How Much Do You Need to Spend in Facebook Ads Before Making Your First Sale

When starting out selling via Facebook Ads, the inevitable question is “How much will it cost me to get a sale?”.

Each Facebook ad goes through a ‘learning’ period or phase, which you can read more about on their official site here. According to Facebook’s official website “During the learning phase, the delivery system is exploring the best way to deliver your ad set – so performance is less stable and cost-per-action (CPA) is usually worse.”

This often means you are likely to spend more per sale at the start of a campaign than you will once the campaign gets going. This period of time can be really stressful on a new retailer running their first campaign and watching Facebook’s system burn through their budget without any results.

To understand this a little better Facebook Ads expert, Joe Youngblood, took to Twitter to poll his colleagues about how much it costs in Facebook Ads prior to getting your first sale.

Here are the results:

  • $1-$25 – 14.8%
  • $26-$50 – 18.5%
  • $51-$100 – 22.2%
  • $100+ – 44.4%

In a follow up response he clarified this was just a general number, nothing really specific.

While over $100 is the most likely there are times when your first sale occurs at a lower cost. There are all kinds of factors that play into how much the first sale will cost such as the product being sold, the audience targeted, the ad copy, the image or video ad itself, and the landing page.

Most Facebook Ads experts encourage their clients to set aside a minimum of $500 to $1,000 per month in advertising budget for ads on Facebook and Instagram. That cost is only the advertising budget and doesn’t include things like ad copy, graphics, and the daily management to ensure your ads perform their best.

We recommend having at least two separate budgets, one for spending on Facebook or Instagram and one for the management. You may also further divide those into three separate budgets for ad spend, management, and the third for new creative & copy to test. Some agencies only provide it one way or place everything under a flat rate retainer fee, others break the costs down for you.

At only 27 responses and without various controls, Joe’s survey isn’t exactly statistically sound; however, it does provide a small peek into what a new advertiser can expect from those who proclaim to be Ecommerce experts on Twitter.