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Tom Randall, Digital Marketing and Paid-Ads Specialist
Tom Randall / Friday, 2nd July 2021

Apple’s latest update – what’s changed and what it means for your ads

You’ve probably heard a lot about Apple’s latest update. While previously the big news included bug updates and new emojis to enjoy, iOS 14.5 has been in the news for a different reason entirely – one that will shake up the advertising world.

As part of Apple’s latest iOS 14.5 update, there have been changes in how apps can track users and the levels of privacy available. In short, this is to give users more control over the data they share with businesses.

The change now alerts iPhone users that certain apps would like to track their data to give them a more personalised experience; they have the choice to ask the app not to track. This has the potential to change the way we advertise, and it hasn’t gone unnoticed. Facebook has been the biggest objectors to the change, however, the tech giant has gone ahead with its plan.

 

What does this mean for advertisers? 

In essence, it means that the majority of businesses that rely on advertising and tracking will need to adjust the way in which they advertise to potential customers. We’ve broken down some of the changes that you need to be aware of.

 

Retargeting and lookalike audiences will decrease

Due to the fact that iOS created a limitation on the number of trackable website conversions, retargeting and lookalike audiences will also decrease, meaning that advertisers will instead need to consider a broader approach.

 

Less ad personalisation

Similarly, to the above, ad personalisation will also decrease, particularly if people ask for the apps not to track them. This can make specific ads more difficult; however, it’s not impossible – we’ll get to some solutions in a minute.

 

Fewer conversions/sales will be tracked

While not being able to see as many conversions or sales is frustrating, it is worth noting that this does not necessarily mean that there will be fewer conversions/sales completed overall. Instead, we will simply lack the level of data for analysis that we’re used to.

 

Limited demographic reporting, i.e. age, gender.

Again, while this is frustrating when it comes to reviewing data, it doesn’t mean that your product won’t be seen by your target audience, but it might mean you need to review your goals and tweak your processes.

 

So, what can you do about it? 

Thankfully, there are some things you can do to minimise the impact that these changes will have on your ads. Here’s our checklist: 

  • Configure events to your domain - don’t forget you can only configure up to 8 unique conversion events per website domain, and they need to be in priority order (i.e. 1. Purchase, 2. Add to cart, 3. View Product etc.).

  • Verify your website domain - this allows the owner to configure the most relevant events. 

  • Set up 7-day click attribution - 7-day click-through will become the default. Facebook used to be able to track users who had seen or clicked on an ad from 1 day up to 28 days. Conversions will now only be tracked if a purchase is made within 7 days of clicking an ad or 1 day of viewing.

  • Set up the conversion API for more accurate tracking. The conversion API tracks users from the server rather than from cookies being placed on users’ browsers.

 

Still, feel unsure about what to do or how you can still make the most of your ads despite the change? Get in touch with our team today, and we’ll be happy to chat.

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