Facebook Removes the <20% Text Limit on Ad Images


Facebook Advertising guidelines had become less strict over the years, and this week marked the total abandonment of the 20% text limit.

It’s been confirmed via a few sources the long-standing rule for Facebook Advertising images being no more than 20% text has been sunset. Media buyers started receiving direct communication from Facebook this week regarding the change:


Facebook Removes the 20% Text Limit on Ad Images

While it still gives advice on how to reduce the text ratios in ad images, it now falls short of saying stay at 20%. Instead, it now cautions the 20% metric as a best practice.

The “20%” Facebook Advertising Rule Before

The purpose of the rule was originally to reduce noise on Facebook news. Especially before the multiple ad units and media options out there now, the Feed was mostly text and images. Adding even more text had the potential to make for a more overwhelming and messy experience.

However, over time, the platform evolved. Text in an image was no longer the distraction it might have been as Facebook continued to launch new types of ads that were much more eye-catching.

There was also the suspicion that the text of an image showed very clearly that it was an advertisement. Before users could easily create many photo experiences with their phone to include text, borders, emojis, etc., users posted simple images. The text would be highlighted as an anomaly, which had the potential to cause a user to immediately realize it was an ad and scroll through it.

While ads with an image of more than 20% text tended to be rejected, years ago they smoothed it out to allow it to run on a “limited” basis.

This was typically noticeable at impression levels between textless and low-text ad images, and ads received a ranking system to warn advertisers in 2016.

20% text overlay tool

A major point of frustration was also simply knowing if he had committed a violation. A verdict was not issued on the proportion of text ahead of time – an advertiser would simply realize they were breaking the law and the ad would not run.

Facebook finally released the Text Overlay Tool, allowing advertisers to upload the images they wanted to run. The tool would then verify each of them and give advertisers immediate feedback on the status of the text.

Some exceptions prior to the 20% rule

There were cases where ad copy did not count towards that 20% threshold.

These included:

– Infographics
– A product image with a text label.
– Event posters
– Legal disclaimer
– Screenshots for things like apps and software
– Cartoons or comics

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Facebook Advertising has seen rapid growth over the years, ranking above Google ads and traditional web advertising. Currently,  there are more than two billion active Facebook accounts around the world. Thus making a company’s odds of reaching and connecting with its clients’ ideal audience quite high.

Although you may be thinking along the same lines as many other B2B businesses – that Facebook isn’t worth spending money on to reach your target clients – your mindset needs to change if you want to jump on board one of the most effective digital marketing platforms in existence.

In fact,  did you know that 80% of all internet users have some kind of presence on Facebook? Through spending as little as 1 a day, you will be able to reach better those responsible for making buying decisions in a business, without needing to go for the hard sell. Have a think about it!

While we can focus on creating a Facebook ads strategy for your business that will deliver more engagement, more leads and better sales.

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