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Feel like you’re being followed?
It’s not in your head.
If you’ve ever seen an online ad related to a website you’ve recently visited, it means you’re being served retargeted ads.
Welcome to the the modern age of privacy invasion, where advertisers have the ability to essentially stalk you after leaving their website. And who’s the king of privacy invasion these days?
Facebook, who else?
Facebook’s tracking pixel takes cookies and remarketing to a new level by centering on individual people instead of IP addresses (more on that later).
What does that mean? Sit tight; in this post I’ll cover the basics of the Facebook retargeting pixel; what it is, how it’s used, how it’s different from website cookies, and how it can help you grow your business.
What Is the Facebook Conversion Pixel?
What is the Facebook Pixel?
The Facebook pixel drops a cookie-like code in the web browsers of visitors on your website so you can advertise to them again later (also referred to as remarketing).
Think of it this way – you have your own completely unique identifier for Facebook. Think of it as your own personal ID number. When you visit a website (and are logged into Facebook) the Facebook conversion pixel captures that unique identifier and uses it to connect ads to your Facebook account.
Facebook pixels take care of advertisement remarketing, optimization, and tracking all in one place.
They also give you a much better idea of how effective your Facebook advertising is. With Facebook’s tracking pixel, you know exactly who you’re marketing to and how your ads are performing.
Facebook Pixel vs. Website Cookies
The Facebook pixel is different from other types of cookies in that it tracks people, not devices. With traditional cookies, if a person visited a site on three different devices, Analytics would track that as three separate visits by three separate people. Facebook tracks visits across devices, so that multiple devices can be attributed to one person.
Much more effective and data-driven.
How Business Owners Can Use the Facebook Pixel for Retargeting Ads
Clicked on this in Amazon, and suddenly it’s following me on Facebook.
Want to know where the money is? Facebook remarketing and retargeting. These people have already been to your website, so they’re interested in your product. Why WOULDN’T you retarget ads to them?
You can employ Facebook tracker to create Facebook retargeting campaigns by creating custom audiences with standard events.
The conversion pixel will track movements of anyone who visits your website while they’re logged into Facebook (aka, most people), and it will record:
- Which pages on your website they visit
- Which pages they do not visit
- When they visit those pages
This helps you better use the tracking pixel to target your Facebook ads to very specific groups of people. So, for example, you could create custom audiences and advertise to groups of people who:
- Visited your website in the past 180 days, but haven’t come back to it in the last 30 days
- Visited your website in the last 24 hours
- Visited certain pages on your website (example: Heating Installation)
- Visited a specific page on your site (example: Heating Installation), but not another specific page you wanted them to visit (example: Contact Us)
Based on the action you’re hoping to get out of these visitors, you can define your custom audience by which pages they visited, or by when they visited your website.
See the Facebook Pixel Implementation Guide >>
How Business Owners Can Use Facebook Remarketing to Increase Revenue with Standard and Custom Conversions
The BIGGEST misunderstanding business owners have about Facebook advertising is the objective.
I get more into it in this blog post about types of Facebook ads, but you NEED to understand how Facebook shows ads to people.
If you select the “Traffic” objective, Facebook will show your ads to people most likely to click on your ad. If you select the “Conversions” objective, Facebook will show your ads to the people most likely to convert.
If you’re choosing the wrong objective for your goal, you’re throwing your money out the window.
Standard and Custom Pixel Events
There are two types of events (conversions) you can track on your website: standard and custom.
Standard events are template-based code that track popular conversions, like page views, contact form fill-outs, etc.
All too often business owners have extremely specific conversions they want to track. This can include a complete registration for a webinar, abandoned carts, or landing page visits.
Enter custom conversions, or custom events.
This helps you track when someone completes a specific action as directed by your goals.
Once your Custom Conversion is created, it will be tracked for all of your Facebook ads, whether you optimize the ad for it or not. But beware: as of right now, you’re limited to 20 Custom Conversions per Facebook Ad Account.
Facebook Remarketing: Not for Beginners
Not only do you have to get the code just right, there is a little more that goes into making killer remarketing audiences. If you’re trying to run your own Facebook remarketing campaign with the retargeting pixel, we recommend doing A TON OF RESEARCH, or trusting the pros to handle your Facebook marketing campaigns for you. Contact us today to see how we can help you!
About The Author: Betsy is Blue Corona's in-house Digital Marketing Specialist. When she’s not directing Blue Corona's corporate digital content campaigns she’s urban exploring with her wife, diving into the latest marketing trends, or teaching horseback riding lessons. Twitter: @educatedbets
View more blogs by Betsy McLeod