Having the Facebook Pixel and other technical configurations set up correctly on your website is a very underrated element of running Facebook ads successfully. That’s why we have created this Advanced Facebook Pixel Audit checklist that makes it easier to audit Facebook Pixel setup by going through a checklist that helps you identify setup issues, missing Pixel events, and other incorrect technical Facebook ads settings.
This Facebook audit can be broken down to 5 parts and 21 checkpoints:
- General Facebook Pixel Audit
- Standard Pixel Events Audit
- Custom Pixel Events Audit
- Custom Conversions Audit
- Audit of other technical Facebook ads settings
We have created a 21 step checklist that you can use for any kind of website to audit and analyze their Facebook Pixel implementation and find errors, incorrect technical setups, and to give recommendations on what they should improve to get better Facebook Pixel data.
To make this Advanced Facebook Audit Checklist easier to use we also made a Facebook Spreadsheet that you can make a copy of and use for your own purposes. To get the Advanced Facebook Audit Checklist, click on this button:
General Facebook Pixel Audit
Before really diving deep into the audit of specific Facebook Pixel events, first, we want to get an overview of the current status of the Facebook Pixel installation to get a quick glance if there is a major issue with the current implementation.
It doesn’t make sense to improve the implementation of Facebook Pixel Events if the current Pixel installation has some serious issues that make the Facebook tracking completely inaccurate.
There are 6 checkpoints we have to go through here
Let’s go through them one by one.
1. Has a Facebook Pixel been created for this website?
As the first point in the checklist, you should check in the Facebook Events Manager, under the Data Sources section, if there is a Facebook Pixel or multiple FB Pixels created in your Events Manager.
If no Pixel has been created yet, then here you can find a tutorial on how to create the Facebook Pixel in your FB Business Manager. You can also check out this easy tutorial on Facebook Pixel setup and some basic Facebook Pixel concepts:
2. Is a Facebook Pixel installed on the website?
The easiest way to check this is by installing the Facebook Pixel Helper Chrome Extension to your website. Once you installed it, go to your website and check if it can detect a PageView Event on your website.
When it can detect something on your website the Extension icon will turn blue and a green number will appear in the extension. By clicking on it, you can see how many FB Pixel IDs can be detected on the Page.
3. Are multiple Facebook Pixels installed on the page?
Continuing with the previous point, you should also check if there are multiple Facebook Pixels installed on your website.
There are several reasons why there are multiple Facebook Pixel installed on the website (testing purposes, the checkout or membership section of your website is hosted on another domain, etc.), so it is important to understand which are the main Facebook Pixels, and if are all of them necessary to have.
If there are multiple FB Pixels installed on your website, understand why they were installed and based on that make the Pixel audit on all of them separately.
4. How was the Facebook Pixel installed and Pixel Events set up on your website?
It is also very crucial to know how the Facebook Pixel was installed and the Pixel Events set up on the website:
- when we want to see the exact implementation of Pixel Standard or Custom Events we have to know where to check that or who we should ask.
- when we find any kind of implementation error we will know where to go who should we ask to fix it
We have written about the various methods that can be used to install the Facebook Pixel on your website, you can check the Pixel installation guide here. But the major implementation methods are:
- Partner integration
- Manual installation and setup with the Event Setup Tool
- Manual installation and setup with the help of a developer
- Manual installation setup the Facebook Pixel with Google Tag Manager (our preferred method)
5. Is there a significant difference between Facebook Pixel Events data and Google Analytics data?
You won’t be able to check this for every kind of Facebook Pixel Events, but the Facebook Pixel PageView can be definitely checked against Google Analytics PageViews metric.
To see the number of Pixel PageView events, you can check that by going to the Overview tab of the specific Facebook Pixel and under the Events section, check the PageView Event row. Here the number you will see as ‘Total Events Received’ will tell you how many PageView events this FB Pixel recorded.
In Google Analytics you can check the same metric by going to Behavior→ Overview page and look for the Pageviews metric.
The two numbers don’t have to be exactly the same, but if there is a big difference between the two, it shows that there is an issue with either your Facebook Pixel or your Google Analytics tracking.
Update: with the iOS14 update unfortunately this is only worth checking for Android devices.
6. Which websites are sending data to Facebook via the Facebook Pixel?
Another thing that is worth checking before starting to audit the specific Standard and Custom Events is which domains send Pixel data to Facebook from this particular FB Pixel.
If you find that other websites that are not related to your site are sending data to Facebook via this Pixel, then you should remove or block the Pixel from those websites as it will lead to inaccurate tracking.
To find out which websites send data to your website, you should click on this link: https://business.facebook.com/events_manager2/list/pixel/, choose the FB Pixel you are currently auditing and click on the ‘number+ more’ link on the right side of the screen.
Standard Pixel Events Audit
The second part of this Advanced Facebook audit, is the Standard Pixel Events Audit that is is the most important part of this audit.
Every website will have at least the PageView event set up if they install the Facebook Pixel on their website. For an ideal FB Pixel Setup, almost every site should have at least a couple of Standard Events active on their website so they can also run FB ads campaigns with a conversion objective.
We have a 4-point checklist that will help you to evaluate each of these Standard Events that are currently set up for your website and see if there are Standard Events that are missing from your current implementation.
Keep in mind that one of the Facebook audit checkpoints is related to the Object Properties of the Standard Events but not all the 17 Standard Events have required Object Properties.
7. What Standard Events are set up right now?
As we mentioned, there are 17 Standard Events predefined by Facebook at the time of writing this article. In most cases, you will have less than 10 Standard Events set up for your website which is totally okay as it is very rare that it makes sense to set up more than 10 Standard Events. With the iOS 14 update Facebook will only allow 8 Events anyway.
You can check all of your Facebook Pixel Events that are receiving activity on the Overview tab of your Facebook Pixel
8. Are there important Standard Events missing from your implementation?
Before you would audit the Pixel Events that have been set up an important question to ask if there are any Facebook Pixel events currently missing from the website.
If there is an important user action that is currently not tracked by the Facebook Pixel, then you should definitely set that up.
9. Are the Standard Events having any implementation issues?
From this point, you should go over each Pixel Events and analyze checkpoints 9 and 10 for each of them.
First, we want to check if the specific Pixel Event is recording data when it should be recording data and if the number of Pixel fires is accurate. You can check this in multiple ways as well, we will share two methods for it.
The first method is the one we have already mentioned. Let’s say you want to check a Purchase Standard event. In this case, you can compare the number of Purchases recorded in Google Analytics with the number of Purchase Events firing in Facebook Events Manager. If the two numbers are close to each other, we can assume that the general setup of the Purchase event is correct.
A second way is to check on which pages the Pixel Event has activated on your website. You can do this by going to the Overview tab of your Facebook Pixel, then click on the Pixel Event you are analyzing and then click ‘View Details’.
Here you will be able to see on which URLs the Pixel Event activated and how many event parameters were sent in to Facebook:
To continue with the previous example, if you see that the Purchase event is not only firing on a ‘thank-you’ page, that might indicate that the setup is incorrect.
10. Are the necessary Object Properties/parameters sent in with the Standard Event in the right format?
If you are sending in the Pixel Event at the right user interaction, the next things you should check are Object Properties or as also called Event Parameters. With the right event parameters and values, you will be able provide additional information to Standard Events that both you as the advertiser and the Facebook algorithm can take advantage of.
There are Standard Event parameters that are required for certain Standard Events, there are certain Standard Events where there are no predefined event parameters so we cannot provide you.
As a best practice, it is recommended to send in all the predefined event parameters as then Facebook can also use them. You can also use the event parameters and values to set up more segmented Custom Audience which will translate into better targeted retargeting and lookalike audiences.
To see the full list of predefined Object Properties of FB Standard Events, check out our article on the 17 Facebook Standard Events.
When you are auditing the Standard Events, you should not only check if the event parameters are set up, but also see if the event values are sent in the right format. We have written extensively about how you can check id the Standard Events are having issues in our Standard Events guide.
Facebook Pixel Custom Events Audit
Unlike Facebook Standard Events, as the name implies, Custom Events are not predefined by Facebook, so it is more difficult to give you a standardized template that you can use to audit the Facebook Custom Events implemented for your Facebook Pixel.
However, in the Custom Event section of this Advanced Facebook Audit you can basically go through the same audit steps that you have gone through with the Standard Events.
11. Are Facebook Custom Events set up for your website?
You can check this by going to the Events Manager and click on the Facebook Pixel, you are auditing.
In the Overview tab, you will be able to see all Facebook Custom Events that have received any hits in the last 28 days.
Besides Custom Events, you will also see here all active Custom Conversions and your Standard Events.
12. Is the specific Custom Event having any implementation issues?
Standard Events are well-documented by Facebook so it is really easy to find implementation errors. With Custom Events it is a little bit more difficult as the event was defined by you, or by a developer or by your client.
In this case, first you should make sure you understand what user actions the specific Custom Events should track and when should it track it.
As with Standard Events a great way to check if Custom Events are working right if you can compare the number of times a Custom Event has occurred with the number of occurrences of a Google Analytics event that describes the same user action on the website.
The next thing you can do is again similar to what we have done with Standard Events. Go to the Events Manager and click on the specific Custom Events, then click on View Details. Here you can see what event parameters were sent is and on which URLs the Custom Event has fired.
14. Are the right Object Properties sent in with the Custom Event in the correct format?
Once again, as Custom Events are not predefined it is more difficult to see if you are sending in the parameters and values in the right format to Facebook.
This means that you should check for example if you are sending in a value parameter is the value formatted in a number format. Vice versa, if you want to send in a parameter in a text or string format, make sure no numbers are sent in this case.
This is important as you might want to create Custom Conversions from these Custom Events and you would use the value parameter to calculate some kind of return from ad spend from it.
15. Are there any user actions not tracked on the website?
If there is a valuable user action on your website that you would consider either a macro or micro-conversion but you cannot see it under the overview tab of the Facebook Pixel you are auditing this means that you could create a Facebook Custom Event from that user action.
List out all of these user actions and also include the list of parameters you think that should be sent in with the specific Custom Events.
FB Pixel Custom Conversions Audit
If you have Custom Events or your Standard Events are not set up correctly then you should definitely also check what Custom Conversions are set up right now and if yes they are set up correctly
16. Are there Custom Conversions set up with this Facebook Pixel?
First, you can check if there are any Custom Conversions set up right now by going to the Custom Conversion section of Facebook Events Manager. https://business.facebook.com/events_manager2/custom_conversions/
If you have at least one Custom Conversion set up, you can see the list of all the Custom Conversions. First, you can check if the Custom Conversion is active and if it is getting any hits.
Just like with Pixel Events, you can click on a Custom Conversion to get more details about it and see the description, the rule and the value set up for the particular Custom Conversion.
17. Are there any issues with the implementation of the Custom Conversions?
As Custom Conversions can only be set up within Facebook Events Manager, you can’t really create Custom Conversions that have some serious implementation errors that would prevent Facebook from tracking the Custom Conversion.
However, you should still check if it makes sense from a business sense the way how the Custom Conversions are set up. Are they firing on the right URLs, is a value parameter set up and does it make sense? Etc.
Other Technical Facebook Ads settings
18. Is Facebook Advanced Matching enabled for the Facebook Pixel?
You should either turn on Automatic Advanced Matching in the Events Manager of your Facebook BM or set up Manual Advanced Matching in order to send in user data that Facebook can use to match it with its internal database.
When you enable automatic or manual Advanced Matching (or preferably both, as you don’t have to worry about duplicated user data) then Facebook will be able to not only rely on Facebook Pixel but also on user data you sent via Facebook Advanced Matching to attribute conversion data to Facebook ad campaigns more accurately.
If you want to learn more about Facebook Advanced Matching, check out this articles:
- Facebook Advanced Matching Explained
19. What data are sent in with Facebook Advanced Matching?
Facebook now allows advertisers to send in 7 types of user data to the Facebook Advanced Matching algorithm. As part of this Technical Facebook audit, you should also check if you are sending in all of them that makes sense for you. Here are all the user data that you can send in currency with Facebook Advanced Matching:
- City, State, ZIP Code and Country
- First and Last Name
- Phone Number
- Date of Birth
- External ID
19. Are you using UTM parameters for your Facebook ads and organic posts consistently?
Using UTM parameters to tag your Facebook ad campaigns is not directly relevant to Facebook Ads reporting as Facebook has its own ads reporting view.
However, when you want to further analyze your Facebook ad campaigns’ performance in Google Analytics or in any other kind of analytics software, having consistent UTM tagging of your Facebook campaigns will make it easier for you to analyze the campaigns.
To see how to use the right UTM tags for your Facebook ad campaign, check out this article:
- Facebook UTM parameters guide
20. Are the right Open Graph meta tags sent into Facebook?
The Open Graph meta tags are useful for two main reasons. When users share your post or product page on Facebook, Facebook will be able to share.
To check if you are sending in the right information with the Open Graph Meta Tags, you can use Facebook own debugger tool. Just click on this link, and paste the URL you want to check:
Once you clicked on the ‘Debug’ button, Facebook will list out all the
21. Are other microdata tags sending in the right information?
Besides The Open Graph meta tags, you can also use other methods to send in valuable information about the Facebook pages. These are called microdata.
Microdata is the structured markup data used to indicate key information about the items on your website, such as names, descriptions and prices. Currently, Facebook supports the OpenGraph (explained above), JSON-LD and Schema.org microdata tags.
You can use this microdata debugger to see with which of these methods you user currently to send in microdata to Facebook and what microdata you send in to Facebook.
Why should you audit and always improve/maintain your FB Pixel implementation?
Having a correct Facebook Pixel installation where all the relevant Standard and Custom Events are set up correctly is crucial for running successful advertising:
- Facebook will use need Standard Events (or Custom Conversions) to optimize for in conversion campaigns
- Create Website Custom Audiences that can be used for running retargeting campaigns for
- Also use Custom Audiences to create Lookalike Audiences
- Use the Conversion event data (like ROAS data) to optimize your FB ads campaigns manually
A reminder: here you can get the Facebook Pixel Audit Spreadsheet: