The Difference Between Converting on Facebook and Google

Last updated on by Fahad Muhammad in Conversion Optimization

Most online advertising now takes place on two primary options—Facebook and Google Ads. While both advertising giants offer marketers targeting capabilities, automation options, and multiple campaign objectives, one thing sets these platforms apart—search intent.

Google typically shows searchers ads based on their specific searches, while Facebook users receive ads based on their demographics, interests, location, and behaviors.

You can think of Google Search ads as pull advertising and Facebook Ads as push advertising. Search ads answer the call from potential customers seeking more information. Facebook puts on-platform ads in front of potential customers to convince them to become part of the advertiser’s conversion journey.

How does the search intent factor affect advertising conversions on each platform? Let’s find out.

What role does search intent play in Google search ads?

Prospects searching on Google know what they want. They’re looking for something specific, and they’ve come to Google to find it.

They may be open to new or better solutions to the problem they’re seeking to solve, within their search parameters. It is up to the advertiser to make sure users see their ad when they’re looking for answers—and the best way to achieve this is with a high Quality Score.

Quality Score measures your ad quality in comparison to other advertisers.

A higher Quality Score means your ad and landing page are more relevant and valuable to someone searching for your keyword compared to other advertisers. Google calculates this metric on a scale of one to 10 based on the combined performance of the following three components:

  • Expected clickthrough rate (CTR): The likelihood that your ad gets clicked
  • Ad relevance: How closely your ad matches the intent behind a user’s search
  • Landing page experience: How relevant and useful your landing page is to people who click your ad

Selecting relevant keywords for your search audiences allows you to get a high Quality Score, which gets your ads in front of your target audience. Here’s how you get your ad relevance right:

  • Match the language of your ad text more directly to the user’s search term
  • Look for many different keywords that the same ad can’t efficiently address. Split ads into multiple groups that better match the user’s searches
  • Try organizing your keywords into themes based on your products, user benefits, etc. to increase relevance

For example, someone searching for project management solutions will see the following ads for “easy project management solutions for small teams.” All ads contain the search keywords in the user’s query. Which ad the prospect clicks depends on how closely the ad text matches their wants.

Someone searching for project management solutions will see the following ads for “easy project management solutions for small teams.” All ads contain the search keywords in the user’s query. Which ad the prospect clicks depends on how closely the ad text matches their wants.

The ClickUp ad appears in the first position, features most of the keywords in the ad text, and gives the chance to “Start for free.” Beyond the ad click, ClickUp’s landing page stays relevant to the search query.

A ClickUp ad appears in the first position, features most of the keywords in the ad text, and gives the chance to “Start for free.” Beyond the ad click, ClickUp’s landing page stays relevant to the search query.

The page headline and subheadline reiterate that the tool will manage all projects in one place. It features a five-star customer review and the CTA to sign up for the platform for free without entering any credit card information.

To get advertising conversions on your Google Search ads, it’s essential to understand that relevance shouldn’t stop with the ad. If you want the ad click to translate into advertising conversions and not waste your advertising dollars, you must connect every ad with a compatible, optimized, personalized page, similar to what ClickUp does.

What role does brand awareness play in Facebook Ads?

Unlike Google Search, Facebook users don’t actively search for solutions. However, the platform can still target them for ads based on their online behavior, interests, location, demographics, etc.

So, while Facebook users might not be “searching” for a specific solution, Facebook tracks user activity off-platform and includes this in “interests” alongside on-platform indicators, like following a Group or Page, to display ads that will be compelling to them.

Where Google Search is specific in answering prospect needs and pursuits in the moment, Facebook takes a more holistic approach.

The Apple iOS 14 update has affected Facebook Ads in terms of conversions, domain verification, ads reporting, and targeting. Facebook has created the “Aggregated Event Measurement” protocol to help marketers measure how campaigns perform in a way that is consistent with consumers’ decisions about their data.

Facebook Ads allow you to generate awareness and interest for your product. What Facebook lacks in user on-platform search intent, it makes up for in its myriad of targeting capabilities. The platform measures your ad’s relevance to audiences via the ad quality metric.

Higher-quality ads perform better in the auction to help create seamless experiences for users. Ad quality depends on many sources, including feedback from people viewing or hiding the ad and assessing low-quality attributes and practices. To get ad clicks and conversions, your ads and landing pages must be relevant and valuable to your target audience.

Creating relevant, optimized Facebook ads is about understanding user behavior and interests and developing an ad that perfectly describes what they’re looking for. For instance, Calm—an app for mental fitness designed to help you manage stress, sleep better, and live a more balanced life—can target users interested in mental health, wellness, and happiness.

Converting users on the landing page involves following through with the offer on the ad, staying on-brand, and ensuring there’s message match. Calm follows these best practices with the following Facebook ad and landing page.

Converting users on the landing page involves following through with the offer on the ad, staying on-brand, and ensuring there’s message match. Calm follows these best practices with the following Facebook ad and landing page.

A landing page for Calm that features a customer review count, customer testimonials, user benefits, and the chance to sign up for a free seven-day trial.

The ad and landing page feature copy focus on getting rid of anxiety, stress, and nervousness. The landing page features a customer review count, customer testimonials, user benefits, and the chance to sign up for a free seven-day trial.

Create relevant, optimized landing pages for both platforms

Your ability to match customer intent on each platform impacts your ad rankings, advertising conversions, and ROAS. While Google Ads and Facebook Ads may not count conversions the same way, they both reward relevance and attention to customer intent.

For your ad clicks to turn into conversions, you need to create dedicated, personalized landing pages for every ad. If your team lacks the bandwidth to keep up with this workload, try Instapage.
With Instapage, you get access to the most powerful way to create, personalize, and optimize landing pages at scale. Sign up for the demo here.

Fahad Muhammad

by Fahad Muhammad

Fahad Muhammad is a Content Marketer at Postclick. He writes about post-click landing pages, advertising trends, and personalization. When he’s not busy writing, he can be found glued to an episode of Top Gear.

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