What you need to know about the iOS 14 Privacy Update for Facebook Ads

What’s going on: 

Apple’s release of iOS 14 now gives users the choice of whether or not they want to be tracked. Facebook is calling foul, accusing Apple of being greedy, and doing this in the name of profits rather than security.  

Implications: Anyone running ads on Facebook will suffer in both performance and reporting transparency if you aren’t prepared appropriately for the changes. 

Luckily, there are some steps you can take that will mitigate the overall impact to your Facebook Ads Campaigns. Here, we’ll discuss those steps.

Let’s get started. 

Facebook has been asking for businesses to verify their businesses in Business Manager for a while, but recently, they’ve doubled down on the importance of this step as it pertains to the iOS 14 update. This is especially true if the business has multiple business units and multiple domains (Verification must be done at the effective top level domain plus one: eTLD+1).

You can verify your domain in Business manager under Brand Safety, then Domains. 

Similar to Domain verification for Google Search Console, you’ll be able to verify via an HTML file upload or a DNS TXT record. Additional documentation on how to complete this step can be found here. 

Since the iOS 14 Privacy Update roll out, each Facebook Pixel will only be able to “host” 8 conversion events. For some businesses this won’t feel so limiting, while others will need to make some decisions here. These 8 conversion events will be your only options when it comes to account optimization. Now, you’ll still be able to track more web based events from your Pixel, you just won’t be able to configure any more than 8 conversion events. This is how Facebook is able to utilize it’s aggregated event measurement protocol for users that opt out of the iOS data sharing option. 

If you don’t delegate the conversion events yourself, Facebook will define them for you based on the ones Facebook thinks are most relevant to your business.

You’ll be able to configure your preferences (i.e. define these events) in the Events Manager. There will be no need to make changes to the pixel or Conversions API Implementation.

If a user opts out of tracking, we would only see purchase (highest priority event) reported in events manager/ads manager. If the user opts-in, we will see all events as we do currently (example: VC > ATC > IC > Purchase)

Offsite conversion events will be reported based on the time the conversions occur and not the time of ad impressions. AKA - you’ll no longer have delayed attribution. There are also reports that it can take up to 3 days from when a conversion event occurs for it to be passed back to Facebook, as opposed to how it was recorded where data is passed when the event occurs.

Delivery and action breakdowns are not supported for offsite conversion events.

On the measurement front, 28-day click-through, 28-day view-through, and 7-day view-through attribution windows will no longer be supported (historical data for these windows will remain accessible.) Thus, certain attribution windows will immediately have only partial reporting available, and metrics won’t include all events from iOS 14 users.

Instead, 7-day click will be the default attribution window moving forward, with the new attribution settings supported being:

Another important change to take into account is that custom audiences are now much smaller. Exclusions will be less accurate (you may have past purchasers in your prospecting campaigns).

The best move is to be proactive. Identify the most important conversion events in your funnel then reduce them down to 8 key conversion events prior to the update.

New Items:

Utilize UTM’s

UTMs (Urchin Tracking Module) are simple code snippets that can be added to the end of your URLs to provide data to Google Analytics. This is significant because you can then see conversion/traffic data specific to certain channels, campaigns, creatives, etc. UTM’s are also very easy to configure, and there are many websites that will automatically make the URL for you. 

Now that you have UTMs set up, you can filter your Google Analytics data by the above fields in order to see detailed information about how your campaign performed.

We always recommend using UTMs for an added layer of data analytics. Additionally, if you’re using multiple platforms - odds are your attribution reporting doesn’t match across them all. However, if you’re using UTMs you can look at all the campaigns using the same attribution lens your Google Analytics account utilizes.  

Setup a GA4 Property

Google Analytics has released the newest version of analytics called Google Analytics 4. This will become the new standard for Google Analytics, although you can still utilize your UA profiles. Google Analytics is a must have tool that provides detailed reporting on website visits, conversion tracking, and insights that will help you bring your website to the next level. 

Google Analytics 4 will bring new insights and data about why users are on your website (or app), and will be able to more accurately attribute actions and data properly. 

If you already have analytics set up on your website, Google makes it simple to switch to GA4. Within your ‘Admin’ tab to bring up your settings and underneath the ‘Property’ tab the first option should be Google Analytics 4 Property Setup Assistant. From here, simply follow the steps and Google will create a GA4 version of your analytics. 

Full steps on how to add a GA4 Profile to your existing Analytics account: Here

If you don’t have analytics on your site at all; your first step is to create an account. From here, you will be able to enter your websites information and be given options on how to get the Google Analytics tags onto your website. 

Full steps on how to create your brand new Analytics account: Here

User Guide: Setup Google Analytics Ecommerce Tracking like a Pro

If you've ever run an ecommerce store, you know that you can't just rely on the ecommerce tracking analytical data reports, provided by your ecommerce cart provider.

However, that information simply is not enough on its own.

As an ecommerce business, you need to look at more than just how users are generally interacting with your site. You need to know how these actions specifically affect sales on different products. You want to be able to see how much revenue is being generated, how many transactions are happening, and more. You'll need more than the standard Google Analytics Goals setup.

That's why you NEED an undeniably powerful tool like Google Analytics, integrated into your ecommerce store.

Only Google Analytics ecommerce tracking allows you to correlate sales data, with website usage data (i.e., sessions, bounce rate, traffic source / medium, landing pages, etc.). Even though some of these are basic, and easy-to-set-up, they play a crucial role in providing data about the store's performance, so that you can use those data to make decisions, that improves your business.

What are the metrics used in ecommerce tracking?

In ecommerce tracking, general metrics - such as bounce rate, avg. session duration, etc. - aren't enough. That is to say, you need more data about specific things.

Below is a list of metrics that are used in ecommerce tracking.

  1. Product SKU -

SKU - or Stock Keeping Unit - is a distinct type of item for sale, such as a product or service, and all attributes associated with the item type that distinguish it from other item types.

  1. Ecommerce conversion rate -

This is the percentage of sessions, resulted in transactions, in a given time period.

ECR = (total ecom transactions / total website sessions) * 100

  1. Transactions and transaction IDs -

Transaction (or an ecommerce transaction) is a purchase order.

For example, 1000 transactions means 1000 purchase orders, that were placed on the store.

For example, each of those transactions, is identified through a unique ID, known as transaction IDThe nature of the transaction ID may be different from one store, to another. One store might be using a only-digits system, while another might be using a mixed one.

Keep in mind that a single transaction ID can include several products, and/or several units of the same product, since a person can buy more than a single product, in just one transaction.

  1. Revenue -

The 'revenue' that you see on the ecommerce overview report is the total revenue, that your store generated in a given time period.

Total revenue = total product revenue + total taxes + total shipping

The total revenue figure on the overview report depends upon how ecommerce tracking has been set up.

For example, if the tax / shipping information isn't provided while setting up the ecommerce tracking, then Google Analytics can't include those information in its report. Thus they won't be included in the total revenue figure.

  1. Average order value -

Average order value is the average value of an ecommerce transaction.

AOV = total revenue / total number of transactions

  1. Unique purchases -

Unique purchases is the total number of times, a product, or a set of products was a part of a transaction.

There are 2 categories of unique purchases in Google Analytics.

  1. Total unique purchases of a set of products.
  2. Total unique purchases of a product.

Consequently, keep in mind that total unique purchases of a product isn't equal to total number of units sold for the product in one transaction.

In order to find the number of units of a product that were sold in a single transaction, follow these steps;

  1. Click on a product link in the 'product performance' report. (Under conversions > ecommerce)
  2. Add 'transaction ID' as a 'secondary dimension'.
  3. Sort the 'unique purchases' column in decreasing order.

In the report, you'll can see the column for the number of units of a product that were sold in a single transaction. It's located right below the total unique purchases figure.

  1. Quantity

This is the total number of units that were sold, in a product, or a set of products.

In Google Analytics, there are 2 categories of quantity - just like in TUP.

  1. Total number of units sold in a set of products.
  2. Total number of units sold in a product.

 

8. Average quantity

Average quantity is the average number of units sold, in a product or a set of products, in one transaction.

Avg. Quantity = Quantity / Unique Purchases

  1. Average price -

This is the average price of a single unit of a product.

Avg. Price of a set of products = Total product revenue / total quantity

Avg. Price of a single product = price of a single unit of a product

  1. Product revenue -

This is the total revenue generated from a product, or a set of products.

Product revenue = Quantity * avg. price

Note: Product revenue doesn't include taxes and shipping fees.

  1. Per session value -

This is the avg. value of a session of your ecommerce store website.

Per session value = total revenue / total sessions

The higher the value of a session of your ecommerce store, the more valuable the traffic for it.

Setting up ecommerce tracking in Google Analytics.

Follow these steps to set up ecommerce tracking.

Step 1: Go to your Analytics account.

Step 2: Add the Google Analytics tracking code to the <head> section of all of the pages on your website.

The easiest way to install Google Analytics on a WordPress site, is to use a plugin like Insert Headers and Footers for WordPress. This allows you to just place the code directly into the plugin, and it’ll show up on every page of your site automatically.

Step 3: Integrate your shopping cart (i.e., Shopify, BigCommerce, etc.) with Google Analytics. Check the help documents provided by the vendor.

Step 4: Add the tracking code to the order confirmation / thank you page. Then add a server-side script (i.e., PHP, ASP, etc.) to it, so that it can pull data from the shopping cart, and send them to Google Analytics servers.

Step 5: Enable ecommerce reporting in the Google Analytics view. Go to admin > view > ecommerce settings, and click the 'enable ecommerce' toggle to turn it on.

Step 6: Add an additional snippet of code to your already-installed pixel to be able to track sales, adds to cart, and more.

This is the code you’ll add to the pixel:

ga(‘require’, ‘ecommerce’, ‘ecommerce.js’);

You need to replace ga(‘create’ , ‘UA-your id’, ‘auto’) in order for it to work. You can find out more about this here.

codeing

If you’re using a third party Shopping Cart (not Shopify), you’ll need to set up cross-domain tracking. This will involve using the same tracking pixel on both sites, allowing you to track checkouts all the way through. Here's the Google’s guide on how to do this.

Step 6: Determine all the webpages which make up your shopping cart funnel - including the order confirmation page -and set up a funnel for your checkout process in Google Analytics.

Step 7: Place a test transaction, and check whether you're getting the correct data in the Analytics reports.

Note: Make sure to reverse, or exclude the data from the test transactions in your actual reports.

Where can you see ecommerce metrics in Google Analytics?

You can see ecommerce metrics in many reports (under conversions > ecommerce), as well as via the 'Ecommerce' explorer tab in many other Analytics reports.

ecommerce-database

Ecommerce data you can see on Analytics.

To clarify, ecommerce data is transaction data plus item data.

This provides details about users' transactions, such as;

Item data provides details about purchased products, such as;

Keep in mind that Google Analytics for ecommerce will look a little different than Google Analytics for other types of businesses. This is because the focus is more on revenue, transactions, and how website usage is driving sales in measurable, concrete ways. Dive in and make it happen.

User Guide: Setup Google Analytics Goals Like a Pro

Unarguably, Google Analytics is the best tool to monitor the performance of your website. And chances are, you're already using it to track pageviews, unique visitors, bounce rate, etc.

There's also something important in there. Some might argue that this is the most important metric, out of all that Google Analytics offers.

Google Analytics Goals.

'Goals' is one of the most important business metrics you can track as it contributes to your business’ growth. That’s because ‘Goals’ are the actions you want your customers / visitors to take on your website.

For example, Goals can tell you how many people have signed up to your contact form along with the conversion rate for that form. That can help you keep track of your lead generation efforts very easily, along with any other ‘objectives’ you have, regarding your business.

Goal tracking in Google Analytics will help you understand if your site is helping you to move forward or causing a lot of confusion for your users.

Among the metrics you can track with Goals are...

But, in order to monitor these metrics and make sure your business objectives are being met, you have to define your objectives, and set them up on Google Analytics in the first place.

But don’t set up goals just for the sake of it.

Note: Goals are limited to 20 per reporting view.

When you start to setup Google Analytics Goals, it is not an exercise you should complete just to tick a box in some to-do list. It doesn't work like that. A Goal should be something that truly contributes to the bottom line and/or growth of the business – for example, lead generating Goals like lead gen form completions.

Determining and defining your business objectives.

Essentially, this might be the hardest part on this. Because you need to clearly define your objectives in a S.M.A.R.T. way. If your business has multiple decision makers, then all of them need to be on the same page with these objectives.

Through collaboration, they should determine how the website needs to help the company achieve its overall goals.

Also, identify what these goals are worth to the business. For example, determine how many leads reach a sale. What is that sale worth? What are your profit margins?

KPIS

After you've defined what a goal conversion is worth, you can get a better understanding of the return you’re getting from your marketing and advertising efforts. Note: It’s important to mention that all parties need to understand the difference between Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and site goals.

KPIs are metrics, which help us to reach a goal (i.e., items added to a cart, video starts, clicks to chat or contact an organization). It’s okay to monitor KPIs via event tracking in Analytics but they shouldn't be mistaken as goals, because goals are the overall end result that you desire from a site user’s journey through your funnel. This may be a newsletter signup, a lead gen form submission, a sale, a web chat session, etc. So they're different from KPIs.

Set Up Google Analytics Goals:

Step 1 – Set up a Goal in Google Analytics.

  1. Sign into your Google Analytics account and select the Admin account at the top of your screen.
  2. After you've agreed upon goals for our site, you can move into Google Analytics, within the Admin > Goals section to set up your goals.
  3. You’ll be given the opportunity to choose between a template-based goal or a custom goal format. These are basically the same and from our experience, and it’s easier if you choose the custom format.

how to setup a google analytics goal

Step 2 – Choose your goal type.This will help you decide the best Goal type(s) that will help you measure your digital marketing objectives and KPI’s.

Here’s a brief breakdown to understand description of each Goal type.

It's usually not recommended to setup Google Analytics goals based on metrics like pages per session or visit duration. These aren’t goals, they’re KPI metrics.

For example, if someone visited five pages on your site, or stayed on it for 3 minutes, it doesn’t create sales, or generate leads. It likely helps you, but it’s not an end goal.

Step 3 – Learn what each Goal type means, and how to set them up.

  1. Destination Goals -

Destination Goals measure the end page your user has reached, after taking a specific action (i.e., completing a lead gen form, signing up for a newsletter, etc.).

When a user visits the set html page that you’ve specified, it triggers your Destination Goal. These are ideal for tracking ‘Thank You’ pages or confirmation pages for prospects.

How to set up your Destination Goals?

analytics goals

i. Set Your Goal URL -

The URL you select should be a page that your prospects see AFTER they completed your desired conversion action (i.e., select the ‘Thank You’ page URL, that appears after your user has signed up for your newsletter). You don’t need enter the complete URL – just the request URI.

Which means, use

 /lead-submission-thank-you

Instead of,

https://example.com/p/lead-submission-thank-you

Also, there are 3 choices to choose from, which will help meet your goal destination needs.

  1. Equals to: /lead-submission-thank-you -
    Your goal page is one exact destination.

    /lead-submission-thank-you
  2. Begins With: /receipt -
    You have several different goal URLs associated to one goal family or URLs that are unique due to an e-commerce cart receipt.

    /receipt-12345

    /receipt-12346

    /receipt-12347
  3. Regular Expression: contact|directions -
    You may have goal URL formats that belong in one goal family, but have very different URL formats. With a moderate understanding of how regular expressions work, you can typically accommodate any goal URL variation need that you could think of.

    /contact.html

    /directions.html

 

ii. Decide Whether to Set a Monetary Value -

If you know how much a conversion for a specific Goal type is worth to your business, you can enter that value here (i.e., €5), and let Google Analytics track each Goal completion as a monetary value, which in turn allows you to track how much money your business is making from those conversions. To set your value, just click the toggle on, and enter the value into the box. On the other hand, if you don’t wish to set a monetary value, then simply leave the toggle turned off.
iii. Set your match type -

Your match type allows you to decide how strict Google Analytics is in, when deciding if a URL counts. If you choose Exact Match only your specific chosen URL will work so this is not ideal if your system generates unique URLs for specific users. Head Match, on the other hand, tracks all visits to your specified URL no matter what comes after that URL so choose this if you’re adding UTM parameters or if you’re using unique URLs. Regular sessions are best left to the pros but you can visit this Google Analytics Guide if you’d like to give it a go.
iv. Decide Whether to Create a Goal Funnel -

Goal Funnels allow you to set up defined points you would like to measure, for how users move through your site in order to complete the goals you want them to complete. It’s ideal for seeing the exact points where users drop off of your funnel, so that you know where should you investigate and fix.

These are only useful when you need your visitors to follow a set of specific pages, before completing your Goal. For example, something like a landing page won’t require you to set up Goal Funnels, as users will automatically move from the landing page straight to the thank you or confirmation screen. However, if users are moving from a checkout process to make a purchase there may be many steps you’d like to track along the way, in order to make sure that your pages are well optimized for conversions.

v. Set Up a Goal Funnel -

Turn on the 'Funnel' toggle by clicking on it. Then enter the URL of each page you would like to track, in order to move users through the funnel and towards your Goals. To add another step/page to your funnel, click the ‘Add another Step’ button. To make sure you require the visitors to complete each step, click the ‘Required step’ toggle.

Now Create & Save Your Destination Goal.

To complete your set-up simply click ‘Create Goal’ or ‘Save Goal.’

 

  1. Pages/Screens Goals

(This one is rather easy, and pretty straightforward.)

Pages/Screens Goals measure (obviously) how engaged your prospects are, by tracking the number of pages or screens a visitor views throughout a session. Set the minimum number of pages (i.e., 3 pages) you would like your visitors to view, per session. Each time a visitor visits more than your specified number of pages per session, it'll be marked as a Goal completion.

Now Create & Save Your Page/Screens Goal

To complete your set-up simply click ‘Create Goal’ or ‘Save Goal.’

Note: Like I said before, it's usually not recommended to set goals based on metrics like pages per session or visit duration. These aren’t goals, they’re KPI metrics.

Just because someone visited five pages on your site, or stayed on your website for 3 minutes, doesn’t mean that it's a sale, or even a conversion. It'll help you decide whether your website can attract people, and retain them, but it's not an end goal.

  1. Event Goals

Event Goals track specific interactions that visitors make with your website's content. For example, this could mean, playing a video, downloading a PDF, signing up to your newsletter, or even landing on your page from an external link.

To set up an Event Goal, first you need to set up the specific interaction you want your visitors to take, as an Event, using an Event Tracking Code. You can learn how to set up Event Tracking using this handy guide from Google. Once you've set up your Event Tracking Code, you can follow the steps outlined below to set up your Event Goal.

How to Track the Goals You Have Set Up & View Your Conversion Rate


Note that goal conversions also appear in other reports throughout Google Analytics, including the Multi Channel Funnels report (in the Conversions section) and in the Acquisition reports.

Conclusion

Having properly configured Google Analytics Goals will give you the opportunity to truly understand your audience; who they are, what they're doing, their journey through your funnels, and whether or not they're converting toward your business objectives. Properly setup goals are one of the most important things you should be doing for your SEM strategy.

This ultimate guide contains everything that you need to know, in order to set up Goals in Google Analytics, so that you can reap its benefits.

How to set up Google Analytics for your Business

Google Analytics is one of the best tools you can use today if you sell or gather leads on your website.

Period. Best of all? It’s Free. These simple tips and tricks will help you set up Google Analytics and will ensure that you get the most out of your Google Analytics account so that you can get more leads, drive more sales, and find out what is working (especially helpful for the person handling your PPC Management).

set up google analytics

Step 1: Goals

The first thing you should do is set up Goals. Goal tracking will allow you to identify how people, that are buying  things are actually getting to your site. Are they on a mobile device or desktop? Did they search for you on Google, and if so, what search terms did they use? Uncover this information to focus on building what works and fixing what isn’t working.

Step 2: Dashboard

The next thing you should do is set up your custom dashboard. This is where you’ll identify the KPI’s that are most important to you. If you run an e-commerce website, and once you set up Google Analytics, you'll be ready to dive into advanced e-commerce tracking. If you are collecting leads, you'll want to identify your cost per lead, view how different devices impact conversion rate, and more. In other words, you'll need to identify the important measures of success. Once you know those factors, you can build out a dashboard that gives you the answers to these business questions quickly and easily. Your SEO Services provider will really like the added visibility into data with a custom dashboard designed around organic traffic.

Step 3: Customization

Once yo've got the basics dialed in, you should configure some of the more advanced features custom to your setup. Do you or your employees use your website frequently? If so, you should consider setting up an IP filter so internal traffic doesn't skew your website metrics. When you're ready to get more advanced with event tracking (think PPC advertising), you can setup Google Tag Manager with event triggers to track scrolling, specific button clicks, and much more. This level of customization is crucial to running an effective remarketing campaign.

Summary

In conclusion, taking the steps to set up Google Analytics will be the foundation to measuring your online success. It's a lightweight tool that is easy to setup, configure, and will deliver value to your business from day one.