Instagram vs Facebook Ads: Which One is Better for eCommerce Store?

Instagram vs Facebook Ads: Which One is Better for eCommerce Store?

Instagram vs Facebook Ads, which one works better for your eCommerce store? Both the platforms are most interactive and used social media platforms. Although Facebook is older and has a larger user base, Instagram is steadily gaining popularity, especially with the heavy adoption of new features like Instagram Stories.

If your brand is active on both Facebook and Instagram, the best approach is to activate ad campaigns on both networks. But with a fixed or tight marketing budget, you may need to ask yourself where you should devote the bulk of your ad expense: Facebook vs Instagram Ads. The answer can be determined by identifying which platform will bring in the most revenue for your eCommerce store.

This article will help you to launch a successful social media marketing campaign through the right channel.

Instagram vs Facebook Ads

Facebook vs Instagram Ads: What They Offer?

Among all social media platforms there are two most interactive and popular and can give you a remarkable ROI. And they are Facebook and Instagram.

Facebook, as you already know, is the most biggest social media platform. Since its launch in 2004, Facebook has grown so much that the average number of daily users are 372 millions as of 1st quarter 2019. Although it’s original mission was to help people stay in touch with their friends and family, nowadays, it also helps business reach their customers through advertising.

Instagram, on the other hand, is a younger platform than Facebook. Launched in 2010, Instagram is the home for visual storytelling for everyone: photographers, artists, celebrities, teens, brands and others. After its launch, it immediately gained popularity and in January 2019, photo sharing platform Instagram reported 500 million daily active Stories users worldwide.

In fact, after watching the rapid growth, Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, decided to buy it in April, 2012.

Now, it’s obvious and fact that both platforms are great for advertising.

Let’s check out.

Instagram vs Facebook Ads: Algorithm of Both Platform


  1. Engagement – How many hearts, likes and comments on each post.
  2. Relevancy – Are the post relevant to the user?
  3. Relationships – Posts from any accounts that the user interacts with more frequently are ranked higher than other.
  4. Timeliness – More recent posts are ranked higher.
  5. Profile searches – Posts from any accounts that users search for regularly are ranked higher.
  6. Direct shares – Posts from any accounts the user directly shares with others are ranked higher, and the person who receives the shared posts gets a rank boost on their own posts.
  7. Time spent on post – The time actually spent looking at a post (without scrolling).


  1. Friends and family – Posts from people the user knows are ranked higher. This is very important because it means posts from brands are demoted.
  2. Engagement – How many likes, comments and shares the post receives, considering time.
  3. Encouraging engagement – Posts start to a conversation are ranked higher.
  4. Images and videos – Visual posts are ranked higher than text-only posts.
  5. Bait is demoted – Posts that aggressively bait for likes, shares, comments, votes or tags are not ranked higher.
  6. Promotional posts are demoted – Posts trying to push people into buying a product/service or join a contest are demoted and ranked lower.

Facebook vs Instagram Ads: Customer Engagement With Brands

There are over 60 million Business Pages on Facebook.

Although many users Like or follow a Facebook Business Page, only 32% of them engage with brands on Facebook regularly by sharing content, leaving comments and asking different questions.

On the other hand, 70.7% of US companies use Instagram for marketing purposes. Many created Instagram Business Profiles and advertise regularly. Moreover, 80% of users follow a business on Instagram and 68% of them engage with brands on a regular basis.

Now, question is, since Instagram has higher brand engagement, would you receive more views, shares and comments when posting any content or ad on Instagram rather than on Facebook? Interestingly, it is not.

Although Facebook has lower brand engagement, it daily gets over 8 billion video views. Instagram, on the other hand, does great with photos. So, it will be a good practice to invest in Video Ads on Facebook and Photo Ads on Instagram.

Facebook vs Instagram Ads: Target Audience

Facebook might not be the best social media platform in terms of customer engagement with brands, but, since it’s one of the oldest social media platforms, it has an enormous audience worldwide.

According to research by statista, the active users on Facebook are both men and women from all different ages. However, the most active users are 25-34 years old men.

Instagram, on the other hand, has a not as much audience as Facebook. According to a statistics by statista show that although both men and women use Instagram, the active users are not equal in different ages groups. It is found that Instagram’s main audience is 18 to 34 years old men and women.

Thus, if you’re trying to reach women from younger generations, you should advertise on Instagram. If your target audience is young men, then you have equal chances of reaching them on both of this platforms.

Older generations are not so active on either platform. However, you’ve much greater chances of reaching them on Facebook rather than on Instagram.

Facebook vs Instagram Ads: Mobile-Friendliness and Users

There is not much different in Facebook when accessed via mobile app or via a web browser on a PC. The only difference you may find is in layout and overall design. However, you can check all the activities as well as read and create posts both via mobile and desktop. And you can also easily access Messenger from both devices. So, we can say Facebook is perfectly optimized for desktop, laptop as well as mobile platform.

Instagram, on the other hand, has lacks on desktop platform. It puts some limitations on users when they log in through a Web browser. For example, you can’t easily upload photos, edit the existing posts or watch Instagram stories. It’s been created mainly for mobile users to share interesting moments of their lives instantly.

Thus, when you want to do some advertising, on Facebook it doesn’t matter which platform you are going to use. On Instagram, on the other hand, you have to do all via an android or smartphone app.

According to a research by statista shows that 95.1% of active users access Facebook via smartphone, 31.8% via laptop and desktop, and only 8.8% via tablets. On the other hand in Instagram, hardly anybody accesses the platform via laptops and PCs. Most users access it either via smartphone or tablet.

That means, if you want to launch your social media marketing campaign on Facebook, you should optimize your content for mobile usage. And for Instagram, you have no other choice but to make all your posts and/or ads mobile-friendly.

Facebook vs Instagram Ads: Ads Types

If you look at Facebook Ads Guide you can notice that there are many different types of ads available on Facebook. In fact, there are 11 types of ads available you can choose from:

  1. Video Ads: Videos up to 15 seconds with subtitles.
  2. Image Ads: An eye-catchy image accompanied by a message.
  3. Collection Ads: A cover photo or video followed by a few product photos.
  4. Carousel Ads: You can show up to 10 images (or videos) in a single ad, each with its own link.
  5. Slideshow Ads: The ads looks like video, which use motion, sound and text to tell your story.
  6. Facebook Instant Experiences/Canvas Ads: Mobile-optimized ads that show all your product videos, photos and carousels in a single ad.
  7. Lead Generation Ads: Basically capture user’s information.
  8. Offer Ads: Allow you to create and extend discounts and promotions to your target audience.
  9. Post Engagement Ads/Boosted Posts: This ads help you share information about your business with users.
  10. Event Response Ads: This one help you to promote events.
  11. Page Likes: It can be used to drive your audience to Like your Facebook Page.

Although all above ads can give you great results, but there are a few that are the most engaging, and can give you a remarkable ROI and they are Facebook Carousel Ads and Facebook Collection Ads.

On the other hand, there are only 4 types of ads available for you to choose from on Instagram:

  1. Photo Ads: This ads allow you to showcase your products through photos.
  2. Video Ads: Video ads can be up to 60 seconds.
  3. Carousel Ads: Through this ads users can swipe through up to 10 images or videos, each with a CTA button that connects them to your website.
  4. Stories Ads: It is a full-screen ads in which you can share photos and videos with your audience.

Although, there are fewer types of ads on Instagram than on Facebook. But there is a remarkable one and it is Stories Ads.

Stories ads are better than feed ads. A study by Agora Pulse shows that Instagram Stories Ads have a 23% higher conversion rate than Feed Ads and have 78% more Clicks.

Also, since Stories Ads are versatile, they give you a lot of space for creativity and allow you to launch many different types of social media campaigns.

Facebook vs Instagram Ads: Costs

Cost is the vital factor for social media marketing campaign.

No matter the platform is, every social media marketing campaign is costly. Facebook ads aren’t cheap. Although the average Cost Per Click (CPC) equals only $0.27 and Cost Per thousand Impressions (CPM) $7.19, there are many factors that can influence on the cost of your ads:

  • Ad objective,
  • Bidding type and amount,
  • Target audience,
  • Quality of Ad,
  • Your business industry.

Thus, at the end, the figure comes much more than you thought.

Instagram advertising isn’t also cheaper. The average CPC is $1.41 and CPM $7.91. But the cost of ads are influenced by a number of factors ranging from your audience to your ad feedback.

Since the ads cost are almost same in the both platform, remember that both Facebook and Instagram ads, can give you a high ROI. But, you ahve to choose the right ads types.

Here are a few tips that will help you to start your social media campaign on a limited budget:

  1. Spend your money on those ads that best fit your plan.
  2. Make sure to create ads purposely.
  3. Treat social media marketing advertising as an investment, not a cost, and expect a revenue from it.
  4. Target the right audience and narrow it down.
  5. Use hashtags.
  6. Invest in quality, not quantity. Try to give surprise to your audience with your videos, images and pictures of your products.

Which is the cheapest for beginners to get started?

If you have minimum budget you can get started with Instagram. On the other hand, Facebook needs lot of money when it comes to running a campaign.

Initially, you have to invest $450 to $500 if you want to use Facebook for marketing purpose. Surprisingly, Instagram gives you much higher return on investment than Facebook ads cost.

What makes the most money?

On this surface Instagram looks more profitable. But still, Facebook will provide more value and benefits over the course of time. Moreover, Facebook delivers more customer reach when it comes to using Facebook for your brand promotion.

Conversely, Instagram ads have some limitations, as you cannot post the same content quite often. There is no doubt that testing on Facebook is much easier than testing on Instagram.

Instagram vs Facebook Ads: Wrapping Up

We hope we have made clear while describing Instagram vs Facebooks ads comparison in detail. Both Facebook and Instagram offer great value in terms of social media marketing campaigns. It depends what you are expecting from your campaign then select the right platform.

You should clarify your goals and expectations for your ad campaign first. If you do so, you can attain hidden benefits from the both platforms appropriately. However, it again depends on which platform is suitable for your marketing requirements.

Do you have any experiences with either Facebook or Instagram ads? Share your experiences in the Leave a Reply section below.


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