As you all [hopefully] know, the conversion pixel is completely being replaced by the Facebook pixel in the first half of 2016.
The Facebook pixel holds the power of the conversion pixel and the custom audience pixel in one holy grail. It’s basically a more effective and efficient way for marketers and advertisers to track, optimize, and remarket.
If you haven’t joined the bandwagon, now is the time to make the necessary switch for a peaceful mind. An added feature of the Facebook pixel is that we can now create custom conversions, whereas we were unable to do that with the conversions pixel, nor the custom audience pixel.
What Are Custom Conversions?
Custom conversions allow us to track and optimize actions on specific web pages, while bypassing the additional step of adding anything to the Facebook pixel code. Rather than adding a unique pixel for every page, with the new Facebook pixel it’s only required to add the single Facebook pixel once, to every converting page of your site.
Custom conversions are perfect for when you’re running a campaign with a website conversions objective, as it allows you to track specific users as they convert on a given web page. This way, you can chose to optimize for conversions, and Facebook will serve your ad to people who are most likely to complete the preferred action on your website. With implementing custom conversions, Facebook has a better ability to determine whether a user who visited your website ended up converting.
This shows amount of conversion traffic that resulted from a custom conversion on the “Purchase” page of a website. The fifth column displays the conversion traffic, which is the number of people who have converted.
How To Create Custom Conversions
The first and foremost step of creating a custom conversion is installing the Facebook pixel on your website. Once that’s complete, sign into Facebook ads manager and click on “Tools”. Select “Custom Conversions” from the drop down and click the “Create Custom Conversions”.
You’ll have the option to “include traffic that meets the following”:
- URL Contains
- URL Equals
Select the most suitable option. For example, you can select a URL that equals http://www.celinemirzaian.com/facebook-advertising-news-subscription-thank-you/. Or you can use a URL that contains “/facebook-advertising-news-subscription-thank-you”.
Basically, any web page that contains the Facebook pixel, so any web page that signifies a conversion. In this case, I would be tracking subscribers to my newsletter. If they hit my “thank you” page, they count as a subscriber, and therefore a conversion.
I would recommend using “URL Contains” in the case where your “thank you” page or “order confirmed” page has a dynamically generated URL. Some ecommerce websites will append a customer ID to the URL on their checkout and order confirmed pages, i.e., celinemirzaianclothing.com/order-confirmed?id=04548567438. In this case, you will want to select “URL contains” “/order-confirmed” because each different customer will have a difference exact URL.
In the example I gave, my URL leads to a “thank you” page, so I would chose the “Complete Registration” category.
After you’re done selecting a Rule and a Category, click “Next” and type in a name for your Custom Conversion. If applicable, you can set a conversion value. Click “Create” and voila! You can continue the same process and create a separate Custom Conversion for every lead magnet on your site.
How To Track Custom Conversions
In order to track Custom Conversions, again we would click the “Tools” drop down and select “Pixels” rather than “Custom Conversions”. After that, click “Create Conversion”, and you’ll be advised to choose a tracking method. You’ll want to “Track Custom Conversions”.
Instead of selecting a conversion to track, Facebook automatically tracks and reports the conversions that result from your ad given that you’ve selected the Facebook pixel for optimization.
How To Optimize Custom Conversions
At the ad set level of your website conversions campaign, select “choose a conversion event” and select any of the custom conversions you created. This automatically tells Facebook that you want to optimize for that specific action.
Branding a business online versus driving traffic and increasing conversions on your website are two separate objectives. Thankfully, Facebook’s ad manager allows us to build campaigns based on specific objectives. If you’re focused on building an online brand, you can choose the “Promote your Page” campaign objective. For the sake of this blog, since we’re focused on the topic of custom conversions, you need to rely on the “Increase conversions on your website” objective. Whether you’re an E-Commerce or a Non-profit organization, this method is helpful in driving traffic to your website.
Let’s say you’re an online clothing store, and you want to effectively promote your new spring collection. In order to raise brand awareness while at the same time driving conversions, you can create a carousel ad with images of three items of clothing, each linking to the appropriate pages on your website. You’ll want to add a call to action in order to encourage people to “buy now” or “shop now”. This is where the Facebook pixel and custom conversions come in handy. Install the Facebook pixel on each converting page of your website so that you can measure how many people clicked through from the carousel ad on Facebook and purchased your product.
Make sure custom conversions are set up so that Facebook can “optimize for conversions”, and serve your ad to the people who are most likely to convert.
The combination of multiple pixels into one is ultimately going to lead marketers to utilize their time effectively and efficiently. We no longer have to add a unique conversion pixel on each individual success page of a website. Instead, we can add a single Facebook pixel to each individual page. With custom conversions, marketers can track and optimize for website conversions without going through the time consuming process of adding anything to the Facebook pixel code. What’s the added benefit? Facebook automatically tracks and optimizes custom conversions. If you’re running multiple website conversion campaigns, now is the time to implement custom conversions.
About the Author: Celine Mirzaian is a paid social advertiser at Catalyst. Her keen interest in social media advertising combined with her passion for writing motivates her to seek what’s up and coming in the paid social scene, and translate it into words to share with the rest of her fellow marketers. Check out her LinkedIn for more about Celine.