How to SAFELY replace your Facebook Pixel with a NEW one

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“How can I SAFELY migrate to a new Facebook Pixel?”

I get this question quite often, so I decided to publish this small guide instead of e-mailing the answer every single time. 

Migrating from an old to a new Facebook Pixel is not complicated if you have a good plan. 

The biggest mistake you can do: replace the old pixel with the new one without any additional steps. This will break everything and ruin your Facebook ads just like that.

There are TWO things you need to keep in mind:

  1. The NEW Facebook Pixel has ZERO data. 
  2. The pixel data is available for 180 DAYS.

You need to TRAIN your new pixel for 180 days, re-create Custom Audiences and Custom Conversions, add it to your Product Catalogs, replicate Pixel Events, and use it for your ads at the right moment.

Create a NEW Facebook Pixel

Inside your Facebook Business Manager, go to Events Manager and click on Add New Data Source. Follow the steps until your new pixel is created.

Install the NEW pixel on your website

I am going to use PixelYourSite Pro for this task because it supports multiple pixels.

Copy your NEW pixel ID, open PixelYourSite Dashboard, click on the “Add Extra Facebook Pixel ID” button and paste the ID. Save the new settings.

Don’t delete the old pixel!

Train your NEW pixel

This is the key part o your migration plan, and it can take up to 180 days.

Custom Audiences

If you’ve run Facebook Ads for a decent amount of time, chances are that you already have several Custom Audiences. You will need to replicate them using the new Facebook Pixel.

Tip: replicate only those audiences that you need.

Here’s a list of Custom Audiences that you might find useful:

  • Purchase Event 180 days – If you sell online, this is your most important Custom Audience.
  • Website Visitors 180 days.
  • Product visits (ViewContent) 180 days. You might need some other intervals, like 14 or 30 days, depending on your strategy.

Other audiences you should consider are direct traffic (GeneralEvent + the traffic source parameter), people that searched on your website (the Search event), embedded video views (the WatchVideo Event) and clicks on key links (the ClickEvent).

Lookalikes Audiences

Replicate your most useful Lookalikes Audiences.

What are Lookalikes? A Lookalike Audience is a way to reach new people who are likely to be interested in your business because they’re similar to your best existing customers.

If you run an e-commerce business, your most powerful Lookalikes will be based on the Purchase Event Custom Audiences 180 days (your clients).

If you don’t have enough purchases in your desired location, you can use AddToCart or even ViewContent Custom Audiences.

Custom Conversions

If you use any Custom Conversion, replicate them for the new pixel.

Connect the new pixel to your Product Catalogs

Go inside your Business Account, click on the top menu, and open Product Catalogs. Click on the catalog’s link and select “Events Data Sources” from the left-side menu.

Enable the new pixel and click Save.

This is a crucial step if you run or plan to run Dynamic Product Ads, so make sure you don’t skip it.

Replicate your Facebook Pixel Events

The new pixel should send the same events and the same parameters as the old one.

If you use the PixelYourSite plugin you are all set, because it sends all the existing events to every installed pixel.

Update your Ads Campaigns

Your existing campaigns are optimized and tracked by the old pixel and they target your old Custom Audiences or Lookalikes. 

There are two things you will need to change:

  1. The pixel that tracks your ads.
  2. Your targeted audiences. 

Changing the pixel that tracks your ads

For Catalog Sales campaigns that use “Retarget ads to people who interacted with your products on and off Facebook.” you must change the pixel AFTER the number of days your ads are configured to go back.

For all your other ads you can change the pixel right away.

How to change the pixel for existing ads

Open your Ads Manager and select all the campaigns you want to change. Click “Edit”, go on “Ads” and scroll down until you find the Tracking section. Select the NEW pixel and click Publish.

New ads tracking

Your new ads can be tracked by the new pixel right away.

Your targeted audiences

You can safely replace the old audiences AFTER the interval they are configured is consumed. So a Custom Audiences for the Purchase Event in the last 180 days can be replaced after 180 days.

Shortcut: You can edit your ads and add the new Custom Audiences along with the old ones. The same trick can be applied to new ads.

Delete the old pixel after 180 days

It is safe to delete the old pixel 180 days AFTER you installed the new one on your website. By then, the new pixel has all the possible data tracked.

Tricks

You can RENAME your old and new pixels to make sure you remember what you need to do.

How to RENAME your pixel

Open your Business Manager top menu, click on Pixels and click on the pixel you want to rename.

The end result can be something like this:

Conclusion

Replacing your Facebook Pixel is not complicated, but you’ll need a plan and some discipline:

  • Install the new pixel along with the old one.
  • TRAIN your new pixel: replicate Custom Audiences, Lookalikes, Custom Conversions, Pixel Events.
  • Connect the new pixel to your Product Catalogs.
  • Track your ads using the new pixel.
  • Add the new Custom Audiences or Lookalikes to your targeting.
  • Remove the old pixel after 180 days.

Important Q&A

Can I replace my Facebook Pixel?

Yes, you can replace your Facebook Pixel with a new one. Remeber it can take up to 180 days for the new pixel to work as expected.

Will my new Facebook Pixel have all the data from the old pixel?

No, your new Facebook will have NO data at all. That’s why you need to TRAIN YOUR NEW PIXEL.

How can I “TRAIN” my new Facebook Pixel?

Replicate your existing Custom Audiences and Lookalikes.
Replicate your Custom Conversions.
Replicate your current Pixel Events.

This proces can take up to 180 days.

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2 Responses

    1. All sorts of reasons, Jamie. Sometimes you sell your business, sometimes you expand it and you restructure your pixels, sometimes you change your Facebook Account.

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