5 ways iOS 14 restrictions impacted your Facebook Ads tracking


Since Apple released iOS 14, consumers are required to explicitly opt-in to share their unique Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA), allowing announcers to deliver personalized ads. In practice, iPhone and tablet users can now decide whether or not to allow third-party sites - like Facebook - to track their data. A win for Apple customers, but a new challenge for businesses that rely on social media advertising.

A study by Flurry Analytics unveiled that only 13% of Apple’s global customers opt-in for data collection during the first three weeks of iOS 14.5 rollout. This new privacy policy directly affects the measurement of Facebook Ad campaigns, since advertisers can no longer properly track user information and collect important insights.

Significant changes

From iOS 14.5+ onwards advertising and driving conversions are still possible, but tracking and personalization are limited. Check out some of the major changes.

1 - Facebook Pixel is no longer enough

As people choose not to have their data tracked, advertisers cannot rely on Pixel anymore for ad measurement and retargeting. Facebook Pixel actions, such as click to download, add to cart, purchase completion, and form submission have fewer numbers reported due to Apple users opting out of tracking.

Pixel reduced tracking capabilities of user behavior also affects Facebook Ad Optimization, once there are less data to work with in ad personalization, which influences the success of campaigns.

2 - Ad retargeting

Device-level retargeting campaigns no longer work for users that don’t share their IDFA anymore. Luckily, Facebook and Google have other variables to identify devices, such as email and phone numbers. However, other advertising platforms are likely to see a reduction in targetable audiences.

In addition, the limitations in understanding customer behavior affect the measurement of ads to better create retargeting campaigns, knowing the audience, their needs, and how to take an effective approach to turn prospects into customers.

3 - Audience sizes are shrinking

Custom audiences that were helpful for retargeting are shrinking. In practice, most iOS 14 users will not be included in retargeting audiences even if their interests match the campaign’s targeted audience.

4 - Ad measurement

Apple’s new policy limits the ability to measure the performance of iOS 14 app install campaigns on Facebook as it relies on Apple’s SKAdNetwork API (Apple-controlled tracking system) for mobile app installs and other conversion events.

Moreover, advertisers are limited to choosing only 8 web conversion events that are important for their business to evaluate. These events need to be prioritized since it’s only possible to receive one event per user. SKAdNetwork API sends back to Facebook Ads Manager the highest priority event that the consumer has completed.

5 - Costs have increased

As audience size is decreasing, the cost to reach the remaining people in each audience has increased. Advertisers are seeing an increase in CPMs and CPAs, as they compete with other businesses for Apple users’ impressions.

Keep your Facebook Ads profitable

Facebook developed a quick response to iOS 14 restrictions. The company suggests advertisers take some easy steps to adjust the ad campaigns to the new reality and move forward. Here are some tips provided by Facebook:

Verify your domain

By verifying your domain, you avoid any future disruption of your website campaigns. Additionally, you’re able to manage the permissions over your links in Facebook on both paid and organic content, preventing misuse and allowing you to give priority to events your site has pushed back to Facebook.

Prioritize your events on Facebook

Configure 8 prioritized events per domain in Facebook Events Manager. Also, since you’re only able to collect data on one event, you should notify Facebook how important each event is.

Implement Facebook’s Conversion API

This is the biggest innovation of Facebook to keep ads profitable while respecting user’s privacy. The Conversions API allows advertisers to send events, like leads and purchases, from the server directly to Facebook Ads Manager.

The new Conversions API moves conversion tracking to server-side rather than relying on browser-based conversion events. The Facebook tool provides a unique ID to a visitor of your page that is stored on a private server. When a user makes a conversion, this event is then sent to Facebook and is attributed to the Ad campaign.

Conversions API is the solution to track Facebook Ad Campaign conversions, whilst respecting users’ privacy. If you want to skip all the coding to integrate Conversions API with your website, use Capibox for easy connection in just a few steps.

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