First of all, let’s quickly cover what a Facebook Pixel is and what it can do for your business.
Simply put, the Pixel allows you to track whoever visits your site and also what they do when they’re there. But the power comes when we learn how to use this information to scale through various digital marketing strategies.
Level 1 – Retargeting
If we had to choose the most impactful use of the Pixel it has got to be it’s capabilities for retargeting to your site visitors.
So let’s say you’re an Ecommerce store, the most basic form of retargeting for you would be to recover abandoned carts. 50-80% of all Ecom customers abandon their carts without completing payment, and you can capitalize on these people. Think of them as warm leads, they already know your brand and have shown interest in your products. All you are doing through retargeting is nudging them over the finish line to purchase.
*If you need help installing the Facebook Pixel click here
Once the Pixel is installed, head over to your Facebook Ad Account and select the audiences tab from the drop down menu.
Once their select create custom audience then website traffic. Here you can select who you want to retarget to, so let’s select Add To Cart.
Next you’ll need to do choose the time frame for how far back you want to retarget to. As a general rule, 30 days is a good starting place for low ticket Ecom. However, if you are selling a higher ticket item you should think about lengthening this time out.
Also for higher ticket sellers you can segment out your audience to 0-30, 30-60 & 60-90 days. Then at each step of the funnel you would change your messaging slightly. For example in the first 30 days you may want to stay subtle in terms of straight selling to your potential customer. But if they are at 90 days and still haven’t purchased you could incentivise them with a big discount code.
You can get extremely creative when it comes to creating retargeting audiences, we just use cart abandonment as an example. You could retarget users by the top 25% time spent on site, you could target people who have viewed more than 5 pages etc.
Check out our Custom Audiences guide to check out our favourite audiences to create.
Level 2 – Lookalike Audiences
Back in 2014 Facebook launched something called lookalike audiences. You can use these audiences to essentially clone your existing user base to find similar people to market to.
*For the purpose of saving time we’ll call Lookalike Audiences (LLA) for short.
If you’re looking to scale your business rapidly through Facebook ads then LLA’s are a must for you. There is so much you can do with LLA’s, way too much to cover in this post. So if you want a more in depth look at what they can do for you check out our full guide.
To keep it simple, let’s talk about the most commonly used LLA, and that is a Purchase LLA. Once your Pixel has been installed and you have received a good amount of sales through your site, you are ready to go ahead and create a custom audience.
You can test multiple different audiences but for now let’s make a custom audience of users who have purchased in the last 60 days.
Once the audience has been created you can then create a LLA of that custom audience.
From here you need to select the audience size which is displayed as a percentage value. The closer to 1% you get, technically the closer to your actual customers it will be. However, in practice it isn’t as linear as this. That’s why we suggest you test your LLA’s from 1% all the way to 10% if your budget allows for it. If not you could group multiple percentages into one audience e.g. 0-3%, 3-6%, 6-9%.
Run these audiences in separate ad sets and see if any yield good results. If after 1 day you aren’t seeing results, I wouldn’t make the decision to kill off the audience just yet. Simply pause the audience and restart early the next day. Then, after 3 days if you still have no luck then go ahead and kill it off.
Level 3 – Website Conversion Campaigns & Custom Events
So we’ve covered how to use the pixel for creating LLA’s and Custom Audiences for your Facebook ads. Now let’s talk about using the pixel to feed the algorithm with that tasty data and get you some real results ?
Firstly let’s cover Website Conversion Campaigns, why they are so powerful and how to set them up.
Once your pixel is installed on site you are telling Facebook what action an individual user has taken. To make this easier to follow let’s make up 3 random people – we’ll call them user 1, 2 & 3
Thankfully because Facebook is always tracking these users, it knows the actions they take on other people’s sites too. Person 1 might add to cart often, person 2 may purchase often, and person 3 might just browse but doesn’t normally make purchases straight away.
Why is this useful to us as marketers? Well now we can choose to show our ads to people who take the actions on site that we’re looking for. These ad campaigns are called conversion campaigns, here’s how simple it is to set these up.
First, select conversions as your campaign objective, then choose whether you want to use campaign budget optimisation (CBO) or not.
Now this is the fun part, at the ad set level you can choose what conversion event you want to optimise for.
For most Ecom stores we advise to trial your audiences against multiple different conversion events. Just because you have the option to choose a purchase event, it doesn’t necessarily always produce the best results.
However, because Facebook is so clever you will tend to get the best results when optimising for the purchase event. But…
If you are working with very low budgets you may want to choose an event that occurs higher up in the buyer funnel e.g. View Content or Add to Cart.
The reason for this is that Facebook needs a certain amount of event data to really get the most out of your campaign. The number released by Facebook is around 50 conversion events per week. However, we from experience we think you can lower this slightly to around 20-30 events.
And running those higher funnel events like view content gives you a much easier chance of hitting the recommended amount per week.