Buddy King

Account Executive

August 25, 2022

6 minute read

What Is A Tracking Pixel And How Does It Work?

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In simple terms, tracking pixels are tiny pieces of code that allow you to track visitor data on a website, such as the types of ads they click on or the products that they buy.  This data is then used to improve your marketing campaigns and make them more effective.

Tracking pixels are often used by advertisers to track the performance of their ad campaigns, as well as by website owners to track the behavior of their visitors. However, they can also be used for other purposes, such as personalization or retargeting.


What is a tracking pixel?

A tracking pixel is a graphic the size of one singular pixel on your computer screen, used for tracking user behavior on your website on a server level. They are very good at capturing useful data for the web analytics crowd, as they are fantastic web analytics tools. A tracking pixel code allows companies to track events, email opens, digital ad impressions, sales conversions, website visits, and other types of web activity.

All of this data is used to improve marketing campaigns and overall website strategy. Tracking pixels are invisible to the user and are generally harmless. However, some users may object to being tracked and consider it a privacy concern.  These concerns are typically related to third-party cookies (which you can read about here), which are soon going to be a thing of the past so there will no longer be much of an objection to the use of pixels.

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How do tracking pixels work?

When someone visits your website, the HTML code inside it is processed by their browser, which takes the link and displays the hidden picture on your screen. This event is logged and recorded in server log files. Using this approach, different data about the visitor may be transmitted such as whether the visitor is using a mobile device, or if the visitor has been to your website in the past.

Tracking pixels are used for a variety of reasons, such as marketing or tracking website traffic. Marketers often use tracking pixels to track how many people have clicked on a specific link or advertisement, also known as a ad tracking pixel. This data can then be used to help improve future campaigns.

Website owners also use tracking pixels to track how many people are visiting their site and where they are coming from. This information can help identify which pages are popular and which ones need improvement. Additionally, tracking pixels can be used to determine how effective a particular marketing campaign has been.

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What have we learned?

All in all, tracking pixels are tiny pieces of code that allow you to track visitor data on a website, such as the types of ads they click on or the products that they buy. This data is then used to improve your marketing campaigns and make them more effective.  

With the use of tracking pixels, marketers know which of their marketing campaigns are working and how.  They also know which of their products get the most attention, what the conversion rate on their site is, and the typical customer behavior on their site.  This is all extremely helpful data for formulating a winning advertising strategy, and an overall good customer experience.

Cometly is a tracking software with an extremely advanced tracking pixel, that will allow advertisers to know exactly which ads are driving conversions from Facebook.  Learn more about our advanced Comet Pixel.

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