Why You Should Care About Your Facebook Ads Match Quality Score

Attribution is an ever-challenging task in digital marketing. Marketers are relentless in their quest to improve it so that leads and conversions are attributed more precisely. After all, the results impact the marketing budget, decisions, and succeeding strategies. And one of the ways that you need to look at is the Facebook event match quality. Once you implement server-side tracking, Facebook displays its score, indicating how closely the customer information it sends matches a Facebook account. Conversions API allows server-side events to send a signal to Facebook’s server as captured in the Events Manager regardless of disabled cookies and restricted tracking. However, it is not sufficient to match them to specific user accounts.

What is Facebook event match quality?

Facebook event match quality refers to the extent to which you can match the user’s identity in an event to an existing Facebook account. In other words, you want to check if that person and a specific Facebook user are the same. They can be identified by their data keys like email address, last name, and phone number. However, it remains a challenging task, considering there are already more than 2 billion active Facebook accounts. And without the customer information parameters, Facebook cannot match an event, say, an add to cart, to an action of their particular user.

Meanwhile, events in this context refer to actions performed by a site visitor across various channels, whether a website, email, or live chat. Such events include online form submissions, email clicks, pdf downloads, etc. When a user has clicked a button, does that mean they made a purchase? Or did they sign up for a newsletter? In any case, these are standard events that Facebook readily supports.

However, with a growing number of platforms, it’s no longer just tracking the events on your website. Your Martech should consider events from apps as well. Combining user events into a unified customer data can be integrated with Facebook through server-side tracking. It helps target ads based on the stage of the customer journey. And it is important to determine how effective your data is by knowing its Facebook event match quality score.

Why your score matters

Before Facebook event match quality, Facebook relied on cookies to associate events with users. They used two primary cookies, _fbc or _fbp, which contained the exact Facebook user ID. Right off the bat, you can easily match events to users. However, they have their limitations. One is they couldn’t account for those with conversions API, which uses its server when sending events instead of a browser. The second is that the cookie method only works for signed-in users on the same browser. As you may well know, this practice is not observed, given that many users toggle across multiple browsers. Third, users can block cookies since iOS 14.5 update.

A high Facebook event match quality score indicates your customer information from an event matches effectively with your Facebook account. As such, you can attribute conversions to an ad click. Common events such as view content or page view yield a very low score as any web visitor typically triggers them. If the user is not signed in to their account, you cannot see useful data such as the name, email address, or postal address. It is what makes data from a purchase event score highly. More often than not, the user would have provided their actual contact information, which is essentially gold for marketers.

How Facebook event match quality is scored

A Facebook event match quality score is measured up to 10, which means that all customer information parameters are sent 100 percent of the time. Realistically, though, a score of 6 is considered a successful matching of events to Facebook accounts. Common events based on IP address, user agent, and cookies will usually yield a score between 3 and 4.

Here are the different data that are sent to Facebook.

1. Hashed data – Data is transformed from its original string into a much shorter key. It includes anything that points to a user’s personal details, such as first name and last name, email, phone, birth date, and geographic address.

2. Unhashed data – includes Facebook user ID, user agent, IP address, browser ID (fbp), click ID (FBC).

The Facebook pixel parameters contain a unique identifier using first-party cookies. It begins with FB followed by several numbers that combine the subdomain index, creation time in Unix timestamp and milliseconds, and a random digit. On the other hand, fbc is set off when the user is led to your website by a Facebook ad. The destination URL will have fbclid as its click identifier.

Facebook considers three things when calculating your event match quality score: the customer information parameters, the integrity of this information, and the event match percentage. The three most important customer information are Facebook user ID, email address, and phone number. These details are typically provided in deep funnel events like checking out an online cart or newsletter signup.

You can view your Facebook event match quality score, updated daily, by going to Facebook Business Manager – Events Manager – Pixel.

Tips that help raise your Facebook event match quality score

1) Apply more customer information parameters to more events. However, make sure that you are applying the same set of parameters to the browser side and the server-side.

2) Create a custom subdomain in your conversions API setup to enable the transfer of cookies from third-party to first-party.

3) Label actions to be tracked properly using a data layer containing all user information to enhance the quality of all events.

4) Use a data tag to store customer data between web pages. It will facilitate data extraction of a user’s email, for example, to be used in matching a Facebook user.

5) Check any error in your server events or Facebook pixels as it can pull your event match quality score down.

Final word

Ultimately, the Facebook event match quality score puts all those marketing efforts in their proper place with a more precise ad attribution. But remember that you should respect the user’s privacy by handling personal data with utmost security through hashing. You. should also utilize available server tracking technologies to get as much user data as possible to increase your Facebook event match quality score to have more targeted ads and maximized ROI.