Whether it’s the season, day of week, or even time of day — all of these can play a major role depending upon your offering.
Seasonality should go without saying. If you’re selling sunglasses, peak seasons are spring and summer. If it’s scarves, you’re looking at heavy spends in fall and winter.
Some products perform better on weekends than they do weekdays. We typically find that the more someone has to think through a purchase decision — usually because of a higher price tag or a great level of research/education needed before buying — the more likely it is that weekends will outperform weekdays. On the same note, these products will typically perform better during early morning and late night hours on weekdays — when people have more time to learn and complete a purchase.
A Word of Caution:
A word of caution, however. On many campaigns, we find that campaign spend spikes disproportionately during the post-work hours, usually about 5-9pm. Since weekday social media traffic is higher this time of day, we find that many campaigns take a hit during these hours for two reasons:
a) This is when people are more likely to casually scroll their feeds and catch up on the day’s posts. It also means they may be less engaged with your ad and landing page.
b) Many potential buyers may be distracted by other things going on in their lives this time of day. They may have kids keeping them busy, dinner to worry about, and other things that prevent them from giving your ad its proper due.
Since social media traffic is higher during this time of day, we see that many campaigns will spend up to one-third of their entire day’s spend during this 4-hour window. This makes this a dangerous window for many advertisers and one that you should surely analyze to see its impact on your own performance.
If this is an issue your campaign faces, what’s the best way for you to get around this? We’ve tried multiple approaches, and while there’s no easy way, here are the two that could potentially work:
a) Pause your campaigns during these hours using automated rules. Of course, you’ll miss out on spend and may not hit your daily budget goals as a result. To get around this, simply raise your daily budgets by enough to offset the loss in spend you’ll see during these hours.
b) Use automated rules to implement lower conversion bids during these hours. We typically see that CTR remains consistent, but it’s conversion rate that takes a hit. This makes good sense since people are presumably busy during these hours and while it doesn’t take extra time to show interest by clicking an ad, it does take extra time to read landing pages, think through purchase decisions, and enter payment info to check out. You can’t rely on Facebook to understand and predict a lower conversion rate during these periods. Once you know your numbers though, you can set your own bid rules to force Facebook to bid for a lower CPA target. You’ll likely see lower CPMs/CPCs as a result, which should help to offset the lower conversion rate and maintain performance. Then automated rules to adjust your bids back to their normal levels once this window has ended.
Amidst all of this, it’s also important to understand that 5pm-7pm on a Wednesday is not the same as 5-7pm on a weekend. Only set these parameters on the days where it makes sense to do so, based on campaign performance.