Facebook is expanding its Audience Network to challenge the Google Display Network and to help brands and publishers “show better ads to everyone.” For the first time, people who don’t use or aren’t connected to the social media platform will be able to see ads on third-party websites and apps.
Facebook claims that feedback from users shows that many ads displayed across the web can be “annoying, distracting, or misleading” and that it will now focus on improving ad formats by banishing slow load times and pop-ups in order to make them more relevant for people. It also wants to deliver a better online advertising experience for marketers and publishers.
“Ads are reviewed against our standards and to ensure they are as respectful of people’s experience as possible,” Facebook’s VP of Ads and Business Platform, Andrew Bosworth, said in a blog post. “For example, we don’t permit ads that include sound unless you interact with them and we prohibit deceptive ads and ads for unsafe products and services. We’ve developed technology to determine when someone clicks on an ad on a mobile device by accident, so you don’t get taken to a website or app you didn’t mean to visit.”
Facebook is planning to provide marketers with basic information about a user’s browsing session so that they can deploy targeted ads. It will do this for non-Facebook users as well by making use of data from cookies that are generated when someone is browsing a website. Google and other ad networks use similar methods to target potential customers.
Facebook believes that it is well-positioned to improve its ads offering, as it currently has a core audience of more than one billion people on the network. This means that it has already amassed a wealth of behavioural data that can be put to use effectively by brands and enterprises.
Users on the social networking site can already navigate to ad preferences to edit how ads are displayed and choose whether they want to see ads based on their specific interests. A new addition also allows users to opt out of viewing ads that are not offered by Facebook on websites and apps under the AdChoice icon.