The new Facebook pixel | Articles

In June 2015, Facebook announced some changes in the way website actions will be tracked. Currently, you need 2 different pixel to use the full potential of the Facebook advertising tool: an audience pixel, that could be used to create remarketing lists and a conversion pixel, to track actions on your website.

This Facebook conversion pixel will disappear mid-2016, and will be merged together with the audience pixel. Does this mean you can no longer track conversions or other website actions? No, on the contrary. You will be able to track even more conversion types.

As advertisers, we are focusing on getting traffic to our websites, and helping the customer to convert. Everything between the click to the website, and the eventual conversions is currently unclear (unless you use another web analytics platform). With this new Facebook Pixel, Facebook provides us with additional information on how people behave on our websites. When set-up correctly, you will gain access to extra metrics called micro-conversions.

For example, if you have an e-commerce website, you used to have a pixel to track your audiences, and a pixel to track your sales. In the future, you will be able to use the power of these 2 pixels, combined in one. You can now create audiences, track your sales, and track extra information like how many “searches”, “add to wishlist”,“add to carts” or “initiate checkouts” happened on your website.

How to setup the new Facebook Pixel

To setup your new Facebook pixel, you can find your Custom Audience Pixel in your Ads Manager. In the tools section, navigate to “Pixels” and view your pixel code in the “actions” bar.


When you already have a custom audience pixel implemented on your site, all you need is to make a few small changes in the pixel HTML code. If you don’t have a custom audience pixel in place, the setup is exactly the same.

According to the micro-conversions you want to track, or standard events as Facebook calls it, you need to add a single line of code in the pixel, depending on what you want to track.


In total, there are 9 standard events, so you could have a total of 9 customized pixels plus your standard, uncustomized Facebook Pixel. The 9 Standard Events, and the according code you need to add are indicated in the list below:

· Key Page Views: counts how many specific pages have been visited
fbq('track', 'ViewContent');

· Search: counts how many searches occurred on your website
fbq('track', 'Search');

· Add to cart: counts how many times customers added something to their cart
fbq('track', 'AddToCart');

· Add to wishlist: counts how many times customers added something to their wishlist
fbq('track', 'AddToWishlist');

· Initiate Checkout: count how many times customers started the checkout process
fbq('track', 'InitiateCheckout');

· Add Payment info: counts how many times customers filled in their Payment info
fbq('track', 'AddPaymentInfo');

· Make Purchase: counts sales on your website and how much it generated in revenue
fbq('track', 'Purchase', {value: '0.00', currency: 'EUR'});

· Lead: counts how many leads your website registered
fbq('track', 'Lead');

· Complete Registration: counts how many customers registered themselves on your website
fbq('track', 'CompleteRegistration');

To use the possibility to create remarketing lists based on your Facebook Pixel, you need to include the Facebook pixel on every page of your website. To track the standard events you need to customize your Pixel as indicated above, and implement it to the pages who track that specific standard event.

For example, the Facebook pixel with the ‘Purchase’ standard event should be placed on the confirmation or thank you page. It should be the only Facebook pixel on that page, so if you already have the Facebook pixel, without standard events included on this page, it is recommended to replace it with the Facebook Pixel with the purchase standard event.

The implementation of the Facebook pixel on the different pages could easily be managed by TMS tools like Google Tag Manager or Tealium.

There is more: Custom Conversions

The full potential of the new Facebook Pixel does not stop with tracking micro-conversions with the 9 different standard events. You can do more. A lot more.


A good marketeer wants to track all conversions, a great marketeer wants to track what different types of sales were generated.


Imagine you have an ecommerce website, and you’re selling different products. Let’s pick concert tickets, football tickets and movie tickets as an example. With the Standard event Purchase, you can track the sales of these tickets as a conversions. This is good, but we want to know exactly how many concert tickets, how many football tickets and how many movie tickets were sold. This is where the new Facebook Pixel adds great value: Custom conversions.


When the standard event purchase is correctly setup, you can differentiate your sales in different categories.

To do so, go to the ads manager. Under the “Tools” section, click “Custom Conversions”

Now you are ready to create Custom Conversions, and separate your different sales or standard events into different categories.

You can differentiate your standard events by applying rules. These rules define whether the Facebook Pixel should track your sale, and to what category it should count your sale. Rules can be defined per event, or per URL.

Back to our example. We want to set up Custom Conversions for our three types of sales: concert, football and movie tickets. To count the Movie tickets sold on our e-commerce website, we apply the rule, indicating the URL should contain /Movietickets. Next, we apply the custom event Purchase in this rule, indicating we want to track all sales after the customer passed the /Movietickets URL.


Only when a customer bought the ticket, and passed the /movietickets URL, Facebook will count this sale in the newly created Custom Conversion, names Movie Tickets.


When we do the same for the other types of tickets, we are able to track our different sales on our website. Note that the standard event Purchase will still track all purchases on your website, and will be a sum of all custom conversions.

How to use the pixel to track conversions?

When the standard events are added to the Facebook Pixel, your Facebook Pixel is added to your website, and your Custom Conversions are set up, it is time to see the impact of your new tracking.

To see your results, go to your desired campaign in the ads manager and click on customize columns. In the list of metrics, you can either select your standard events, or the Custom Conversions you’ve set up. Facebook will also give you the option to show the cost per conversion, and the total revenue if revenue is tracked.

Note: to see the results of your campaigns, it is crucial to apply your Facebook Pixel to your campaigns. When you don’t select your Facebook Pixel, or if you are still using the previous conversion pixel, you will only see empty metrics.

Standard events metrics:


Custom Conversions metrics:



The new Facebook pixel is a great improvement for advertisers who want to promote and track their sales via the social Media giant. The new tag provides us with a lot more options, as we are able to create (micro-) conversions in an easy and versatile way. This major tracking improvement will eventually enable us to make ads even more personalised and increase performances in the long run.

For more information, you can reach out to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Happy tracking !

Author : Bart Van Nieuwenhuyse





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