How to Create and Use Facebook Ad Templates
Want to hack your Facebook ad creation? Facebook ad templates are one of the best ways to set up an efficient ad creation system while still producing creative and compelling ads. Get ready to learn more!
Setting up a new ad account can be pretty involved, whether you’re running them for your own business or as a digital marketing side hustle (which also happens to be our favorite side hustle).
But what if you could create a system to automate and streamline ad creation? What if there was a way to work more efficiently so you’re trading in less of your time?
Well… hello, Facebook ad templates. Nice to meet you.
In this post, we’re going to cover what Facebook ad templates are, why you should consider using them, how to make an ad template of your own, as well as some great examples you can *ahem* borrow from.
Now, before we get started, don’t misread this as a call to turn into mindless, creativity-lacking automation. No one wants to scroll down their newsfeed and see a bunch of the same ads over and over again. That’s super lame, and it will lose you, clients.
Creating your own ad templates eliminates that risk. You can tailor each ad to you or your client’s needs, all while saving yourself some valuable time. That’s a win-win!
What are Facebook ad templates?
If you Google “Facebook ad templates” you’re going to be inundated by pitches from web apps like Canva, Ripl, and others with enticing offers for free ad templates.
While these sites have their benefits, none of them offer a comprehensive Facebook ad template library.
What you want is an ad template that keeps the key components of a good Facebook ad in mind, including:
- A clear call-to-action (CTA)
- Engaging your avatar
- Value to your audience
- An eye-catching image
- Compelling copywriting
Most of the templates you’ll find in Canva or Ripl will be great for general content, but not so much for ads. They aren’t even necessarily the right dimensions for Facebook, which will just cause you a huge headache.
However, Canva is still a great resource for creating ads. As long as you know the right dimensions for specific kinds of ads, you can easily create a series of templates to use again and again.
Why you should create your own Facebook ad templates:
- With a very limited (and unusual) 1200px – 628px dimension, templates reduce the time you spend trying to come up with images that fit and look good in your targeted audience’s newsfeed.
- If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Don’t be tempted to reinvent the wheel every time you create a new ad. There’s a reason why major brands stick to designs time and time again — they work.
- Save yourself time. With drag and drop, you can give yourself structures in place to simply fill with each brand’s content and messages with a few clicks.
How to create your own Facebook ad templates
Again, Canva is a great resource for creating Facebook ads and templates, but some of the templates are geared more towards general content and not ads. The biggest issue is using the correct dimensions of your ads. Fortunately, we’re going to explain how to create ad templates in Canva with the correct dimensions for specific kinds of ads.
Before we get started, there are a few important things to pay attention to when designing your ads:
- Character limits in the ad headline
- Description text
- Link descriptions
- No more than 20% text in the image (Facebook is pretty strict about this one)
The below guide is going to explain creating templates that keep Facebook’s rules in mind.
The bread and butter of Facebook advertising is the single-image ad. It should have a relatable image that seamlessly connects to easy-to-understand copywriting. Use vibrant, quality images to help catch the attention of casual scrollers.
Need more tips on creating eye-catching ads? Learn more at 7 Examples of Great Facebook Ads and Why They Work.
To create a single-image ad template follow these steps:
Step 1: Set your dimensions on a custom design to 1200 x 628 px.
Step 2: Go to Elements, drag and drop an image placeholder from the category “grids” onto your design.
Step 3: Title it “Single-Image Ad Template” and save it as a template.
And that’s literally it. You’ll now be able to upload and install your own images and have them cropped to the correct size for you, with no guesswork needed.
Alternatively, if you want a 1:1 ratio square image, you can set your template dimensions to 1,080 x 1,080 px, title it Single-Image Square Ad Template, and you’re good to go. There are successful ads with either ratio.
The above steps are the basics for all other formats in terms of creating an image template.
Single image ad specifications at a glance:
- File type: jpg or png
- Image ratio: 1.91:1 to 4:5
- Resolution: Highest resolution possible; pictures will be resized to dims of 476x248px with a link and 500×300 without
- Headline: 25 characters
- Text: 125 recommended, but you know we love a good long-form copy
- Link description: 30 characters
A single-image ad to “borrow” from:
This 1.91:1 ratio image ad for Dollar Shave Club makes you want to sign up. The image is a simple representation of what you could expect to get if you became one of their “genius members,” and who doesn’t want to feel super smart? The CTA is clear and compelling, and tells you exactly what to do.
If a single image simply won’t tell your story sufficiently, consider using Facebook’s carousel feature, where you can upload as few as 2 to as many as 10 images in a single ad.
Carousel ads are compelling because they not only allow for different media formats in the same ad, but can also individually link to different pages, allowing for more engagement and flexibility in your storytelling.
You wouldn’t need an image template in place for a carousel ad necessarily, as long as you are using a 1:1 ratio image with minimum dimensions of 600 x 600 px.
Carousel ad specifications at a glance:
- 2-10 cards
- Image file type: jpg or png
- Video file type: mp4 or MOV recommended
- Video maximum file size: 4GB
- Video length: up to 240 minutes
- Image maximum file size: 30MB
- Resolution: at least 1080 x 1080px, 600 x 600 minimum
- Ratio: 1:1 recommended
- Text: 125 characters
- Headline: 25 characters
A carousel ad to draw inspiration from:
This is a great example of how to leverage the benefits of the carousel format. The option to have different captions on each carousel card gives you a chance to showcase more than one feature, and tell your story in a more captivating way. This ad also catches the eye with contrasting night and day images. Maybe we should make this location Laptop Empires headquarters?
Side-by-side ad images
What if you want to make a comparison between two images, but want them to share the screen? This can be accomplished by creating a Facebook ad template that has two images, side-by-side.
To create a side-by-side image ad template, follow these steps:
Step 1: Create a custom design with 1200 x 628 px dimensions, like the single-image ad template.
Step 2: Drag and drop an image placeholder onto your design. It will naturally fill up the entire space of your design, so you will need to resize it to fit a second image placeholder.
The example is resized to be about 580px wide so there will be some negative space in between the two images.
Step 3: With the placeholder highlighted, click “Duplicate” and then slide the copy on the other side of the design.
Step 4: Name it “Side-by-side Image Ad Template” and save it as a template. Boom.
A side-by-side image ad we can all relate to:
Not only does this add identify a pain point (doing laundry, ugh) but it does so in a quick, clean and relatable way. It also uses a simple, succinct headline. And that image on the left nearly makes you cringe — the idea of spending your day in a laundromat when someone else could do your laundry for you, is a big thumbs down from us, too. The only thing that could make this ad better is a nice big CTA, especially since they are highlighting using their services from your phone.
Specs for this ad would be the same as for the single-image ad template.
Text on image ads
Even though Facebook threatens to choke your reach if you exceed 20% text to image ratio on your ads, sometimes you just need a few words on your images. If you run into this situation, keep in mind that logo text counts as text, too!
To make a Facebook ad template for text on images, follow these steps:
Step 1: Follow steps 1 and 2 from the Single-Image Ad Template to create a custom design with either the 1200 x 628px or 1080 x 1080px dimensions.
Step 2: Click Text, Add a heading, and choose a place on your template.
As a design side note, studies have shown that the casual observer views in an F shape, so placing your text on the left-hand side is a good default.
Additionally, using all caps on single-word text is good for grabbing attention. But if you are using more complex text, it becomes more difficult to read quickly because your brain recognizes the shapes of words in lowercase faster than uppercase.
There are a variety of ways in which you could add text to an image for an ad, but here are a few very important tips:
- Keep it minimal, below the 20% image to text margin
- Keep it easily legible, a clean font and a contrasting color to the background
- Keep the image simple and eye-catching
A text on image ad that works:
Slack is an awesome communication tool for teams, and this ad explains exactly how Slack can help you keep in touch with your team, no matter where you are. The on-image text compels its audience to click that CTA. The caption offers a tempting solution to a modern business problem. The text pops against the dark background, and is easy to read quickly. It just works.
Not seeing the ad format you’re looking for? Learn more about ad specs in All Facebook Ad Sizes And Specs (Update for 2020).
Best practices that go beyond Facebook ad templates
Keep in mind, the image of an ad is only the beginning. Without a solid copy, it’s just an eye-catching photo. You’ll also need to make sure these other vital ad components are on point:
- Relevance score: Does your audience relate to the content? Does it address a pain point they have and provide a realistic solution? Does your landing page serve the needs of your avatar, and move them further through the funnel, or are you choking your ad performance with a poor relevance score?
- Authoritative Offer: Does your ad inspire confidence in the service or product you’re promoting? Are you employing social proof, or some other method of authority to give your avatar the confidence they need to click on your offer? What about the offer itself? Is it enticing?
- Clear call-to-action: Without this, you’re basically running a PSA. What’s in your offer directs your audience to click the link or make the purchase, rather than just scroll on and maybe come back to you later (if they even remember who you are)?
This might seem like a lot, but we break this and more down into easy-to-digest nuggets in the Facebook Side Hustle Course so you can confidently know you are giving your ad a fighting chance in your audience’s newsfeed.
Final thoughts on Facebook ad templates
Don’t fall for the idea that you either have to create your ad images from scratch every time or use some ineffective template from web app sources. Making your own ad image templates is quick and easy. It’s an efficient way to get what you want for each ad every time.
Set up some drag-and-drop templates to save you time to focus your skills and knowledge on creating compelling copy and captivating CTAs instead of fiddling with image sizes!