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What is a TikTok Pixel?

Learn what a TikTok Pixel is and how you can implement it on your website to help track conversions.

Craig Dennis

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January 1, 2024

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6 minutes

What is a TikTok Pixel?.

The TikTok Pixel is a tracking snippet that can be added to your website to track user activity. These engagement signals are then sent to TikTok client-side to give TikTok insight into how users are engaging with your site for attribution and audiencing purposes.

What is the TikTok Pixel?

The TikTok Pixel is a piece of Javascript code you install on your website. With this code on your website, TikTok automatically captures user actions on your website and can track events such as adding to cart or placing an order. These events are stored in your TikTok Ads account, where they can be referenced to build custom audiences, optimize ad delivery, and inform attribution to measure campaign performance.

the steps involved showing how the TikTok pixel works

Source: About TikTok Pixel

Below is an example of the code snippet needed to be installed on your website.

<script>
!function (w, d, t) {
  w.TiktokAnalyticsObject=t;var ttq=w[t]=w[t]||[];ttq.methods=["page","track","identify","instances","debug","on","off","once","ready","alias","group","enableCookie","disableCookie"],ttq.setAndDefer=function(t,e){t[e]=function(){t.push([e].concat(Array.prototype.slice.call(arguments,0)))}};for(var i=0;i<ttq.methods.length;i++)ttq.setAndDefer(ttq,ttq.methods[i]);ttq.instance=function(t){for(var e=ttq._i[t]||[],n=0;n<ttq.methods.length;n++)ttq.setAndDefer(e,ttq.methods[n]);return e},ttq.load=function(e,n){var i="https://analytics.tiktok.com/i18n/pixel/events.js";ttq._i=ttq._i||{},ttq._i[e]=[],ttq._i[e]._u=i,ttq._t=ttq._t||{},ttq._t[e]=+new Date,ttq._o=ttq._o||{},ttq._o[e]=n||{};var o=document.createElement("script");o.type="text/javascript",o.async=!0,o.src=i+"?sdkid="+e+"&lib="+t;var a=document.getElementsByTagName("script")[0];a.parentNode.insertBefore(o,a)};

  ttq.load('XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX');
  ttq.page();
}(window, document, 'ttq');
</script>

Why use a TikTok Pixel?

Using a TikTok tracking Pixel has a range of benefits for your ad campaigns:

  • Track conversions: Installing a TikTok Pixel on your website will let you track different conversion events (such as “add to cart,” “complete payment,” and “place an order”).

  • Boost campaign optimization: The information the pixel is gathering can feed the algorithm to help optimize the bidding models.

  • Custom audiences: With the interaction signals gathered from the TikTok Pixel, signals such as signing up for your newsletter or purchasing an item, you can use this information to create a custom audience (this could be a retargeting audience where you show ads for abandon cart items or lookalike audiences where new audiences are created from similar attributes taken from a seed audience).

Another benefit of using a TikTok Pixel is that it’s easy to set up (you can either paste a section of code into your website or connect with a click of a button with the TikTok partners). The TikTok Pixel requires minimal maintenance as version releases are done automatically.

The Ultimate Guide to Paid Media Integrations

Read our whitepaper to learn why conversion APIs are replacing 3rd-party cookies.

Preview of The Ultimate Guide to Paid Media Integrations.
Preview of The Ultimate Guide to Paid Media Integrations.

How to set up a TikTok Pixel?

Get started with your TikTok Pixel by following the steps below.

Step 1: You'll need a TikTok Business account. Sign in and navigate to your TikTok Ads Manager, click Assets -> Events -> Web Events -> Manage.

selecting a web event in TikTok Ads Manager

Step 2: Click Create Pixel.

create pixel on TikTok Ads Manager

Step 3: Name your pixel, select TikTok Pixel as your connection method, and click Next.

namimg your TikTok Pixel

Step 4: Select if you want to manually install the pixel code or automatically set it up through one of the 3rd party Partner Platforms, such as Google Tag Manager, BigCommerce, or Shopify.

selecting to manuall or automatically install the TikTok Pxiel

If you choose to install the pixel code manually, you have the option to use the event builder or use custom code. The event builder will allow you to build events without needing as much technical assistance. The custom code option will need technical support to set up.

If you are using a partner platform, follow the on-screen instructions.

Step 5: Create your events depending on which option you select. You can find help for the event builder here and the custom code here. The events will be automatically created if you selected the Partner Platform.

What are TikTok Pixel events?

A TikTok Pixel event is a user's action to accomplish a specific business goal. There are 14 types of events.

  1. Add payment info
  2. Add to cart
  3. Add to wishlist
  4. Click button
  5. Complete payment
  6. Complete registration
  7. Contact
  8. Download
  9. Initiate checkout
  10. Place an order
  11. Search
  12. Submit form
  13. Subscribe
  14. View content

With the TikTok Pixel, you record what action a user has taken on your website and have it correspond to one of the 14 events. For example, someone downloading a white paper would trigger a download event.

What is a TikTok Pixel helper?

The TikTok Pixel helper is a Chrome extension that lets you test if your pixel is working, what events are set up on the page, and any parameters.

You can install it via the TikTok Pixel Helper chrome extension page.

How to uninstall TikTok Pixel?

There may be a time when you no longer need a TikTok Pixel and want to uninstall it. You can do so by following these steps:

  1. Remove the TikTok code on your website.
  2. Go to your TikTok Ads Manager and click on Assets -> Events
  3. Select where your pixel was created (Web Events or App Events)
  4. Click the three dots of the pixel and click Delete.

Note: If your pixel has had an active campaign running, you’ll not be able to delete it from the Ads Manager, but you can still remove the code from your website.

TikTok Events API

The TikTok Pixel isn’t the only way to track conversions from your website. You have the option to use the TikTok Events API. The Events API is more favorable because conversion events are still tracked even if people use ad-blockers or web browsers that block third-party tracking pixels.

Events API is a server-to-server API that lets you share visitor events directly with TikTok Events that happen on your website from users. You can read more about Events API in our Marketers Guide to TikTok Conversions article and The Definitive Guide to Conversion APIs & Web Pixels article.

Conclusion

Conversion signals are more important than ever before to run effective ad campaigns on AdTech platforms like TikTok. Implementing the TikTok pixel is the first step you can take to capture these signals, however, the most optimal solution involves the implementation of the TikTok Events API. It’s time to give your ad platforms the signals they need to operate at their fullest potential. If you want to learn about tracking conversions in TikTok we've put together a marketers guide to TikTok conversion tracking.

The Ultimate Guide to Paid Media Integrations

Read our whitepaper and learn why conversion APIs are replacing 3rd-party cookies.

  • The death of third-party cookies
  • Leveraging conversion signals to boost ROAS
  • Sending conversions events to ad platforms
Preview of The Ultimate Guide to Paid Media Integrations.
Preview of The Ultimate Guide to Paid Media Integrations.

More on the blog

  • Boost Match Rates to Conversion APIs.

    Boost Match Rates to Conversion APIs

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  • The Marketers Guide to TikTok Data Connections.

    The Marketers Guide to TikTok Data Connections

    Maximizing TikTok ROI through a best-in-class integration strategy

  • The Definitive Guide to Conversion APIs & Web Pixels.

    The Definitive Guide to Conversion APIs & Web Pixels

    Facebook, Google, Snapchat, and Tiktok are adopting conversion APIs to capture data that web pixels and cookies can no longer collect. Here's an overview on how to adopt these new server-side advertising APIs.

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