Apple iOS Update and Facebook Advertising in 2021

phone update

Apple iOS Update and Facebook Advertising in 2021.

The latest Apple iOS update, privacy is a key topic. Through push notifications, all users will be given a choice to either ‘allow’ or ‘opt out of tracking’ from apps they use. With many ads served through the app on iPhones and iPads, it is essential advertisers follow a number of steps.

In this blog we tackle what visitor attractions need to do to continue advertising on Facebook with the iOS update. In the UK, it is estimated that half of all smartphone users have an iPhone. Android phones, are not impacted by this update.

What does the push notification look like?

Users will receive a notification that looks like the below. It will impact the way Facebook and Instagram advertising works.

Facebook pop up

What could the impact be?

We could see four potential impacts for Facebook and Instagram advertisers.

  • You will see a drop in the number of trackable conversions which will increase your perceived cost per acquisition costs. The conversions will still happen but you won’t be able to measure all of them. 
  • Everyone who opts into tracking will still be added to your abandoned cart and remarketing lists, however, those who have opted out of tracking won’t. It means these lists will become a little smaller needing the ad spend to be diverted to other Facebook/Instagram audiences. It could mean you need to spend slightly more on digital advertising.
  • An added complication is that in the past, Facebook/Instagram has enabled conversions to be tracked up to 28 days from someone clicking on your ad.  Facebook/Instagram have dropped this to 7 days.
  • Another potential problem could be that you might not be able to tell Facebook to optimise the campaign for conversions. Facebook can only do this once it has enough data to make algorithmic decisions. If not enough data is being tracked, you’ll have to opt for other optimisation. For example, engagements, web clicks or reach.

Until we see how many opt out we won’t know for sure but it’s important to have contingency plans to make the most of what you can do. At Agility we can benchmark results from across all our clients.

What you need to do

Your Facebook Business Manager is where you book/place all your advertising and to minimise the impact on Facebook advertising, there are two things you must do.

Domain Verification:

Facebook wants you to prove your Business Manager owns your domain/s. At the moment you could theoretically spend money to drive traffic to any website. This requires adding a bit of code onto your website to prove ownership. This should be done for all domains you own and advertise to.

A Limit of 8 Tracking Events per Domain:

An ‘event’ in Facebook’s eyes is a measurable action you can track using the Facebook advertising pixel. In the past there has never been a limit on the number of tracking ‘events’ but Facebook have now put a limit of 8. If you are using more than 8, your ads will be paused.   

For anyone who clicks on a Facebook/Instagram ad in an app on an iOS device but has opted out of tracking, you will only be able to measure one tracking event. You can tell Facebook which event you would like them to measure by ranking the 8 events in priority. They will then record the highest ranking available. For example, your first event could be ‘purchase’, your second could be ‘added to cart’ and your third could be ‘click book now’ etc.  

Will it impact other advertising on Apps?

It it likely this will impact advertising on other apps, e.g. YouTube, however Google have said they will no longer track the information that comes under the Apple update so they will not need to display the new privacy notification. How this will effect advertising with Google apps is yet to be seen.

It will also impact the ability to track users of your own app, if you have one.

Have any further questions? If you need any help with your zoo, theme park or farm attraction online advertising. Please email us at

This blog was written by Liz Dimes, Online Manager at Agility Marketing, a boutique marketing agency specialising in Digital Marketing for Visitor Attractions.

With the same budget as the previous year, Agility have really taken our Digital Advertising to the next level. In fact, appointing Agility was the best decision we made for the business in 2019.

Chris Baily | Tulleys Farm