Conversion Tracking is one of my favorite Facebook advertising tools. It helps bring in more customers and revenue through conversion optimization. And it is also one of the single best ways to show ROI as a result of advertising.
Due to the complexity of this topic, I’m breaking Conversion Tracking into two separate lessons.
Ready? Let’s go!
What You Are Going to Learn Today
Today’s lesson is Conversion Tracking: Introduction. We’re going to focus on the following:
- What Conversion Tracking Is
- How Conversion Tracking Works
- Types of Conversions Tracked
If you are using Facebook ads to drive sign-ups, leads, registrations or sales, it’s an absolute must that you use Conversion Tracking.
What Conversion Tracking Is
You undoubtedly run Facebook ads with the intention of increasing conversions of some sort. Maybe it’s a standard Facebook ad that leads to an offsite landing page that features a product. Or a promoted post that leads to a story about your webinar. Or an ad promoting your Page that leads to a tab that requires an email address.
How are you measuring the success and failure of these ads?
If you aren’t using Conversion Tracking, you’re likely guessing. You look at your number of conversions and assume that any spikes were the result of advertising.
This is a terrible way to measure success!
Conversion Tracking allows Facebook to connect ad clicks or views directly to conversions. No more guessing regarding the success rate of your ads!
This is an important point that needs emphasis. Far too often, advertisers follow the wrong ads metrics. They look at clicks, Click Through Rate (CTR), CPM, CPC and other pretty meaningless stats. The only thing that actually matters is how much it costs you to get your desired action.
And in this case, that desired action is a conversion. So before you may have thought an ad was successful based on its number of clicks, even though none of those clicks led to conversions. Or you may have thought an ad was a failure because of the opposite, even though the few clicks the ad did receive led directly to revenue.
Additionally, Conversion Tracking is run using Facebook’s Optimized CPM bidding. As a result, Facebook can optimize for your desired type of conversion — meaning those who are shown the ad are most likely to convert.
How Conversion Tracking Works
How this works is broken down into two sections: Tracking and Optimization.
Facebook is able to track conversions thanks to an Offsite Pixel. When you set up Conversion Tracking for a specific conversion (we’ll say a webinar registration), Facebook gives you a snippet of code (Offsite Pixel) to place on your website. That code will go on the success page (“Thanks for registering for my webinar!”), alerting Facebook that a conversion was successful.
Facebook knows who clicked on your ad, and they also know whom was shown it. And thanks to your pixel, they also know who converted. Those things are then connected.
By default, Facebook reports conversions that occurred within 24 hours of an ad view or within 28 days of a click. However, you can customize this if you use your ad reporting (more on this in the bonus section!).
Thanks to Conversion Tracking set up by other advertisers, Facebook can also optimize to make sure that your ad is shown to those who are most likely to perform your desired type of conversion.
When you choose Optimized CPM, Facebook optimizes to zero in on an audience within your targeting most likely to perform a desired action. That could be a link click, photo view, video play or general engagement (or any other of a long list of actions). They can do this based on the history Facebook has on users in relation to your content, the content of others and specific types of content (someone who watches lots of videos is more likely to watch your video).
The same concept is at play with Conversion Tracking. When you create an Offsite Pixel, you tell Facebook that you are looking for a specific type of conversion (more on that in a minute!). Facebook then optimizes to focus the display of your ad most to those who have proven to perform that action in the past.
A point that needs to be made: Some people will claim that Conversion Tracking isn’t necessary because you can use their own URL tracking. Don’t listen to these people!
If you use your own tracking links, you can certainly determine that a certain ad led to a conversion. But what about which age group led to a conversion? Or which gender? Or country? Or placement?
These are things that the new ads reports can show you, but only if you’re using Facebook’s Conversion Tracking!
Types of Conversions Tracked
An Offsite Pixel should be created for any conversion you wish to track on your website. So a unique pixel should be created for each unique conversion.
Following are the types of conversion that Facebook will track and optimize for:
- Key Page Views
- Adds to Cart
- Other Website Conversions
It’s important to point out here that a conversion does not need to lead to direct revenue to be a fit for Conversion Tracking. Anything that results in a form submission would do, though Facebook will even track “key page views.”
Following are the types of conversions I’d consider tracking:
- Product Pages: Adds to Cart and Conversions
- Email Registrations
- Contact Forms
- Webinar Registrations
- Look at your ads from the past 30 days and write down which ones could have used Conversion Tracking
- Write down a comprehensive list of all of the specific pages on your website that could benefit from Conversion Tracking