Is Your Facebook Ads Performance Dropping After iOS14? Here’s How to Fix It

Here is how to improve FB results after the iOS14 updates that recently came out and have affected the performance of your FB ads from our team of Facebook Ads specialists at ADSPACE that have already tested and fixed dozens of clients’ accounts using these exact same methods.

Facebook is one of the best places to advertise any business. There are many ways to make the perfect ads for your needs and you can budget within their advertising module for each kind of ad uniquely. This means that you can direct traffic to your website with your Facebook ads, at a very low cost.

But what if your Facebook ads are not generating the results that they once did? This might be due to the recent updates to iOS14. This is due to the tracking features which Apple has blocked. While this might have been very useful from a security perspective, it is an unhelpful change related to advertising.

What is the AppTracking Transparency Framework?

Apple has stated that it was long overdue that their platform would allow users to opt-out of being tracked by advertisers. This is a change that is targeted at social media sites like Facebook and Instagram, but it will affect all kinds of ad tracking for those who opt-out. This means that social media sites will no longer be able to track or access demographic information about people who click on or view ads that are displayed on social media sites.

While this might seem like a great improvement in the user experience of social media for users, it is going to cause havoc with advertising practices that have been the norm for social media campaigns for quite some time now. For advertisers, the use of social media as an advertising platform of choice might wane as it becomes more and more difficult to track the information that should be gathered from impressions, clicks, and conversions.

For many small businesses as well as large companies, this change may prove a threat to the ability to effectively advertise products and services. While it might be considered admirable to allow people the chance to avoid being tracked while they are online, it is not a service to businesses to block the ability to target ads effectively while also preventing them from being able to advertise their products and services to a wide range of potential customers.

The impact of this change has yet to be fully felt, but Facebook is scrambling to be able to make allowances for the changes so that they can continue to offer effective advertising on their platform. Facebook knows that there have been issues with incorrect ad spend on certain campaign types already and they are scrambling to make sure that other ad campaigns are not greatly affected as the change becomes the norm.

Advertisers are concerned that this change indicates a new normal that will affect online advertising on all platforms, not just Facebook.

iOS14 .1 update screen

Who Is Affected By This Change?

Any company that advertises to a target audience will be affected greatly by this change. You will no longer be able to target audiences based on data that is necessary because iOS14 will prevent you from collecting that data or identifying it. You will also struggle to track conversion events.

This means that any ad strategy that includes re-optimization based on demographics or other key personal features for your target audience will be impossible. Perhaps the biggest issue will be the lack of reliable data that is now being generated by ads that were formerly targeted correctly.

For those who run ads of various types via Facebook, and any company that generates impressions and drives traffic to their website via Facebook ads, this will be a costly and frustrating set of changes to grapple with. Advertisers are already reporting a loss of conversion rates that can be as high as 20 or 30%.

What Can Adspace Do to Improve Your Ad Campaigns

1. Reduce Segmentation

While it can be very effective in other arenas to segment your data relentlessly to create the perfect set of target demographics, you will now be unable to leverage this system with Facebook ads. You will do far better with your ads if you create a consolidated account structure that is more efficient and less likely to generate incorrect data that you cannot utilize.

Reducing segmentation will also mean that you are not going to end up competing with yourself, which is a real risk with the lack of data that is being sent back by engagement with your ads on iOS14.

If you review the following graphic, you will see that there was a drop in purchases as well as a drop on return for ad spend. This was due to the frequency of the ad itself and the inability to target the right ads toward the right target audiences. 

The following adjustments can help you to change this outcome and improve your chances for getting your ads to perform well again. These changes are not drastic but you will need to rethink the way that you manage ads now that this change is in place.

2. Narrow Your Target

Creating a more focused intention with your outreach will help the algorithm lose fewer data and give FB a better and clearer starting point to determine who to show ads to. This will help you control your ad spending so that you are not sending out money and getting nothing back in return.

This is one of the key factors of this change. You could be spending money on ads that are actually competing with your other ads as well as sending ads to the wrong target demographic. These ads are all costing you money and you will not get any information back from iOS14 users about who they are when they click on your ads.

 3. Remove Campaigns

The other change that will help you to control your spending and collect improved data is to narrow your campaigns down to a few key campaigns that have a set focus. Do not use broad settings for these campaigns either. You will need to make it easy for the FB ad algorithm to find the right people based on key factors, rather than allowing it to look at anyone who might fit into your relative demographic.

You want to make sure that you are showing ads to people who are actually interested in seeing them rather than sending them out into the ether and hoping for the best. The FB ad algorithm cannot hope to find the right audience for you when faced with the limited information that iOS14 is giving back to it. You will need to make it clear what you want FB to do on your end.

4. Use Other Means of Tracking

IOS14 does not share the information that is collected by Apple until three days after the interaction has taken place. This makes any of your information about what has been done with engagement to your ads old, and much less useful to you for your needs. FB is going to just have to predict what it thinks needs to happen with your ads during that time since it does not have data to back its choices on.

Apple appears also to be sending back inaccurate data when it finally does send something back. There are other tracking modules and apps out there that you can use to track this data, and you are encouraged to figure out the right solution for your needs or to work with an advertising entity that has a solution for this issue in place.

The fixes that we have discussed can offer various improvements and some advertisers will find that their best option is different than another advertiser might need. ADSPACE has been working hard to optimize and research the various ways that you can optimize your ad processes to be sure that you get maximum results for our efforts. 

You can see from the graphic above that adjustments to poor performance factors that have already been discussed have made a big difference in the optimization processes in place. The granular control that is in place has made the delivery of the ads much more accurate than before.

5. CBO Campaigns Less Effective

You will want to shift your ads toward ASB campaigns. These appear to be performing far better than CBO campaigns. Formerly, people would use both kinds of campaigns to net the most impressions and to get the most impact from their efforts, but the CBO campaigns seem to be too broad at this time and have also been linked with incorrect ad spend and other issues.

Track any CBO spending that you have been seeing since the change. You can report to Facebook that there are issues with this spending and suggest that they check out the sudden spike in your ad spending for this type of campaign. They have been trying to devise solutions to this problem, and are aware that it has been impacting some users of their platform since the updates.

6. Pixel May be Affected

Pixel has always been a powerful tool to drive traffic to your website. Now, however, the pixel may not have the right data in hand to make these assessments or to track your desired audience as they engage with your Facebook ads or your website. This is going to create lasting changes in the way that people use tools like Pixel.

What Will Not Change

This is where things look up a little bit. You will need to look at these factors to continue to promote and improve your advertising. These will be the key factors that will not be impacted by the changes to iOS14.

Geographic Targeting – You will still be able to geo-target because geographical information is not blocked

Reach and Link-Click Base Campaigns – These types of campaigns have never relied on the optimization that is affected by these changes. While not as effective, they are viable ways to reach iOS users.

Interest-Based or Demographic Targeted Campaigns – These factors are still visible even with iOS14, so you will still be able to target for interests, age, and gender. The most minute combinations of these factors will still be hard to isolate but basics like this you should still have access to.

What About Custom Audiences?

This is a place where businesses need to make a big effort if they have not been worried about creating these audiences in the past. You can still upload a custom audience set to Facebook and it should still generate good results for you with your ads. This might be one of the biggest workarounds that you will be able to leverage for the future with iOS14 in place.

Another area that has continued to function better than general Facebook ad campaigns is lookalike audiences. The quality of the results returned by these audiences will still be degraded some due to iOS14, but you should get the right demographic hits more often than if you let Facebook try to target audiences for you.

These two groups of audiences are directly linked, so you cannot use the lookalike option without leveraging the custom audience feature. Make sure that your custom audience is correctly segmented and targeted and keep tabs on changes that you might need to make to it before you create a lookalike that is based on it. This will ensure the best results over the long term.

Can Adspace Fix My Existing Ads?

There are some fixes that seem to be generating big results for some people. You can try pausing your existing ad campaign, duplicating the account, and then enabling the duplicate. This seems to help in most cases, but it is not 100% foolproof.

There are some other suggestions that seem to be helping get around the limitations of iOS14 as well. You should make sure that you verify your website’s domain so that your campaigns are not disrupted. Also, make sure that you prioritize events because the changes to iOS14 have caused Facebook to limit you to eight events per domain. Your Pixel counts as one of these events.

You can also update your Facebook SDK for iOS. This will help personalize and improve the ads that are delivered to iOS users and make sure that you are getting better reporting out of these placements and engagements. You can also update automation in conversion windows to change them to a 7-day window.

The list of suggestions that came before this can be put into place for all of your existing ads as well, with the exception of those that are based on CBO logic. This will take some time, but converting your ad types to meet the demands that are being caused by the changes will help save you money and make sure that you are still showing your ads to a maximum number of targeted people every day.

Work With a Qualified Team to Manage Your Facebook Ads

As these changes continue to create new challenges for everyone who is using Facebook ads to drive traffic and conversions on their website, many businesses are worried about what this will mean for their ongoing Facebook ad campaign strategies.

This is where it can be a good idea to work with a talented team that knows how to manage Facebook ad strategies and campaigns despite the changing landscape that has been caused by iOS14 challenges. Working with Adspace can make all the difference in your experience with your Facebook ad campaigns. There is a lot of information that is changing and a lot of alterations to the way that Facebook ads are working right now, and it can be tiring to keep up.

Contact us today if you want to make sure that your current Facebook ad strategies and campaigns will not experience a major drop in productivity and effectiveness. We can help you to weather the storm and get the most out of your Facebook ads despite Apple’s changes to its data tracking behavior.

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