Apple iOS 14 Privacy Measures and Impact on Facebook Ads

Impact Apple iOS 14 has on Facebook Ads

Apple announced their newest operating system iOS 14 in June 2020. One of the most impactful features was the requirement that all apps in the App Store must now show a prompt upon first open or install that explicitly requests permission to track users across other apps and websites (as opposed to the default opt-in). Digital advertisers requested more time to make preparations for this change. Although iOS 14 still released to the public in September 2020, Apple postponed the launch of that specific safety feature to as early as January 2021.

Below is a list of some of the most important changes made on Facebook as of Tuesday, January 19th:

  • Conversion Event Limitations: You will now be limited to the use of eight conversion events – standard and custom combined – per domain for optimization and reporting. 
    • Domain verification establishes which Business Manager account has the authority to configure and prioritize the eight available conversion events for a given domain, and should be prioritized for domains with pixels used by multiple businesses or personal ad accounts. When an event is changed, you must wait 72 hours until the campaign can start running with the update.
      • Three Ways to Verify Domain
        1. Add a DNS TXT entry to your DNS record to confirm that you own the domain
        2. Upload an HTML file provided by Facebook to your web directory and confirm domain ownership in Business Manager.
        3. Add a meta tag to the section of your domain home page
  • Attribution Changes: The 28-day click-through, 28-day view-through, and 7-day view-through attribution windows are no longer supported. The default is now 7-day click-through and 1-day view-through, which may result in a decrease in the number of reported conversions. For campaigns completed before January 19, 2021, results will be based on the previous attribution setting for your account.
  • Delayed Reporting: Data may be delayed up to three days, as real-time reporting for iOS devices will no longer be supported. Additionally, website conversion events will be reported based on the time the conversions occur and not the time of ad impressions. There may be a 24-48 hour delay when an offsite conversion is reported from iOS users.
  • Targeting Limitations: Due to more people opting out of tracking on iOS 14, the size of your app connections, app activity Custom Audiences, and website Custom Audiences may decrease.
  • No Support for Breakdowns: Delivery and action breakdowns will not be supported for web or app conversion events. This includes demographic breakdowns such as age, gender, and region.

The Facebook marketing landscape is assuredly going to go through an adjustment period in the coming months and years, as audience sizes and the ability to serve highly personalized ads, and conversion attribution windows will all be diminished.

However, these disruptions also present us with an opportunity to evolve with modern solutions and tactics that are more focused on user privacy. Verifying domains as needed, prioritizing which eight conversion events are most important to you and your company, and re-establishing performance metric baselines based on these parameters are great places to start while we are still in the early stages of this new policy. As time progresses and more information moves to the forefront, new guidelines and best practices will come into focus. We will be here to help you make sense of it all. Need more in-depth help to make sense of how this change could impact your digital marketing strategies? Give us a call and we’ll work with you to ensure you can get the most out of your digital efforts.

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