TikTok For Business

Triple-digit conversion lift: Simple creative tips to make your ads work harder


Triple-digit conversion lift: Simple creative tips to make your ads work harder

December 3, 2021

TikTok For Business

Best PracticesSmall Business

Optimizing ad performance for any digital channel or platform can feel like a daunting and overwhelming task. There’s a lot to think about: where do you put your focus? Impressions? Conversions? Both?

Previously, we’ve published a set of data-driven best practices designed around driving impressions.This round of recommendations focuses on creative best practices to entice customers to take that next step and convert. 


Each piece of guidance below has been proven by data to boost conversion. Our team has used a machine learning model to analyze the performance of thousands of ads on our auction platform to uncover a series of best practices for creative to help you achieve the optimal conversion rate. Our model is designed to identify certain creative attributes, such as video duration or closed captioning. A performance ranking is then assigned based on that attribute's likelihood to achieve a high conversion rate in the auction. These data are validated across each region to form global best practices.

Our goal is help and empower all businesses to optimize their creative content in a way that helps them best achieve their desired marketing objectives on TikTok. This collection of best practices has taken into account campaigns of all budget levels, and we have found them to be applicable and effective for campaigns of all sizes.

Universal best practices for driving conversion

Before getting into recommendations for specific industries and verticals, let’s take a look at some universal best practices that apply to ads across the board.

Shoot in high resolution

Even on smaller screens, video quality matters and sends a signal about your brand’s attention to detail. Our data found that videos shot at 720p resolution or higher saw a massive 312% lift in conversion compared to lower resolution videos.

Most modern phone cameras can easily shoot at 720 or higher, but sometimes that quality gets compressed when sending files or using editing software. Before posting, it’s worth taking that extra time to make sure you’re maintaining that high quality in the final product.


Go full-screen for full effect

While letterbox (16:9) format may rule the roost at the box office, on TikTok it’s all about the vertical formats. Most TikTok users engage with the platform in portrait mode, and shooting in 9:16 aspect ratio ensure you will maximize the screen real estate for full impact with your audience.

In our studies, TikTok found that videos shot in 9:16 aspect ratio saw a 91% lift in conversion, compared to videos that did not match the screen resolution and therefore were framed by black bars at the edges of the screen.

Rally your audience to take action

Don’t beat around the bush or try to be too clever. Give your audience the clear and direct action they need to take to convert. Calls to action (CTA's) in text format have shown to provide an astonishing 152% lift in conversion compared to videos that don’t clearly state what their audience should do next.

Being direct pays off for brands in the digital space so don’t leave potential conversions on the table because you were too polite to ask.

Keep it short & sweet

Video ads on TikTok that fell between 21 and 34 seconds in length received a 280% lift in conversion compared to videos that fell short or long of that duration window. Of course it's OK to go shorter or longer when the situation calls for it, but, as in the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, there is something just right about being in the middle.

Industry-specific best practices for driving conversion

Ecommerce: Mix it up with multiple scenes

Forget the long tracking shot—just because it worked for Martin Scorsese and the Copa Cabana doesn’t mean it works on TikTok. Keeping things lively holds interest and drives engagement. We found that TikTok videos that showcased a variety of scenes led to a 38% lift in conversion over videos featuring one person selling a product in a continuous shot. Consider adding b-roll footage or transitions in your TikToks as a way to continuously hook your audience.


Ecommerce: Get them to act

For ecommerce brands, videos using closed captioning or on-screen text that clearly displays an offer or call-to-action saw an 80% lift in conversion compared to videos that didn't use text or CTA.

Ecommerce: Voiceover + offer = winning combo

For ecommerce ads, a human voiceover illustrating the product, combined with a written offer, proved to be a winning combination for driving action. Compared to videos that don't use this combination, these ads saw an 87% lift in conversion. This held true for most of the world, except for Europe and Brazil.

Gaming: More action, more fun, more engagement

For gaming accounts, our data showed five to be the magic number. Video ads with five or more scenes showed an incredible 171% lift in conversion compared to video ads with fewer than five distinct scenes. This was found to be nearly a global trend, with the exception of the Australian region, where this result was not validated.

Gaming: Lead with text

There is power in words, and even on a video-centric platform like TikTok, text can be play a pivotal role in a campaign’s success.


In our analysis, videos that utilized onscreen text in the first 7 seconds saw a 43% lift in conversion compared to videos that waited 7 seconds or longer to show text. In addition to the magical 7 second marker, there was data to suggest a correlation between shorter delay in showing text and higher lift in conversion. We recommend showing text as soon as possible to maximize the benefit on conversion rate. These results were validated globally except for in Brazil, Japan, and North America.

How to use TikTok's best practices to drive conversion

As with all creative decisions on TikTok, be yourself above all else. Authenticity on TikTok is paramount to success, which is why it’s so important to find the right elements and best practices that align with your brand identity.

Similarly, understanding your primary objective will help you prioritize best practices. Advertisers and businesses newer to TikTok or more concentrating on building brand awareness and upper purchase funnel engagement would be better focusing on best practices to drive impressions. Brands more experienced with TikTok or focused on lower-funnel objectives will gain more value out of the conversion-focused best practices above.

Overall, TikTok recommends brands implement all best practices to maximize their return on the campaign and win the combo performance by driving ideal impressions and boosting conversion.

Get started now

You don’t need to wait for your next big campaign to try out our best practices for driving conversions. Many of them can be implemented with only a few taps using a phone and the TikTok app. For more advanced editing features, check out TikTok’s powerful suite of creative solutions.Ready to make a splash? Visit our campaign setup page to get started with a fresh initiative.


If your brand is new or just starting to explore TikTok, get started by setting up a TikTok Ads Manager account today.

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