What is Facebook Pixel?

Facebook Pixel is one of Facebook's most powerful marketing tools—but also one of the least known in the social media marketing world.

This powerful tool can help you get the most out of your Facebook ad budget. It takes just minutes to setup but can save you thousands of dollars a month by giving you better targeting.

In short, Facebook Pixel is a way for Facebook to track how people engage with your website. Then, you can use this data to better target your ads by creating custom audiences.

Pretty neat, right!?

So in this article, we'll show you how to use the tool, discuss if it's right for your brand, and show you how to implement it.

Let's dive in!

First, what is Facebook Pixel?

In short, Facebook Pixel is a piece of code that you can add to your web page that helps you collect data about your customers and better target your ads. You can use it to track conversions and better target your ads.

Technically speaking, the code acts as a cookie on your website. So when someone views your site, Facebook will log that a user has viewed your site and send the data back to Facebook.

Facebook Pixel can even track users cross-platform. So for example, if someone views your site on both their iPhone and iPad over the course of a week-long period, Facebook will keep track of their interest.

Great, but what can I do with that data?

Since Facebook Pixel logging important customer information, you can use Facebook Pixel's tracking data to target your Facebook ads to people that are already interested in your product.

In the end, this improves your Facebook ad ROI and ups your conversion rate. Who doesn't love the sound of that!?

Even if you're not already using Facebook ads, it's still worth having Facebook Pixel on your website. Facebook will start collecting data now so that you'll have an easier time targeting users in the future.

Here's our favorite ways to use Facebook Pixel:

Facebook ad retargeting

You can use the data collected by Facebook Pixel to target ads to people that have already visited your website. This increases your chance of closing the sale and keeps your brand fresh in the mind of potential customers.

Facebook ad targeting with lookalike audiences

You can also use Facebook Pixel's data to create a lookalike audience of people who have similar interests and a similar demographic of people who have visited your site in the past. This can get your products in front of valuable new eyes.

Facebook conversion tracking

Use Facebook Pixel to better understand how people interact with your website after they click on one of your ads. See the pages they go to and if they visit your site on another device.

One great example of this is tracking if someone originally finds your website on a smartphone, and then completes the purchase on their laptop. You can use this data to better optimize your mobile experience, etc.

Better optimize your ad campaigns

Since Facebook Pixel tracks customer behavior on your website, you can use its data to target people that are most likely to spend the most amount of money on your site.

Should my brand use Facebook Pixel?

Yes, yes, and... #YES!

There's no doubt that all brands should add Facebook Pixel to their site. There is absolutely zero downside to using the features, and only more profits and a better Facebook ROI to gain.

Oh, and like discussed earlier—even if you're not currently using Facebook ads—the data you'll collect from Facebook Pixel will be super valuable when you eventually make the jump to Facebook ads.

Plus, if you need any more convincing: Facebook Pixel is 100% free. There are absolutely no downsides to adding it to your website—heck, it won't even increase your site's load time.

Here's how to add Facebook Pixel to your website

Sold on Facebook Pixel? We have some good news: implementing Facebook Pixel is remarkably simple. 

To add Facebook Pixel to your suite, just head over to Facebook Business Manager, load the page you'd like to make a Facebook Pixel for, and follow these steps.

1. Click the hamburger menu on the left-hand side of the screen and click Pixel

Click Pixel in the drop-down menu

2. Click the Create a Pixel button at the center of the screen

 Create a new Facebook Pixel

3. Add Facebook Pixel to your website

Add Facebook Pixel to your website

You'll be presented with two options: Connect a Partner Platform and Manually Install Pixel Code Yourself.

Platforms like Squarespace, Shopify, and Wix are a Facebook Pixel partners. If you use one of these services, select the Connect a Partner Platform option and Facebook will walk you through the setup process.

If you build your site from the ground-up, click the Manually Install Pixel Code button and Facebook will give you the necessary code to install Facebook Pixel on your website.

Copy and paste the Facebook Pixel code in the <head> tag of your website. Note that this code makes no visual changes to your website.

5. Enable Automatic Advanced Matching

Enable Advanced Matching for your Facebook Pixel

After adding code to your site, Facebook will ask if you'd like to enable Automatic Advanced Matching.

This feature will automatically match information people provide to your website (like their email, name, etc) and help Facebook match it with a profile.

We recommend turning this feature on. It allows Facebook to provide more accurate tracking, and you can even choose which information you'd like Facebook to match (see the photo above).

6. Test your Facebook Pixel

Test your Facebook Pixel

Enter your website URL in the text box and click Send Test Traffic. Facebook will test your newly added Pixel and verify that it can communicate with your website.

If all goes well, you'll get a confirmation that Facebook Pixel is now active on your website. If it fails, make sure you added the code to the right part of your website.

And now the fun begins...

Setting up Facebook Pixel actions

Now that you have Facebook Pixel on your website, you need to choose what actions you'd like to track.

This can be people adding products to a cart, subscribing to your newsletter, or starting a free trial.

Doing this is simple: after adding Facebook Pixel to your site, Facebook will automatically drop you in the event creator page.

There are different templates curated for different types of websites at the top of the screen. For example, there's travel, e-commerce, and financial services templates.

Add tracking features to your Facebook Pixel

Select which template best fits your website. Then, at the center of the screen, you can see all of the data that template tracks. Go through the list and look for additional setup instructions for each feature. This requires copying and pasting additional code into your site's <header> tag.

Image via Google

Once you've selected the data you'd like to track, add the Facebook Pixel Helper extension to Google Chrome and load your webpage. The extension's </> icon will turn blue when it finds working Facebook Pixel code on your website.

Then, if all checks out, add the necessary Facebook Pixel notices to your website. In short, this means providing proper notice that your website is using the Facebook Pixel cookie to your website's viewers. Check out Facebook's developer terms for more info.

What now?

Using Facebook Pixel

Now that Facebook Pixel is up-and-running on your website, you can use Facebook Business Manager to create custom audiences and conversions based off of information provided by your Pixel.

To do this, just jump over to the Settings page in your Pixel. Choose whether you want to create a custom audience or conversion, and follow the on-screen instructions.

Make a custom audience from a Facebook Pixel

You can filter audiences based on your website visitor's actions on different parts of your website. For example, you can make an audience that targets people based on whether or not they're subscribed to your newsletter.

Alternatively, creating a custom conversion lets you tweak built-in events to show specialized data. For example, you can track how many products someone has in their cart. Then, you can target your ads to people with a specific number of products in said cart.

Bottom line

In this article, we showed you what Facebook Pixel is and how to use it to better target your ads. We highly recommend that everyone using Facebook Ads embraces the tool—after all, you only have ad revenue to gain.

But now we want to hear from you. Does your brand use Facebook Pixel? What data do you track? Let us know in the comments.

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