What is the Conversions API and why it’s important for your ecommerce business
There’s no doubt we live in a data driven world, and it won’t change. No business can really survive without accurate data to build strategies, track progress and drive success. For merchants with an ecommerce business, data is meant to become one of the biggest investments, 56% of professionals in the industry are allocating resources on data and analytics which makes it the top ecommerce activity budgeted for (Kantar Catalyst State of Ecommerce 2021).
At the same time, the tech and legal landscape are constantly evolving with users being more and more conscious about their privacy. In this context two players are adapting to new ways of data collection: merchants on one side of course, and the tools they use. Because of the latest iOS updates, the Chrome cookie updates to come, and the general idea of cookies as we know them coming to an end, Facebook, set up its Conversions API. With over 3 million businesses actively advertising on Facebook worldwide, and with 1,93 billion people surfing on the social network every day, it’s worth giving it a try.
In this article you’ll learn:
- What the Conversions API is
- How merchants can benefit from it
- How to install and use the Conversions API
What exactly is the Conversions API
Facebook itself describes the Application Programming Interface – or API – as a way to “enable businesses to share their data directly from their servers, instead of relying on web browsers”
In other words, the difference between Meta's Pixel and the Conversions API is that the first works with cookies and the latter directly with the server. So instead of collecting data from cookies that users must accept or that are totally blocked because of ad blockers, the CAPI transfers data from server to server.
This is a complementary tool to Meta's Pixel works and it works almost the same. You can select the events you want to track and in case there’s ad blockers on the client side, you’ll still be able to gather some of the essential data you need. You might need to go through extra coding in order to change the events tracked if you directly embedded a Facebook module into your ecommerce CMS.
The end goal of the Conversions API is to help merchants adapt to a potential cookieless world while allowing them to keep promoting their businesses on this social network. This is one of the reasons why online stores are advised to install this API in addition to Meta's Pixel. It’s a winning solution for merchants to keep driving their businesses on social channels.
How merchants can benefit from it
Merchants that work with the Conversions API will have a more reliable data connection, and have a more granular view of the behaviors they might want to track. This leads to gathering relevant insights about your audience and data to boost already existing campaigns. When used with Pixel, you’ll reach new customers while delivering the right messages and reducing ad cost budgets.
In short, as a merchant you’ll manage to keep optimizing your campaigns as the internet changes privacy and data sharing. So, if you want to be ready for a cookieless world, the Conversions API is a good way to go.
How to use the Conversions API as a merchant
There are different ways to instal the Conversions API. A quick easy way is to integrate a Facebook module to your ecommerce CMS that has the Conversions API in its features. PrestaShop Social is a one-click install module that allows both Pixel and the Conversions API, to let merchants deploy campaigns with peace of mind.
If you’re not using a CMS that can plugin the Conversions API you can hard code the API into your server.