Many Nigerian users have had issues making payments for Facebook and Instagram ads. This guide is meant to show you the different ways in which the payments can be resolved. Please note that payment issues are varied and a solution that works for some accounts may not necessarily work for yours. I will try to explain in great detail what the problems are and how to solve them.
Prerequisites: Please make sure that your Facebook Page is already connected to your Instagram Page. This way, both accounts are seen as a unit, they are seen as a business. If you do not know how to do this, read this other post on how to connect your pages correctly. Now, onward to the solutions.
Old Versus New Advertisers
On a broad note, we can classify the payment problems into two categories namely, payment issues affecting old time advertisers and payment issues affecting new advertisers. It is instructive to read through all the available solutions to understand how to solve yours. If you are in a hurry, skip to the steps down below.
If you have been advertising on Facebook say prior to 2015, when the USD-NGN exchange rate was still somewhere around N160 to a dollar, then advertising on Facebook would have been a breeze. GT Bank Naira MasterCard would work for your Facebook payments without a hitch. Other bank cards still worked, but you had the most success with a GT Naira MasterCard. For old advertisers, your Ad Account was automatically denominated in USD.
Somewhere around late 2015, when the Nigeria economy took a nosedive and the exchange rate ballooned out of normal rates, many Nigerian banks disabled completely the international payments capability of their issued cards. GT Bank reduced the monthly spending limit of the GT Naira MasterCard to $100.
Somewhere down the line, the GT Naira MasterCard also stopped working for payments on Facebook. I was in this category and I desperately needed a solution too. So what to do?
Now the workaround that currently works for me is PayPal. Facebook introduced PayPal as a payment method and I decided to try it. It worked.
Making payments for Facebook and Instagram ads
So if you are an old advertiser and you are having problems making payments with your Nigerian bank cards, you can try the PayPal work around.
- Go to PayPal. (opens in a new tab)
- Signup on PayPal if you do not have an account with them, or Login to PayPal if you already do.
- Add your card details to PayPal. (Optional: There might be a need to verify your card on PayPal. What this means is that PayPal will charge your card for about $1.50, a verification code will be sent to your alert email address. You copy that code and paste into the verification box to verify your card. PayPal will return the $1.50 charge to your account)
- If, and only if, PayPal accepts your card, then you can try the PayPal payment method on Facebook. This is what currently works for me.
- Good Luck.
If you came into the world of Facebook/Instagram advertising sometime mid 2017, then all Ad Accounts from then on were automatically denominated in Naira. Facebook integrated with a payments processor called PayU, a South African payments company.
So, for new advertiser, you would see an option to make payments using PayU. With PayU payments, you can deposit funds into your Facebook Ad Account.
So why doesn’t it still work for some people? Here’s a possible reason.
From the screenshot above, you would see that there are two different payment methods on the payment page.
- First line: International payments – Uses the international payment methods, its a post-paid method. More explanations on this below.
- Second line: PayU: Local payments – Accepts local Naira denominated cards. It’s a prepaid method.
First Line: International payments are basically postpaid payments. This means you are actually charged at a later date. If the charge is successful, say $30, your payment threshold will be raised. If your ad is still running, your next payment might be $100, if this is successful, the threshold is raised again.
When you use your Nigerian cards on the first line, because this is an international payment, and your bank probably still has some restrictions in place, it might not succeed, if your card successful goes through, your ads will run for about 2 minutes and stop. Basically because the limit set by your bank has been reached. Most times, your account is also not debited for the funds. This method would generally NOT work for Naira denominated local cards.
Second Line: The PayU option is better for Nigerian cards as it is a prepaid option and more like a local transaction. Using PayU will take you through the payment process and will likely require an OTP (one time password) either using your hardware token or an OTP sent to your registered mobile number.
What If i have tried all of this and it still didn’t work? What if i want to switch from Dollar payments to Naira Payments?
Again, we would look at this through the different lenses of Old and New advertisers. For some accounts, the payment issues might need to be checked out on an individual basis.
For old advertisers who don’t want to use the PayPal method or who were unsuccessful with it, or people who might want to switch their ad accounts to a Naira denominated account, there is a way to this, but you must first understand the implications.
- By default, all Facebook Pages are automatically provided with an Ad Account. This Ad Account, as explained above, is either denominated in Naira or denominated in USD.
- To switch your payments from one currency to another means that you will need to create a new Ad Account. (DO NOT DELETE THE PREVIOUS AD ACCOUNT, you should link all created Ad accounts to your business manager account (see below on how to do that). You cannot switch the currency of an existing Ad Account.
To Create a new Ad Account you would have to go into the Facebook Business Manager and sign up. The Business Manager is a powerful application that allows businesses manage multiple ad accounts, lets you assign permissions to many people working together etc.
Again, before you do this, i would advise that you should have already connected your Facebook Page to your Instagram business profile. If you have done this, go ahead and create a business manager account, follow the prompts, and create a new Ad Account
- Please note that you are not creating a new creating a new Facebook account and please make sure you are logged into your Personal Facebook Account.
- Go to Facebook Business Manager.
- Create a new account.
- Select the business you would like to connect to your Business manager and click create account.
- Click the Add Ad Account button.
6. Choose the Create a new ad account box as indicated below.
7. Select the Currency: NGN
After creating this new Ad Account denominated in Naira, making payments for Facebook and Instagram ads should be an breeze with your Nigerian card using the second Line, PayU payment method. If after all of this you still are unable to make payments or you have a different problem, then please leave some comments explaining the problems you are having and we could look into it.
Finally, many thanks to Sherry from Facebook, who helped with deep insights into the problems and possible solutions.