Up until recently, implementing the recently renamed Facebook Conversion API required custom development work or integration with a select few data partners, often with fees attached. After rumors in early September that a simple integration solution was coming, the API formerly known as Server-Side API is now available on Shopify via the Facebook Sales Channel.
Facebook Conversion API operates similarly to the Facebook Pixel in that it passes event data back to Facebook to improve ad performance and measurement but is distinct in that the information is passed directly from the server-side of the site to Facebook’s servers rather than from a browser. This server-to-server communication eliminates some of the current challenges where events may not be properly attributed from browsers due to poor network connections, long page load times, and ad-blockers. And as browsers are providing more user privacy friendly settings like phasing out third-party cookies and communicating plans to phase out first-party cookies, server-side tracking will become more important.
However, there’s no need to delete your Facebook Pixel yet. Facebook Conversion API isn’t meant to fully-replace the Facebook Pixel these days but rather work in conjunction with it. Instead of just one data-source, you can have both implemented as a redundancy with the API expected to provide data the pixel is missing. The Shopify integration will automatically deduplicate events to prevent any double-counting when using both data sources too. In addition to better measurement, Facebook Ads accounts with both data sources can expect better performance, as the account will have more data to help the algorithm better optimize ad delivery.
To implement Facebook Conversion API on Shopify, Install the Facebook Sales Channel app.
Facebook will then need to authorize a user. We recommend the authorized user here being the administrator of the store’s Facebook Business Manager.
A dialog box should appear where you should select the assets you would like Shopify to connect to. We recommend ensuring that Automatic Advanced Matching is toggled on.
Another dialog box will appear seeking permission for what operations Shopify would be allowed to control. We recommend allowing all functions.
Click on the Settings tab. Then click on the Data Sharing Settings section.
Make sure that Enable Tracking is toggled on. Then, we recommend selecting Maximum under Choose Tracking Level and then verify the correct Pixel ID is selected under View Tracking Details.
Finally, you will need to remove your previous installations of the Facebook Pixel. For some, this may be coded through the Shopify theme but the most common set up on Shopify is through Online Store sales channel’s Preferences. To remove the pixel from the Preferences, click on Online Store under Sales Channels. Then click on Preferences. Delete any numbers in the Facebook Pixel field.
And just like that, your Facebook Ads data is more robust.
We understand that making sure every integration is set up properly and properly working can be frustrating and time consuming. We love to partner with emerging brands and help set them up for success with their digital marketing. If you’re interested, contact us at [email protected].