Facebook is testing several new ways to create custom audiences. Among them, the ability to create custom audiences from store visits.
While there hasn’t even been official confirmation of the test from Facebook, it has been spotted in the wild and several publications have already reported on it. The screenshot that has been circulating comes courtesy of Moshe Isaacian, and it shows store visits as a new option in the custom audiences creation wizard.
Despite visual confirmation, a Facebook spokesperson provided little information on the feature, saying that the company is “always exploring new ways to help marketers drive offline value from their ads,” but that there was “nothing new to announce at this time.”
Just over a year ago, Facebook launched three ad products for retailers with physical locations – store locator, store visits, and the offline conversions API. It also offers advertisers several other offline tracking options. Despite this, Facebook still doesn’t have a totally effective offline tracking solution for advertisers.
For example, store visits tracking is based on information from Facebook users’ location services (if they’ve been turned on), and the offline conversions tracking is mainly based on evidence from manually-uploaded sales reports.
Facebook may be making its location tracking a lot better with its free Wi-Fi hotspots feature, but still cannot effectively measure offline conversions. Facebook has tested Facebook Beacons as well, but that never became popular. Finally, it’s been recently testing a QR code feature. Perhaps it will help.