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How does Facebook Search Placement work?

3 min read

Aimee Byrne, Paid Social Manager

by Aimee Byrne, Paid Social Manager

Core Investment

Similar to how users search within the Amazon platform or on Google search, Facebook search allows users to search for content, brands, programmes, friends etc on their platform. In 2016 there were over 2 billion searches done daily on the platform so the move to utilise Search as an ad placement is potentially a good one for Facebook.

Fast forward to August 2019, we are finally able to see this as a placement option for brands in Ireland.

How does the Search Placement work?

This version of Search ads is similar to the original version launched in 2012 but as the platform has evolved over the years, so has this new version. Here’s what’s possible and what is not:

1. Search ads will only run on Mobile.

2. Much like Newsfeed ads, Facebook Search ads are very transparent and are clearly labelled with a “Sponsored” tag.

3. Brands will not be able to run Search ads without also running news feed ads.

4. The ads will appear either as a static image or in a carousel format and no video ads will be allowed for now.

5. Implementation of this placement is relatively easy when buying as its included in the list of all the available Placements across Facebook & Instagram (e.g. Newsfeed, Stories, Audience Network etc.).

6. Aligns very well with Facebook’s creative best practice – no need for bespoke creative as we can use the same creative we use within the newsfeed static link embeds.

7. Currently we can’t target / exclude specific keywords or search terms, but these search ads will appear when a user searches terms related to the business’s specific offerings. The best way that we as advertisers can ensure that we show up for various keywords or search terms is to ensure that they are included somewhere on our clients Facebook Business page.

For example, if someone is searching for Samsung on Facebook Search, Three ads, as well as Samsung ads will appear for them in the search results because both brands would have content relating to Samsung devices.


Given the volume of searches in 2016 was immense, Facebook have not released new Search figures since, but you can assume the volume has increased given Facebook user base has grown 46% since 2016 globally. This is a good placement worth considering in our social buying strategy so we can maximise the reach.

We will be making the relevant recommendations as part of our social media responses to briefs in the future.

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