Weekly Roundup #24 – Facebook Ads, Ransomware and Mobile Audiences

Last week we covered coupons, affiliate marketing for luxury brands and boring email subject lines. As per usual we have a weekly roundup of the latest news and informative resources. We don’t need to explain, you know the drill.

How to Test Facebook Ads to Drive Performance

If you haven’t updated your ads recently, then your frequency is most likely going through the roof. In case you don’t know, your frequency is the amount of times one person sees a specific ad. A high frequency tends to be pretty negative in terms of return on overall ad spend. The acceptable frequency for an ad can vary depending on your customer’s stage of the funnel. When it comes to those who have not visited your website before, aim for a frequency of no more than two. For remarketing ads you’ll want this to be higher, but not above 5. Why? Because it’s less about catching their attention and more about reminding them. You’ll want to give your ads a refresh every now and then either way, so here’s how it’s done:

First: A Warning

When you’re changing ad copy, don’t pick a new headline and image out of nowhere. Take the data from current or past ads to make a better one, or at least test versions of the current one to improve performance.

Testing, Testing!

Unfortunately with the Facebook ads platform, you can’t test rotated ads. The system automatically shows the ads that perform best. There’s no “Rotate Evenly” option on Facebook unlike AdWords, which bums us out. But, there’s a way around everything, although we can’t guarantee this will work.


You can launch two identical ad sets and have a different ad in each, and this means if you want to launch a new one, you’ll most likely need to pause and re-launch the existing ads if you want to submit again. Facebook’s Power Editor makes this an easy but laborious process, but until Facebook sees the light and offers better ad rotation this is what we have to work with.


You need to keep a close eye on the ads yourself to decide what one is working best, otherwise Facebook will just automatically pick the most ‘successful’ ad.

Beating the System

Facebook’s choice of which ad is the ‘successful’ one is pretty much down to statistical significance and this can be really frustrating, and sometimes the best ad isn’t always picked. Michael at Practical eCommerce says: “For example, say we have two ads: one has spent $1,000 and has a cost per acquisition of $100. The other has spent $60, and has a CPA of $20. Which one do we pick? The ad with the CPA of $20, right? Wrong. Even though the CPA is $80 lower, the scale is drastically smaller, so those numbers can’t be trusted.”


To check if your results are statistically adequate, you can use this. Using that tool you can figure out the ad that performed the best for yourself. From here, make your alterations and repeat the process until you’re happy with the results.



Magneto Taking Precautions After Ransomware Attack

magneto ransomware


Or is it?


Magneto Commerce experienced incidents of locked files and Bitcoin ransoms earlier this year, and has taken action against a malicious software attack on merchants’ websites run with their content management system. An extension called .kimcilware encrypted data on the vendor’s server and hackers inserted a file that locked access and then sent a message to one Magneto customer saying “ALL YOUR WEBSERVER FILES HAS BEEN LOCKED. You must send me 1 BTC to unlock all your file. … I will check my Bitcoin if you really send me a BTC I will give you the decryption package to unlock all your files. Hope you enjoy.” The first known attack appeared on February 11th.


Magneto said they removed the extension as a precaution and scanned for malware but didn’t find any evidence of such. They believe the attack is not specific to its own software, but may be more of a general web server vulnerability. Customers were reminded to apply all available software patches for the version of Magneto they’re running. Security experts are saying that complex systems with a great deal of flexibility like Magneto’s can become a huge target to cybercrime due to its open source platform and prebuilt modules. They decline to confirm the dates of the attacks but say they’re aware of 4 retailer websites affected by it.

3 Email Marketing Tips to Drive More Sales

Who doesn’t want more sales? There’s a million and one ways you can test the effectiveness of your email marketing, but here are 3 tips from Practical eCommerce we thought we’d share with you:

Follow-up Triggers

Your email subscribers will be used to seeing your company name as the “From” name in their inbox and shoppers tend to open them when they’re in the market to buy, or when they see a deal that’s just too good to pass up. To grab the attention of email subscribers and to differentiate from standard promotional emails, change the “From” part of your email to a variation of your site name or – plot twist – to an individual’s name.


Use Advanced Tools

Inexpensive and powerful email marketing tools do exist, and two recommended by Practical eCommerce are Litmus and Email on Acid. Using these, you can email creative previews to see how the email renders and spot potential issues. You can also do an email deliverability test by sending an email to the tool and it’ll analyse how that email will deliver based on the IP, the domain and the creative side of it.


Shorten Promotion or Offer Time on Mobile

With mobile usage at an all time high, we can safely say mobile users tend to be a bit impulsive – no offense. To take advantage of this, you can create shorter sale periods and highlight certain products that are good for one day only. Cheeky, but it might just work.

3 Ways to Use Facebook Custom Audience to Boost ROI


When you consider the fact that 1 billion people use Facebook each day, thats a huge eCommerce opportunity. But what do you do when sometimes users don’t convert the first time around? That’s when you should turn to this guide regarding Facebook Custom Audiences from Internet Retailer.

Cart Abandonment

The people who have abandoned your cart are the best people to target due to their existing interest in your product. Sure they left, but that could’ve been for any reason. Until you figure that out, lower the chances of it happening again by remarketing. You can create a FCA of people who have visited certain sections of your webiste, within a certain amount of time, and more.


This audience will be one of your larger ones, but it’s the most important. You got people to click onto your website organically, but they bounced before even adding to a cart. Remarketing to them with the custom audience below will not only give you a great click through rate, but it’s the most likely audience behind cart abandoners to purchase from you.

Email List Segments

The people who signed up to your email list are the ones really interested in your brand. They’re the “repeat traffic” visitors that consistently provide the best ROI. Upload your email list to Facebook and from this create a lookalike audience. This is a great way of finding the people most likely to be interested in your brand through a range of variables such as age, demographic, or similar interests to users on your email list. You can also upload the email list to find the users on Facebook who may have not even known you had a page.

Using Google Analytics to Understand Your Social and Mobile Audiences

google analytics

Source: Crazyegg.com


The number of smartphones in use is set to reach 2.06 billion by the end of this year, so it’s key that we understand what people are doing with them, and how we can harness their behaviour to better improve our conversion. Here are two ways you can use Google Analytics to better understand your audiences:


Set Up Viewing Segments

When you log into Google Analytics, create a new segment to the dashboard view. You’re able to choose from the options in the drop down list. For example, you could compare all traffic with mobile and tablet traffic as the image above shows.


Examine Your Audience

Once you’ve got your segments setup, segmented data for all of the Google Analytics reports will now be visible and you can use this to note and analyse how and why behaviour differs. A broad overview helps you gain a basic understanding of users’ behavior and from here you can theorise a way to help your conversion optimisation strategy. From this you can gather:


  • – The ages and genders of your mobile audience
  • – If there’s a difference between interests and market segments of different device users
  • – How much of your overall traffic mobile users take up
  • – Does device usage differ depending on location?


It’s even possible to observe what browsers people are using and even tell what mobile devices they’re using to visit your website.



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Sebastian Paszek

Marketing manager

Controlling the chaos of the digital landscape, Sebastian is a multiplatform executive, project manager and photographer.