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Facebook Ads to Grow in Size - But Shrink in Number

The new ads, left, will be larger and fewer than the old ads, right.
The new ads, left, will be larger and fewer than the old ads, right.Facebook / NBC News screenshot

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Facebook has announced changes to the ever-present sidebar ads on its website: They're getting bigger. But on the other hand, there won't be as many of them.

In a post to the company's business news page Wednesday, Facebook described the new look as "more visually consistent with the ads that appear in News Feed." And comparing the screenshot shown to the way ads look now, that certainly appears to be true.

The new ads, left, will be larger and fewer than the old ads, right.
The new ads, left, will be larger and fewer than the old ads, right.Facebook / NBC News screenshot

Where there were once several small ads, now there is one big one — though whether that's an improvement or not is probably a matter of taste. For what it's worth, Facebook's tests showed "increased engagement" on the big, post-like ads than the old postage-stamp-sized ads.

The changes won't affect the mobile website or app, neither of which displays a sidebar.

The rollout will be gradual, as with most tweaks to Facebook's layout, but advertisers will see the option "later this month" and everyone will be on board "later this year."

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