With all the buzz surrounding Facebook Reactions, another new Facebook feature may have escaped your attention. Last week, Facebook officially launched Canvas, which they describe as ‘an immersive and expressive experience on Facebook for businesses to tell their stories and showcase their products’. Canvas is a specific tool for advertisers on Facebook. When users click a Facebook News Feed ad connected to Canvas, it opens a full-screen, rich media page inside of Facebook rather than forcing users to wait for a mobile website to load.
It’s good news for Facebook, as they get users to stay within the app longer, but also good news for businesses, as they can now do a lot more with ads. Canvas ads can combine videos, still images and call-to-action buttons. Users will be able to swipe through a carousel of images, tilt to view panoramic images and zoom in to view images in detail – all without actually leaving the Facebook app.
Built for mobile
Canvas has been introduced as a response to the surge towards mobile. Advertisers were having issues with loading speed and display on mobile ads, so Facebook aimed to amend this. Canvas promises ‘to bring your content to life in a fast-loading and seamless experience on Android and iOS’, loading ads as much as 10 times faster than the standard mobile web.
How will this benefit your business?
- Faster loading speed – The ideal action on a Facebook ad is for a consumer to not just click on it, but engage with it, whether that’s through purchasing a product or another activity. Users are likely to spend more time on your ad if it loads quickly. Slow loading speed frustrates users, causing them to click back off the ad. Facebook have reported 53% of users that open a Canvas view at least half of it, and the average view time is 31 seconds.
- More creative control – Canvas allowsinteractive elements like animations, carousels, product catalogues, tilt-to-view images, and videos. This is very exciting for brands, as they can market through a richer, more engaging format.
- Better brand storytelling – Canvas makes your customers’ experience and interaction with your brand more immersive. Than can discover much more about your business through the variety of content Canvas allows.
- Unobtrusive for the user – Facebook users will not suddenly be bombarded with GIFs and videos from brands. Canvas ads appear the same, apart from an upward arrow and a ‘tap to open’ caption, which drives users to view the full Canvas experience. This begs the question of how brands can get their audience to tap on their ad. Check out our blog post on targeted marketing on Facebook for inspiration.
- Easy to create – Facebook have built a Web interface with a real-time live preview, and the best news? No coding or design skills are necessary.
Has Canvas inspired you to accelerate your social media strategy forward? Get in touch with the Digital Glue team for advice.