.

So you have checked all of the above and you are ready to start running ads. Now use this checklist below to ensure that the experience for the user is a good one.

1. Have you added the correct URL in the ad? If you want it to direct to a particular part of your website, ensure that the correct URL is in the ad.

2. Is the landing page clear? Does the information on the page correlate with the information on the ad? Facebook will check this and penalise ads if the landing page copy is not congruent with the ad copy. So you will end up spending more money to reach the same people.

3. Is there a clear call to action on the page? Have you made it clear for the user to perform the action that you want them to do? E.g. pay for something, give their email address etc

If you simply do not have the money or the time to update your website, there are other options.

1. If you just need some data from you user, i.e. email address, name, you can use the ‘Lead Generation’ option when you set up your ad. This does not divert to your website, but rather to a form that you can set up in Facebook.

2. Another option is to create a standalone landing page. These are highly recommended, as there is no way for the consumer to browse off them. The only option on there would be your call to action, e.g. sign up to a free webinar for your course etc. A high converting landing page can be complicated to set up and needs to have approximately 50 checkpoints signed off for us to approve it for our clients.

By Natasha Fitzpatrick

Natasha is Facebook Ads Strategist specialising in helping businesses increase sales and generate leads.

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