Now that third-party browser cookies are gradually being phased out and first-party cookies are only used to a limited extent, it is becoming increasingly difficult to track the right data about your customers. The iOS14 and the expected iOS15 update also don’t make it any easier for us. Now Apple users can choose which app they allow to track their actions. In addition, Twitter, Facebook, Google and other parties lose the SKAdNetwork status. It doesn’t seem like a big deal at first, but it has huge implications for ads, like those on Facebook. To limit the damage, Facebook has created the Conversion API. Read on for some more information.
What is the Facebook Conversion API
With all the updates around cookies, tracking, storing and passing on data on the server will become increasingly important. Only in this way you can accurately track your conversions.
The Conversion API is a new way of event tracking. The tool sends the events from your server directly to the Facebook pixel rather than to the browser responsible for sending an event. This ensures that you can process the data as first-party cookies and thus prevent the loss of conversion signals.
It’s not a perfect solution, but the Conversion API does allow you to send events to Facebook and still stay relevant to your target audience.
Why is it necessary to install this?
When you get started with, or already use ads on Facebook, it is useful to set up the Conversion API on your website. The data you collect is shared directly from your own server with that of Facebook. This means you are no longer dependent on Apple’s rules and the margin of error in your reporting will also decrease. For example, you will no longer see a difference in the number of conversions in Facebook or in the data from Google Analytics. In addition, the API also makes it possible to measure offline conversions. This way you know exactly which lead has paid at a cash register on location.
Thanks to the new technology, those who advertise in Facebook can set up better retargeting ads. This is because data is collected from more than 7 days in the past, even from the people who use an adblocker.
How to set up the Facebook Conversion API?
Do you want to get started with the Conversion API? Then I would like to explain how you can set it up for your website.
To get started, you first have to verify your domain in Facebook. You do this through a meta tag verification, where you add a piece of code to your website. This can be done in three different ways:
- By manually adding the meta tag to the head of your website
- Via an HTML file upload
- Via a DNS verification
When this is successful, you need to set up the eight conversion events in the event manager in Facebook. Here you can indicate which events are a priority to track.
These were just some preparations. To install the Conversion API on your website or landing page, there are three ways:
- You are using a partner integration such as WordPress, Magento, WooCommerce or any other
- You use a third-party tool such as PixelYourSite, Segment, LeadsBridge,…
- You let your web designer install it
Would you like to get started yourself? Then follow these steps:
- Go to your Facebook Business Manager
- In the menu at the top left, go to ‘Event management’
- Click on ‘Add Events’ and select ‘Use the Conversion API’
- Click twice on ‘Next’ and then on ‘Set up’
- Facebook now gives you two options. The first option is to use a partner integration. If you work with one of the platforms that are proposed, you can click on it to follow these steps. The other option is to manually install the Conversion API.
- If you choose to install it manually, Facebook will tell you what to do. Click on ‘Next’.
- Select your pixel and press ‘Next’ again
- Generate your Access Token for the Conversion API and copy it to your clipboard. Then click on ‘Next’
- You will receive instructions from Facebook, and you can choose to send them to your web builder or follow them yourself to install it.
Have you gone through all the steps? Then it is always useful to check under ‘Event management’ whether the various events are well received.
What does the future look like?
It will only become more difficult to collect correct data in the upcoming period. After Safari and Firefox, Google has also announced to get rid of third-party cookies in Chrome. Fortunately, this will not be until 2023, but it will of course have the necessary impact. In general, we get more privacy, which is a nice step forward. It will also increase consumer confidence. But on the other hand, it also means that marketers can advertise less specifically. So, you will still see as many ads, but they will be less relevant to you because people no longer know what you are interested in.