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How and Why to Use the Facebook Pixel

Do you wonder what adverts are most successful, how people consume your content and how to deliver relevant ads to your customers? Reading this blog will help you setting up your Facebook Pixel (without having to rely on developers) and thus finding an answer to these questions.

6 min read

How and why to Use the Facebook Pixel

Do you wonder what adverts are most successful, how people consume your content and how to deliver relevant ads to your customers? Reading this blog will help you setting up your Facebook Pixel (without having to rely on developers) and thus finding an answer to these questions.

What is the Facebook Pixel 

The Facebook Pixel is basically a piece of code for your website that lets you measure, optimise and build audiences for your advertising campaigns. The Facebook Pixel is used to drop a cookie that will track visitors on your website so you can reach out to them later, also known as retargeting. Once you advertise to people that have been on your website, you can also use the Facebook Pixel to track their behaviour when they’re back on your website. This in turn, helps you to find out what advertisements are most effective.

How does it work

Imagine someone clicks on your link ad, ends up on your website and buys one of your products. Then the Facebook Pixel is triggered and reports what just happened. Thanks to the Facebook Pixel you’ll know when a customer took an action after seeing your Facebook advertisement. This way, you’ll also be able to reach this particular customer again by using a Custom Audience. It goes without saying that once more and more conversions happen on your website, Facebook will automatically get better at delivering your adverts to people who are more likely to take action. This is known as conversion optimisation, something that we are quite good at using smart algorithms .

Cross-device conversions 

Luckily, the Facebook Pixel also measures cross-device conversions. Imagine your customer sees an ad for a product on the mobile phone while in line at a bank. Will your customer immediately make a purchase on the phone? Most probably not. But maybe your customer goes back to the office later that day and buys the products on the computer. Such cross-device conversions are becoming increasingly common as people move between their phones, tablets and desktop computers to interact with businesses. Thanks to the Facebook Pixel, you can keep track on the audience even when they are using different devices such as desktop computers and mobile phones. For example, you can track an audience that clicked on an ad on their iPhone but then later converted on desktop – and the other way round.

How to create a Facebook Pixel 

You can create and implement the Facebook Pixel from the Ads Manager:

  • Just go to the Pixel section
  • Click ‘Create a Pixel’
  • Enter a name for your Pixel
  • Click ‘Install Pixel Now’
  • Copy the base code of the Pixel and paste it between the tags on each web page, or in your website template to install it on your entire website
  • If you want to keep track of different kinds of actions on specific pages, add ‘events’ to that specific page. The event code lets you track those actions and leverage them in advertising

Keep in mind that there is only one Facebook Pixel per account but you can add several events to the Pixel on different kinds of pages. Make use of the Pixel Helper, a tool that helps you validate your Facebook Pixel. With this tool you can verify if your Pixel works properly, troubleshoot common problems and learn how to improve performance.

What's the difference between the results of the Facebook Pixel and Google Analytics? 

You probably already noticed that the conversion numbers reported from Facebook don’t match the conversions reported by Google Analytics. It’s not a matter of which data is accurate or of who is right or wrong. It’s a matter of being aware of how different tracking methods are being used. We’ve listed the most common reasons why your Facebook and Google Analytics data don’t match up in our previous blog.

Tips to help you get started 

1 Get the full picture

If you put the entire Pixel base code on every page of your website, you won’t miss any action taken on your website.

2 Track the events that really matter

Place *standard events on the pages that matter to your business. It’s super handy if you track your customer’s journey from viewing product pages all the way up to a purchase. This way, you can measure and optimise your adverts for the conversions that mean the most to your business. You can also implement custom conversions for events specific to your business.

  • Standard event code is easy to place on your website
  • If you can’t edit your website’s code, use custom conversions to define which URLs represent conversions for your business
  • You can place an event code on buttons if you have a dynamic website

*STANDARD EVENTS AND HOW TO USE THEM

Standard events within the Facebook pixel code allow you track & optimise for conversions, and build audiences. You simply need to copy the code for the type of event you want and use it to modify the Facebook pixel code on the relevant page. Here is an overview on standard events and their website actions:

Note: For the purchase event, you may change the value and currency of the conversion to better reflect your sale.

3 Access the pixel through your e-commerce platform

Keep checking your Facebook Pixel on your website using the Facebook Pixel Helper as an extension in Chrome. Then you can easily check the Pixel ID and the events that are being tracked on the page(s).  If your website is powered by an e-commerce platform such as BigCommerce, Magento or Shopify, Facebook makes it easy to install the Facebook Pixel, create a product catalog and run dynamic adverts.

4 Don’t forget about mobile

Do you have a separate mobile website? If yes, you should place the Pixel on there too. We can track conversion data across devices and let you know when people view your adverts on one device but convert on another.

What's the added value for my campaigns? 

The Facebook Pixel will make advertising on Facebook much more effective. Not only will you know exactly who you’re advertising to, you will also get a better understanding of how your campaigns are performing. With the Facebook Pixel you basically can:

  • Measure cross-device conversions: see how your customers are moving between devices before they convert
  • Ensure your ads are being seen by people most likely to take the action you want them to take, like purchase or fill out a form by using custom audiences
  • Automatically build audiences for website visitors to retarget with website custom audiences
  • Create lookalike audiences based on your website visitors or customers so you can find more people who are similar to your best customers
  • Run and better retarget people that have visited on your website

All in all, with the Facebook Pixel you can make your advertisements much more effective, leading to a better return on your advertising money.

Conclusion

Having read this blog, the Facebook Pixel doesn’t seem so terrifying as it did before, right? In fact, making use of the Facebook Pixel should give you more advantages and pleasure than disadvantages and anxiety. Use this blog in moments of confusion and despair. We’re happy to help you and make your life easier.

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Sanne Kruis

The Marketing Manager of The Next Ad. Passionate about Social (Advertising), volleyball player and loves to socialise. Nice to meet you! 

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