Facebook & Instagram ad specifications & best practices

By 3 December 2021 December 9th, 2021 Advertising

Ad formats are an important factor when it comes to maximising your results. Adapting your creative content to all the different ad formats can seem like a lot of work and using one format for every ad type may be tempting. However, having the correct ad specifications for every channel and ad types allows you to maximize results. In order to make the task less time consuming, we decided to write a guide going over each channel and their ad types along with their specifications.

Single Image Ads 

Single image ads are ads that appear in the Instagram or the Facebook news feed and are composed of a single image. Advertisers can use this ad format to show an image of a product, service or brand. Single image ads have the same format as carousel ads so you can use the content for both ad types. More about carousel ads further down. 

Design Recommendations

  • Media type: image
  • Resolution (Feed): 1080 x 1080 px
  • Resolution (Landscape): 1200 x 630 px
  • Image format: .jpg or .png

Technical Requirements

  • Maximum File Size: 30MB
  • Minimum Width: 600 pixels
  • Minimum Height: 600 pixels
  • Aspect Ratio Tolerance: 3%

Best practices

  • Show off your product, service or brand
  • Use high-resolution images
  • Focus on your key message
  • Be relevant to your audience
  • Try to stand out

Video Ads

Video ads enable advertisers to have videos appear on users’ Instagram or Facebook feeds. Being more dynamic than images, videos make it easier to grab a user’s attention and are perfect for showing how a product or service works. Another advantage of video as a medium is that it gives brands the ability to tell a story and create a more meaningful connection to their audience. Finally, video ads also let marketers build audience lists of engaged viewers (ie people who saw most of the video). These audiences have already shown engagement with the brand and can then be retargeted with lower funnel ads.

Design Recommendations

  • Media type: video
  • Resolution (feed): 1080 x 1080 px
  • Resolution (landscape): 1280 x 720 px
  • Duration: up to 241 minutes
  • Recommended: 10 to 15 seconds

Technical Recommendations

  • Maximum file size: 4GB
  • Frame rate: 30fps max
  • File type: .mp4 container
  • Video: H.264 video compression, high profile preferred, square pixels, fixed frame rate, progressive scan
  • Audio: Stereo AAC audio compression, 128kbps + preferred

Best practices

  • Be fast-paced and grab attention quickly
  • Deliver a single message
  • Be captivating and stand out

Carousel Ads 

The Carousel ad format also appears in the feed and showcases up to 10 images or videos within a single ad, each with its own link. Users are able to swipe through all the images/videos and read their individual descriptions. These ads are the perfect way to highlight individual products or services however they offer many other creative opportunities. For example, carousel ads can highlight all the aspects of a particular product, explain a process, tell a story, or even create a split panoramic. It’s even possible to create a carousel with story ad formats.

Design Recommendations

  • Image File Type: JPG or PNG
  • Video File Type: MP4, MOV or GIF
  • Ratio: 1:1
  • Resolution: At least 1080 x 1080 pixels
  • Story resolution: check the story ad specifications down below

Technical Requirements

  • Number of Carousel Cards: 2 to 10
  • Image Maximum File Size: 30MB
  • Video Maximum File Size: 4GB
  • Video Duarion: 10 – 15 seconds

Best Practices

  • Tell your story with all the available carousel components to really grab attention.
  • Use images/videos that are cohesive and engaging. Be creative!
  • Pair your slides with dedicated landing pages with a variety of links
  • Use product imagery to target people who have visited your site
  • Use lifestyle imagery to target prospective costumers

Collection Ads

A collection ad can appear both in the Facebook news feed or on Instagram. These ads include a cover image or video followed by 3 product images. Something else to consider is that these ads can be generated through a product feed. Product feeds, referred to as catalogs in Facebook, serve to hold information about the different products you want to advertise. You will need at least 4 products in your catalog in order to use collection ads.

Design Recommendations

  • Cover image file type: JPG and PNG 
  • Cover video file type: MP4, MOV or GIF
  • Ratio: 1:1
  • Resolution: At least 1080 x 1080 pixels

Technical Requirements

  • Instant Experience: Required
  • Image Maximum File Size: 30MB
  • Video Maximum File Size: 4GB

Best Practices

  • Include a cover image/video that captures attention
  • Highlight a variety of products
  • Allow Facebook to dynamically select which products are shown
  • Use a large product set of more than 50 products.

Story ads and reels 

Stories have become an integral part of how users see content on Instagram. Brands now have the ability to place ads in between stories and Instagram reels. This makes it a great way to communicate a message quickly to a highly engaged audience. 

Creating Stories and Stories ads is a great way for businesses to engage people:

Design Recommendations

  • Image file type: JPG and PNG 
  • Video file type: MP4, MOV or GIF
  • Ratio: 9:16
  • Resolution: 1080×1920
  • Note: leave 250 px on top and bottom free of text. This way your profile logo and call-to-action buttons are not covered.

Technical Requirements

  • Video duration: 10 – 15 seconds
  • Image Maximum File Size: 30MB
  • Video Maximum File Size: 4GB

Best Practices

  • Keep attention with speed (be fast-paced)
  • Enhance with motion. Ads that use motion perform better. Consider adding motion to static images.
  • Mix and match video and static. Try using mixed medium assets, such as static images and motion videos, in your stories.
  • Use multiple scenes. Ads that have short, concise scenes perform better than long slow scenes. Use fast-paced narratives that are quick to get to the point and easier for viewers to consume.

Do you want to start advertising on Facebook & Instagram or want to know more about what these channels can do for your business? Or do you have other questions about all the creative ad possibilities? Feel free to contact us! We would love to help you out and help you further to strategize for the best approach for your business.



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