In today’s business landscape, advertising is substantially reliant on data. Generally speaking, this data comes from browsers.
New privacy regulations have forced marketers to adapt to cookieless tracking and reshape the way they approach data acquisition and strategizing.
- What is Facebook Conversions API?
- What is the API and Conversion process?
- Facebook Conversion API iOS 14
- Facebook Conversions API vs. Facebook Pixel
- Benefits of Facebook CAPI
- Why use LeadsBridge as a Meta partner
- Integrations available for Facebook Conversions API
- How to connect your data with Facebook Conversions API
- How does LeadsBridge help with Facebook CAPI?
- How to set up Facebook Conversions API through LeadsBridge
- Testing the CAPI integration
- How the cookieless world will impact advertising: A take on our webinar on Facebook CAPI
- Key takeaways
However, if third-party cookies are no longer the cornerstone of online advertising, how do we stop privacy implications from blocking data collection with cookies and Pixels?
Throughout this article, you will discover how Facebook Conversions API can help businesses overcome data collection modifications, as well as the integrations that can be used in conjunction with this.
What is Facebook Conversions API?
Facebook Conversions API (or CAPI), previously known as Facebook Server-Side API, is designed to help businesses deliver personalized advertising experiences to customers and audiences, all whilst maintaining data privacy.
This tool allows you to send web events from their respective servers, directly to Facebook. The entire process is achieved without a reliance on browser-based tools, including cookies.
The intention of Meta Conversion API is to exist on the server-side of your website (as the previous name suggests), sending events to the browser pixel that has been installed.
Facebook cookieless tracking
The removal of third-party cookies is beneficial for the promotion of data privacy. However, this has posed a great challenge to businesses across the globe, who are attempting to curate strategies that effectively target users whilst simultaneously measuring campaign performance.
The conversions API has combatted Facebook cookieless tracking, allowing for the sharing of data directly from your business’ server, as opposed to via a browser. The data within the API is transferred directly into Facebook and handled in a similar way to that of pixel events.
This allows you to monitor the conversions that take place and make adjustments wherever necessary within Ads manager. This is achieved whilst a user’s specific privacy preferences.
Facebook Conversions API and data privacy
With the development of Intelligent Ad Tracking Prevention (ITP) systems, a trend has arisen of browsers phasing out third-party data entirely.
Implace of sharing data with the browser, companies can use meta conversions API to share the data that matters with Facebook through their server. This means that if a customer uses a privacy tool for non-Facebook activity, their actions will be extended to data sent through Conversions API.
So, where does the end-user opt in to get recorded?
The user opt-in is recorded on your website. That consent is then passed to Facebook when uploading conversion activity via Meta Conversions API. If the user opts out, a new event is fired with this information – consequently removing it from the audience.
Additionally, there are major differences between how cookies collect data vs. how the API collects data. In short, what cookie-based data alone has the ability to collect is strictly dependent on end-user browser preferences – particularly for what concerns ad-blocking extensions.
CAPI sends server events instead, bypassing these limitations. This Blueprint training can be used as a resource for more information.
Server-side API Facebook
As previously mentioned, the Server-side API from Facebook is no longer known as such. Instead, it is exclusively referred to as Conversions API.
Conversions API Facebook
Facebook itself encourages advertisers across the board to implement Conversions API in addition to Pixel for optimal full-funnel tracking and reliable data sharing. This way, advertisers can transmit a larger array of data in order to back their advertising efforts. With the implementation of Conversions API, data such as CRM data and lower funnel events can be captured. This is more than Pixel can offer alone. Moreover, companies with high-security needs can use this to decide which data they wish to share.
Implementing Conversions API will require some development resourcing, but a network of Facebook certified partners or your own existing system integrator/marketing platform provider can make the process effortless.
What is the API and Conversion process?
Although this may seem like an overwhelmingly technical process, it can be simplified when broken down into sections.
Here is a quick rundown of how Facebook Conversions API works:
- The customer enters the website.
- The website must have Facebook Pixel. Facebook Pixel documents first-party user data in cookies.
- The server will save user information in the same way that it saves IP addresses, user agents, Google Analytics client_id, and other parameters.
- When the user (with their saved user data) triggers an event, the server will make a request that contains information about the said event and said user data to the Facebook server.
For Meta Conversions API, you will need to set up the following;
- Meta Business Manager (this is a must, as you cannot use Meta Conversions API without it);
- A Facebook Pixel with your website. It’s important to note that it should be correlated with the Business Manager;
- The specialized Facebook App. This is an app for working with Facebook Conversions API, and it’s combined with Business Manager.
What conversions can be tracked with Conversions API?
With all this talk of event tracking, it’s important to note which events are tracked through Facebook CAPI.
These events are as follows;
- Affiliate payments
- Find locations
- Phone calls
- Form submissions
- Email subscriptions
- Subscription changes
CAPI has a unique set of benefits that the browser Pixel does not possess, including a better overview of omnichannel customer journeys. This is done by conquering things that used to be challenging for event tracking, challenges such as;
- Bad network connections
- Long loading times for pages
- Ad blockers
Possibly the best benefit of Facebook Conversions API is that you can control the data that is shared with Facebook servers. This gives you the ability to track offline conversions like in-person purchases and sales made over phone calls.
With Conversions API, you can send offline events’ data directly to Facebook.
What is Conversion Leads Optimization on Facebook?
The Conversion Leads Optimization Facebook delivery option is a new feature for Facebook Lead Ads. It allows you to optimize your ad delivery by displaying your ad to users who can be converted to high-quality leads easily.
While Facebook Lead Ads prioritize the volume of leads, the Conversion Leads Optimization delivery feature prioritizes the quality of your leads. So to display your ads to higher-quality potential leads, Facebook gathers your existing customers’ data and creates audience segments.
LeadsBridge offers an integration for Facebook Conversion Leads Optimization.
Facebook Conversion API iOS 14
Apple implemented its new App Tracking Transparency framework in iOS 14 back in 2020. This implies that app developers must let users know that their data is being collected. They must request permission from users to track how they engage with apps.
Overall, advertising and marketing as we know it is changing drastically, mostly due to the GDPR’s data privacy laws and regulations.
However, if users opt out of tracking, their behavior cannot be tracked again. The iOS 14 changes impact all apps, which is why Facebook encourages marketers to switch to server-side tracking.
The impact of this change includes:
- Inability to track iOS users after they opt out; you cannot use retargeting campaigns for them.
- Events are limited to 8 per website; you cannot use custom events.
- Unverified domains are unable to use events; you cannot optimize your campaigns for outside events.
- Facebook no longer supports the attribution windows of 28-day click-through, 28-day view-through, and 7-day view-through attribution windows. This makes it difficult to analyze campaigns.
- There will be no real-time reporting anymore. Data will experience delays.
How to tackle iOS 14 changes
- Use Facebook CAPI to track conversions, optimize campaigns and create custom audiences. Instead of using the browser pixel, events are sent through the server.
- Verify your domain.
- Use aggregated event measurement tools to choose the eight events available for a website.
Facebook Conversions API GDPR
As data protection has become a major concern for users and businesses alike, advertisers have faced numerous challenges in how they approach operations whilst achieving results and gaining insight.
Although CAPI has presented itself as an alternative to previous tools that have been subject to extensive data regulations, it must remain to abide by general data protection regulations.
The API is independent from the use of third-party cookies, making it obedient to GDPR specifications. Instead of tracking user activity and sending data through a web browser, this tool transfers the data through a server using a unique ID.
Additionally, Facebook conversion API GDPR is maintained by offering an increased level of data control with more nuanced sharing and tracking settings. This is achieved by allowing businesses to choose which data they would like to share with Meta, as opposed to default tracking every action a user takes.
Businesses that use CAPI can better comply with GDPR specifications by appending their insights within Facebook.
Facebook Conversions API vs. Facebook Pixel
Conversions API helps businesses share specific online and offline events between their server and Facebook’s Server. While Facebook Pixel – which has been around for quite a while now – helps businesses track the effectiveness of their product or service. It basically tracks what people do on your website, including the pages they visit, what actions they take on those pages, etc.
Conversions API vs. Facebook Pixel: What are the differences?
The Facebook Pixel and conversions API tools are fundamentally different in functionality, yet they are combined as a unit to improve marketing performance on Facebook. That being said, let’s have a look at the major differences between CAPI and Pixel below:
CAPI makes up for the ad tracking obstacles by managing problems such as lengthy load duration, inadequate network connections, and ad blockers.
Unlike Pixel, conversion API does not show the customer’s complete journey and presents only the end result. However, it helps measure customer actions using the Facebook pixel to gain visibility into your buyer’s entire journey. Facebook CAPI helps you control the data you share and when you share it. In addition, it offers accurate information you can use for ad targeting, measurement, and optimization (if used with Facebook pixel). Overall, it enables you to keep your social media marketing campaigns efficient.
On the other hand, Facebook Pixel gathers important data for creating optimized Facebook ads and audience targeting. It also helps you track your customers’ interaction with your products or specific conversion events across your business page.
Weighing your options to know which is the best for your business? The answer is using the conversions API in addition to Facebook Pixel , since both tools are very consistent and extremely effective if used as a unit.
Benefits of Facebook CAPI
Facebook CAPI is capable of letting you share data directly from your server to Facebook. Sharing data like this allows you achieve the following;
- Accurately measuring actions in multiple ways, allowing you to share events like delayed values and user/lead scores so that you can use them for further optimization with other Facebook tools.
- Improving targeting data accuracy with measurements and optimizations when paired with Pixel.
- Gaining complete control over the data you share and when you share it
This is all possible as server events are linked to your pixel and behave like browser events. This is how they do it:
- They’re used for the same ad optimization, including conversion and value.
- They appear on almost all of the same surfaces. Two of which include Ads Manager and Events Manager.
- They abide by the same controls and restrictions implemented by Facebook, like with the Off-Facebook Activity tool and the Facebook Business Tool Terms.
When using Facebook Conversions API along with another tool from Facebook’s arsenal, you can gain massive insight that would otherwise be impossible to have.
The use of the API to send conversion information goes around the IOS restrictions. When CAPI is purely used to track offline activity with lower-funnel events (e.g., Purchase), iOS 14 restrictions will not be taken into consideration as such activity doesn’t come from any specific OS.
Remember that with the iOS 14 update, it is required for apps in the App Store to ask for specific permission before using customer data. This takes the form of an in-app prompt that details how the data is being used, and gives the user explicit permission to opt out if they want to.
How Facebook CAPI advertising can help to improve your campaigns
The Conversions API has been specifically designed in order to create a direct and reliable connection between your business’ marketing data and Facebook, including the systems that enable advertising targeting and optimization.
This data can include events that occur on your company’s website,in an app or even conversions that take place offline. This information then lends itself to the personalization of advertising campaigns, as well as the optimization of associated actions so that ads are delivered to most appropriate audiences and those who are likely to convert.
CAPI advertising capabilities can afford you the opportunity to track a greater number of conversions, acquiring more insight into the performance of campaigns on Facebook.
Additionally, by combining the capabilities of CAPI and Pixel, you can gain a more well-rounded, comprehensive view of the actions that occur throughout the customer journey. This simplifies the strategizing process, as you have tangible information to support the implementation of specific advertising actions.
Why use LeadsBridge as a Meta partner
Many companies have the option to develop CAPI technology in-house, but with so many operational duties already existing, is that the best solution available?
Undoubtedly, the answer is no. There are several things that companies need to address in order to get the most out of this technology. This includes;
- Having a deep understanding of CAPI
- Quickly developing the necessary integrations and keeping them up to date
- Properly managing complex data whilst avoiding leaks
So, how can companies use this technology without encountering the problems listed above? Simple, they need to use an FMP like LeadsBridge.
LeadsBridge is an FMP-Meta Business Partner, which is a Meta-approved App for API management and maintenance. Therefore, by using our platform for CAPI technology, customers will always have up-to-date and functional integrations (usually, Facebook updates its APIs every two or three months).
Like all data partners, LeadsBridge can troubleshoot technical issues for the Side-Side program along with the length of service. And if your team needs to update the integration and add more data, our Solution Specialist will guide you using our UI or talk to your tech team to understand how we can retrieve more data.
Our tailor-made integrations are built to match your company’s exact requirements, while allowing to decrease the “time-to-market significantly”. Once integrated with LeadsBridge, you will be able to send your data to any other platform (e.g., Facebook, Google, or Business Intelligence (BI) tools).
Integrations available for Facebook Conversions API
In order to get the most out of Facebook CAPI, you’re going to want to integrate it with your favorite CRM. LeadsBridge offers pre-built integrations to help you set up and run campaigns on Facebook and get optimum results. What’s more, you can get tailor-made integrations to meet your exact advertising needs and stay ahead of competition.
Schedule a demo to discover all the possible integrations with Facebook Conversions API through LeadsBridge.
Facebook Conversions API + Salesforce® integration
In order to have a clearer idea of what LeadsBridge can do for you, let’s dive into the features of a specific integration: the Facebook Conversions API and Salesforce® connection is one of our most popular.
Connecting Facebook Conversion API with Salesforce® allows you to send new Salesforce® records to Facebook Conversions as lead events and also create new leads.
Salesforce® is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application for small, medium, and large businesses, which makes it easy for businesses and companies to track and connect with their customers, employees, partners, and products.
Integrating the two tools enables automated lead data sharing in real time. Although Facebook does have data about its users, your Salesforce® CRM contains all your customer’s details – which Facebook does not have. Therefore, you can leverage this information to build better-targeted ads and make more sales.
With the Facebook Conversions API + Salesforce® integration, you can share and sync different types of data – compared to Facebook Pixel – such as CRM data, lower-funnel events, and multi-site conversion paths on a website and offline location.
Learn more about our Salesforce® – Facebook CAPI integration here.
Facebook CAPI + ClickFunnels integration
Another one of our sales-funnels focused bridges is the integration between Facebook CAPI and ClickFunnels.
ClickFunnels is a tool for service-based businesses – especially popular amongst fitness coaches and gyms. It’s a drag-and-drop funnel creator and editor that allows even the least tech-savvy creators to build marketing and lead funnels to fill their pipeline and turn prospects into clients.
This tool lets you create landing pages and sales pages, accept payments, and manage multiple sales funnels with just a few clicks.
By connecting Facebook CAPI with ClickFunnels, you can upload to Facebook the exact segments of leads that you want to track and use them as the target of your campaigns, which will also help you build more accurate audiences.
HubSpot + Facebook Conversions API
The HubSpot and Facebook Conversions API integration is a favored choice for businesses of all sizes.
HubSpot is a cloud-based CRM platform with several marketing features that help companies deliver an outstanding customer experience, grow their team, manage marketing campaigns, build landing pages, and more.
By creating the HubSpot and Facebook CAPI integration, you can share your website data and conversion events with Facebook. This data bridge offers better visibility into customer interactions with your brand, allowing you to optimize your ads better.
Shopify + Facebook Conversions API
A connection that cannot be overlooked is that of our Shopify Facebook CAPI integration.
Shopify, the all-in-one commerce platform, is designed specifically for independent owners in order to facilitate the establishment, running, and growth of their businesses, both online and in-store. This is achieved through one streamlined dashboard.
Shopify allows businesses to sell in a number of locations, including brick-and-mortar stores, on mobile devices and through social media. This tool enables owners to ideate, execute and analyze marketing campaigns from within the dashboard, as well as managing inventory, payments and shipping.
By establishing a Shopify and Facebook CAPI integration, you can track conversions and ascertain which sales are coming directly from your advertising efforts. As well as this, you can re-target users who have previously interacted with your business, and prompt them to re-take actions that they have abandoned.
By initiating a connection between these platforms, you can track orders, visits to specific web pages, if a lead adds an item to their shopping cart or has begun the process of checking out. All of these insights can improve your targeting and offer greater analysis of the traffic to your store.
Join the waiting list for the Shopify Facebook Conversions API integration.
How to connect your data with Facebook Conversions API
It’s easy to see how important CAPI is and will continue to be in the marketing world. But, how to pass conversion data to Facebook API? All-in-all, there are two ways:
With a direct connection, there are pros and cons to weigh.
- Full control over your connection. No middleman and complete customization capabilities.
- A direct connection could mean saving money when it comes to upkeep.
- Requires access to server codebase and in-house developer resources.
- Requires setup and management of customer information parameters.
Using a partner connection means using a platform like LeadsBridge to provide an integration between CAPI and a data destination.
Using a partner like LeadsBridge gives you a much faster setup and a turn-key feel, allowing you to skip all the technical aspects of connecting CAPI, and jumping right to collecting lead data.
Also, you’ll have access to a team of experts that keep up with anything and everything related to CAPI, so you can focus on what’s most important to you: New leads.
One of the only downsides to this approach is that you don’t have full control or customization options. Instead, you have a quick and easy connection made by an intuitive tool, allowing you to focus your efforts on your expertise.
Although a direct connection (at face value) is free, it can cost a decent amount when it comes to maintenance. With LeadsBridge, with your monthly or annual subscription, you will have full access to experts, ready to help you at any time.
How does LeadsBridge help with Facebook CAPI?
LeadsBridge offers easy-to-use and practical integrations to connect all the data points in your marketing technology stack. One of these integrations enables automated data sync for CAPI.
The biggest setback any marketer can face is the need for repetitive, manual, and time-consuming tasks. With simple integration, you can forget about manually importing CSV files every few days, and get the important marketing data instantly.
By automating your Facebook CAPI experience, you’re able to jump on lead data as soon as it comes in, giving a boost to their journey through the funnel, and giving you precious insight throughout the entire process.
So what integration is done within the CRM tool to sync your lead data? If you have access to the website backend Facebook Conversions API is fairly easy to implement! You can choose to integrate either with the CRM or directly with the website’s back end. In both cases, LeadsBridge could help you out.
How to set up Facebook Conversions API through LeadsBridge
Still wondering how to pass conversion data to Facebook API without any of the technical headaches? We have made it simple! Like any integration on LeadsBridge, it only takes a few clicks.
First, log in to your LeadsBridge account. If you haven’t registered yet, you can create your account here.
Once signed in, you’ll be taken to the main dashboard.
To start, you’ll need to create the connection between Facebook Conversions API and your CRM. Simply click “Create new Bridge”.
Find the desired source, for example, your favorite CRM from the drop down menu and select Facebook Conversions API as destination. Then, click “Continue”.
Now, you can name your bridge by clicking on the edit pencil icon. This can help you easily find your bridge later.
Here, you’ll need to connect your accounts by selecting your source- let’s say, Salesforce® – and your destination, Facebook CAPI, and connect your accounts for both tools.
At this point, you have to make sure that all fields of data are mapped correctly between your source and destination apps.
Once everything is matched correctly, click “Save & publish”. Your bridge will be officially completed and you’ll see it added to your bridge dashboard.
Testing the CAPI integration
You can also test your new integration in your LeadsBridge dashboard. If you want, you can choose to test the integration with either a new (made-up) lead or an existing one. For the sake of this article, we’ll use a mock-up. Remember, you can do this while creating the bridge or even after your bridge creation.
After inputting all that information in the fields mapping stage, simply click the “Test now” button. Now head over to your inbox, and see if all the information has been sent. If the integration was set up correctly, you should have an email describing all the information you added in the testing stage.
Just like that, your flawless integration is ready to go live, and you’re ready to receive new leads!
How the cookieless world will impact advertising: A take on our webinar on Facebook CAPI
In April of 2021, we held a webinar with Facebook to talk about how a cookieless world would impact advertising and how cookieless targeting will be possible in the future. We were very excited to be joined by Emily Wilson, who is a product manager at Facebook. She gave us some amazing insight into the cookieless targeting situation on Facebook’s side and even answered some great questions proposed by the audience.
Does the conversions API bypass the CMP (Cookie Management Platform), especially for remarketing in regards to user consent?
Facebook CAPI helps to increase the quality of the conversions you track online or offline by using a server connection. For instance, as a cookie-less solution, it allows you to fetch data directly from your CRM. Yet, it is important to clarify that Facebook CAPI does not bypass governmental legislation about remarketing in regards to user consent management; you still need to gather user consent when storing user information for marketing purposes.
These are just a few of the many incredible questions that we answered during that webinar. By the end of it, it was clear that Facebook was on top of things and working diligently to make cookie-less targeting mainstream, all while dealing with consent management and abiding by data privacy laws.
If you have more questions, contact us by filling out this short form and our team of experts will be happy to assist.
Although the loss of third-party data has posed a major obstacle, businesses are continuously adapting to the change, learning how to operate in a cookieless landscape by looking to first-party to create impactful campaigns.
Having gained a comprehensive view of Facebook Conversions API, it cannot be denied that this tool is of substantial benefit to advertisers the world over, using it to gain heightened insight into the customer’s journey and customize their ad experience to achieve better results.
Most importantly, all of this is achieved whilst maintaining data privacy regulations.