How Apple’s iOS14 Update Significantly Affect Facebook Ads? And What Can Advertisers Do?

How Apple’s iOS14 Update Significantly Affect Facebook Ads? And What Can Advertisers Do?
May 31, 2021 Venessa from theAdsBiz
iOS14 Update

Since Apple announced major product and policy changes that will affect data sharing across iOS14 update in its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June 2020, Facebook have released an article detailing the significant impact that such policy updates have on Facebook ad marketing.

Indeed, Apple’s iOS 14.5 update that was recently released on 26th April 2021 includes new ad measurement protocols – Apple’s SKAdNetwork API and Facebook’s Aggregated Event Measurement, which will affect Facebook ad campaigns and tracking for you as Advertisers.

Apple’s iOS14 updates and policy changes were announced as an effort to heighten user privacy conditions, but it does pose some limitations on Facebook advertising efforts for businesses. Here, we summarise a few noteworthy points on how the Apple iOS14 update will affect your Facebook Ads, and what you can immediately do to minimise disruptions to your Facebook Ad Campaigns.

5 Ways the Apple iOS14 Update will Affect your Facebook Ads

  1. App Advertising

‘SKAdNetwork’ API was introduced by Apple in May 2018. It is a privacy-friendly way to indicate impression and clicks to apps installs on iOS apps.

With the Apple iOS 14 update, the SKAdNetwork API will be used by Facebook for app advertising on all iOS 14 devices. This will either restrict, aggregate or delay all app event data. 

Lift measurements will be unavailable for iOS14 app install and app event campaigns, and events reporting will be delayed up to 72 hours after app installation.

  1. Mobile Web Advertising

Apple has also created another new concept, called the Private Click Measurement (PCM) protocol for web attribution, which is to measure the effectiveness of in-app ad clicks that leads to web, while maintaining data privacy.

As this concept is introduced to cater to concerns for heightened user privacy, the nature and amount of data that businesses and platforms can access to will be strongly disrupted. User tracking in different geographical locations will also be a challenge. Such purchases (if successful) would not be properly tracked.

  1. Targeting and Optimisation

With the iOS 14.5 update, an advertiser can only configure up to a maximum of eight unique conversion events per website domain for optimisation. Means as an advertiser, you will need to prioritise the eight events that are most crucial to target and optimise.

This is negative news for small-scale advertisers who do not have many data points. Furthermore, the size of retargeting audience will also shrink over time as more people update their device operating system to iOS 14.5

  1. Measurement

Besides that, as mentioned above, there will be a 72-hours delay in events reporting from iOS 14.5 users due to the Private Click Measurement protocol. As such, data measurements will be more complicated as this will contribute to under-reporting on organic and paid channels as well.

What happens if you want to run ads in this case? With less or little data on hand, running ads is not going to be the same as before. Unfortunately, you might not even see conversion event breakdowns. 

  1. Business Manager Tool Setup

With all the changes in data collection and reporting, the Facebook Business Manager will have an upgrade in design and look. 

What if you dislike the new Facebook Business Manager interface and want to remain the old interface instead? Sorry, this change in design is required as Facebook cannot have a separate interface for iOS and Android. But compared to the reporting changes, this is one of the changes that advertisers can get used to relatively easily. 

What You Should Do Now to Minimise Disruptions to Your Facebook Ad Campaigns?

  1. Verify your domains with Facebook

By verifying your domains with Facebook, it means that you are officially set up on the platform.

There are a few ways to verify your domains with Facebook. Firstly, you could add a DNS TXT entry to the DNS record and confirm that you are the owner of a particular domain. Alternatively, you can also upload a Facebook provided HTML file to your web directory. Lastly, adding meta tags to the <head> section of your domain home page is also an easy way to verify your domains.

  1. Decide which eight events that you want to track conversions for

With the new limit of of conversion events tracking in place for the iOS14.5 update, you will have to prioritise and select 8 events for conversion that you want to track.

Check out Facebook’s guide on how to decide which events to track. 

  1. Compare the 28-day to 7-day attribution relationship

Last but not least, you need to start determining the impact that the attribution window change will have on your business before Facebook removes the 28-day attribution.

With iOS14.5 update, the reporting will be changed to 7-days post click and 1-day post view. This means that you have to keep an account for the sales that happened from day 8 to day 28.

Digital Marketers and Advertisers: Prepare and Plan Ahead

As of writing in May 2021, Apple’s iOS14.5 update, SKAdNetwork API and Facebook’s Aggregated Event Measurement protocols are being rolled out across iOS devices. 

These iOS14.5 updates are going to change how Marketers and Advertisers track the performance of our clients’ Facebook ads. This might even affect how we strategise Facebook ad campaigns.

Which is why we at theAdsBiz are prepared to strategise and plan ahead, and we urge you to do the same. For more details on Apple’s iOS14.5 update, how it affects your Facebook ads, and how to prepare for it, this is a great place to start.


This article is intended to convey general information and sharing based on our industry experience. It does not constitute advice for your specific needs nor referring to any of theAdsBiz’s client specifically. All info are accurate at time of publication.