Facebook Ads Not Converting? It Might Not be Your Facebook Ad… (3 Non-Ad Problems that Kill Sales Conversions Even if You Have the Best Facebook Ads on the Planet)

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As a Facebook Ad copywriter, my natural instinct is to glorify ad copy. Why?

…Great ad copy has the power to grab prospects by the throat when they’d rather be watching cat videos…

…Great ad copy can burrow deep into the emotional centres of your prospect’s brain and make buying from you the ONLY logical next step…

…Most importantly, great ad copy can trigger huge mental shifts that compel prospects to change their life for the better. 

The byproduct of all this is that you get to experience higher sales, higher revenue and rapid business growth. It’s why I’m so passionate about my craft. It’s also why I despair at the amount of drab sales copy I read when I scroll through my Facebook Newsfeed.


…despite everything I believe about killer Facebook ad copy there are a few challenges even the greatest ad copy cannot overcome. 

At the agency where I work, clients often blame their ad creative when performance isn’t what they expect. Yes, our messaging is sometimes off. Yes, our imagery sometimes underperforms. And yes, sometimes we haven’t quite nailed our audience targeting.

It’s why we test...

Through testing, we can isolate the source of an ad’s conversion problem. When we target new audiences or tweak our ad creative (ad copy and images) we look at the performance data so we can do more of what works.

Sounds simple, right?

A lot of the time this works. But other times it doesn’t. Sometimes, no matter what we do, we just can’t seem to hit our client’s conversion targets. 

It’s the same for many business owners I speak to outside the agency. Often, they’re frustrated that they can’t get their Facebook ads to work. They’ve tried EVERYTHING but nothing seems to convert.

If that sounds like you, it’s probably not your Facebook ad that’s the problem. It’s likely that there’s another (possibly bigger) issue that’s creating most of your conversion drama.  

Working at the agency, I’ve found 3 main problems that kill sales conversions even if you have the best Facebook ads on the planet.   

1) Facebook Ads cannot fix a crappy offer

When you run an advertising campaign you need to offer some kind of inducement or incentive to get people to buy. The reason for this is simple. You’re asking cold prospects to risk their money on someone (or something) they don’t know.

For brand new buyers, it feels like gambling. It’s likely they’re feeling A LOT of resistance. They have ALL the reasons not to buy. And far fewer reasons to part with their money. It’s why, it’s up to you to make buying a no-brainer.

For sure, the process of overcoming buyer resistance starts with your ad copy. If you present a weak sales argument, you’ve already blown it before they reach the ‘Learn More’ button. 

But what if you’ve made a water-tight sales argument? By this point, your prospect is very close to reaching into their wallet. They just need one, final nudge to get them to take the risk.

That nudge is your offer. Sadly, many business owners massively overlook their front-end offer. Doing so leaves their Facebook ad powerless to convert. Here are some offers you might consider to sweeten the deal and boost your ad conversion rate:

  • 50% Off 
  • FREE (plus shipping)
  • Buy one get one FREE
  • One Month’s FREE trial
  • Your first month for £1
  • FREE taster session 
  • Time-limited flash sale
  • FREE gift with purchase 
  • Cashback

There are countless offers you can make to buyers to ethically bribe them to take a risk. Why not ramp up your offer and see what happens to your conversion rate?

2) Limp landing page? Why you might as well shut off your Facebook Ads

In my last point I mentioned having a watertight sales argument. Truth is, Facebook Ads are only capable of doing part of the necessary persuasion to generate a sales conversion. It’s why you need to drive Facebook Ad clickers to a killer landing page. 

Now, in theory your Facebook ad could actually be an entire sales letter. The character limit for body copy on Facebook is around 63,206 characters. That’s around 10,000 words (which would be loooong sales letter). 

However, with so many distractions and notifications pinging around Facebook, even the world’s best copywriter would struggle to hold a prospect’s focus in the Newsfeed over 10,000 words.

It’s why your Facebook ad should say as little as necessary to pre-frame the sale before your prospect gets distracted by a dancing cat.

Once you’ve pulled your prospect away from the cats, pings and flashing distractions on Facebook, you can then work to persuade them to buy your product.

Here’s the problem…

Most landing pages suck. Very few I’ve seen could excite and interest a prospect long enough to generate a sale. Bad landing pages are everywhere, and they kill Facebook ad performance – no matter how great the ad. It’s crazy really. Why spend time, money and energy on driving traffic to a landing page, if the landing page is going to undo all your hard work?  

The lesson here is to spend A LOT of time researching, outlining and writing your sales page so it grabs, holds and persuades your hard-won lead. 

3) Why Facebook Ads Can Never Overcome an Unclear or Non-Existent USP

Let’s face it, very few of us will ever uncover brand new, untapped markets. Most of us don’t have the appetite or Research and Development budget to disrupt entire industries or create brand new ones from thin air. That’s totally OK. I don’t want that either! 

Like most business owners, I just want to make a decent living, doing what I love and helping other people. Nothing wrong with that.

It’s why 99.9% of businesses sell ‘Me Too’ products into competitive, saturated markets. It’s also why many advertising efforts fail. What’s the No.1 problem with operating in a saturated market? It’s standing out amongst a sea of hungry competitors fighting it out for a share of your prospects’ cash.

This is why your USP is so important. We recently worked with a new brand that had no USP. They wanted to charge a premium for a product nobody had heard of, which had no identifiable benefit versus the competition. They were also entering a highly competitive market with clear brand leaders. 

Our only option was to test SUPER ‘out there’ ad creative, which the CEO was reluctant to try. In the end, we had to admit defeat and the agency and client parted ways. 

While not impossible, this kind of undifferentiated product is very difficult to sell to cold traffic at a profit (or even break-even). Sure, you could lower your prices but that’s a sure-fire route to bankruptcy!

If you’re struggling to identify a clear and genuine USP for your products and services it’s likely that your Facebook ads will remain unprofitable unless you do one of three things:

  1. Sell with Story – in the absence of a USP, let your story attract attention and create an emotional connection with your buyers. Your aim is to sell with such intense emotion that you bypass the need for logic and reason to sell your product at a premium price.
  2. Improve your product – no one likes to admit they’ve got a samey product. But if you’re struggling to sell, it might be time to stop blaming your ads. Instead, focus on developing a product that is genuinely unique.
  3. Shift your expectations – Selling undifferentiated products is not completely impossible BUT it does require you to re-think the length of your sales cycle. To sell a ‘Me Too’ product with no USP you must rely on relationships to close the sale over time. What does that mean? Well, you could run Facebook ads to a FREE lead magnet instead of a paid product. Then, you could use email to build a relationship and convert sales over time (say, 60-90 days). 

Here’s the reality – Facebook ads are powerful. I’ve seen many businesses grow enormously thanks to the traffic they were able to generate through Facebook. But, your Facebook ad is not the only thing that can make or break your business.

Here’s a quick recap of the the Non-Facebook Ad problems that kill sales conversions even if you have the best Facebook Ads on the planet: 

  1. Make sure you drive traffic to a great offer that makes buying your product NOW a no-brainer 
  2. Have a killer landing page that grabs, holds and persuades prospects so they’re emotionally triggered to buy
  3. Have a clear USP or if you don’t, reset your expectations and objectives for your Facebook Ad campaigns. 

Want the secret to cranking out profitable Facebook Ad Copy in minutes

…even if you’ve never written a Facebook ad before?

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