What is Facebook Ad Relevance & Why it Matters for Your Business

3 min read
September 15, 2015

What is Facebook Ad Relevance & Why it Matters for Your Business
How many times have you looked at your Facebook ad targeting and thought "I just want to get my ad out to as many people as I can, the ads are cheap"? Great idea, right? WRONG!

Last week, I had the pleasure of sitting in on Larry Kim's presentation on 10 Social Media Hacks of All Time, and one of his top focuses was on the Facebook Ad Relevance score and how it can save you money by presenting your best message to your most relevant audience.

You can read more about his presentation by checking out his slides below:


What is Facebook Ad Relevance?

Similar to Google AdWords' Quality Score, Ad Relevance is a metric defined by Facebook that defines how much your audience resonates with your campaign. The score is based on how much positive or negative feedback Facebook anticipates your ad receiving after the first 500 impressions.

Positive feedback is measured by estimated positive actions, such as liking, sharing, or commenting on your post, or visiting your website.

Negative feedback is measured by estimated negative actions, such as hiding your ad, or selecting an indication to not receive ads from you anymore.

Ad Relevance focuses on how relevant the following are to your target audience:

  • Image
  • Messaging
  • Targeting
  • Recency

How Can you Optimize for Ad Relevance?

The best way you can optimize for a strong relevance score is to target logically and test frequently.


Look at your content, and your personas. Who do you want to have viewing your content? If you have detailed persona research, you should be able to produce an audience on Facebook that matches those target demographics.

Testing Pro-Tip: Create a similar but slightly different demographic (ie. women who love shopping that are 45-54 vs. women who love shopping who are 35-44) to test how your specific persona resonates with the ad.


Try to come up with at least 3-5 different images to test with your ad. Some possible options could be:

  • One person related to the ad
  • Several people related to the ad
  • Objects related to the ad
  • Any of the above with accent text

By trying out several different images, Facebook will select which one resonates best with the audience and reduce impressions for images that do not perform as well. This results in lower costs for your company!


Reread your ad copy. Send it to your grandmother or someone who has no idea what you do. Ask them if they understand what you're trying to promote or sell. If they don't, get back to the whiteboard and jot out some more ideas. Rinse and repeat until you have ad copy that makes sense. Even if your audience should understand your industry jargon, always err on the side of clarity.


If you find that your ad is not generating similar metrics to how it performed 2 weeks ago, there is an opportunity for recency. Ad messages can often become too saturated in an audience, especially those that are smaller in size. Avoid this by having new ads ready to go to refresh every few days.

Get Started with Facebook Relevance Scores

To find your relevance score, navigate to your ads manager, and click on your ad account. Click into your most recent campaign, ad set, and finally ads, to see your relevance score in the far right side. An ad with a score of 10 is a high performing ad, while an ad with a score of 1 could benefit from many optimizations to generate a higher relevance.

For more ideas about leveraging Facebook for you company, see our post "Getting Results from Facebook Ads: How we Boosted Traffic 300% and Social Engagement 276%."

Image by Joe The Goat Farmer via Flickr, licensed under CC BY 2.0.