Moving parallel to the Covid-19 crisis has predicted the death of third-party cookies in coming years. As we prepare to bid farewell to third party cookies by the end of 2023, marketers turn to other ways of tracking, advertising and implementing new solutions. While the “death” of third-party cookies by blocking cookies paves the way for new challenges, it is also an opportunity for improvement.

But before panicking, you must understand why marketer’s track ads in the first place. Using cookies, marketing experts measure performance, plan the future course of actions and report influences on the metrics.

With cookies, a user’s specific online behaviour is trackable, including what they click on, search history or shopping preferences. Additionally, this allows a large degree of specificity in analytics and helps in targeting consumers individually.

What are third-party cookies?

With cookies, a user’s specific online behaviour is trackable, including what they click on, search history or shopping preferences. Additionally, this allows a large degree of specificity in analytics and helps in targeting consumers individually.

In simple words, 3rd party cookies can be described as activities of an Internet user that a website uses to track and use to make sure that the user doesn’t need to fill information again and again. A major objective to enable third party cookies is to provide users with a better and personalized experience.

Here, it is necessary to understand that these third-party cookies aren’t placed by a website that a user is visiting. Usually, the most common uses of these cookies are to retarget users and show them ads related to their search. It means third-party cookies are different from first-party cookies that are hosted by the host website. First-party cookies are considered good because they store information to save users from entering the same information multiple times. A common example is a product added to a shopping cart. On the other hand, third-party cookies are for cross-site tracking and advertising purposes.

cookies on a website

How will the “Third-party Cookieless Future” affect your website? 

Cookies on a website; How do they affect you?

The departure of third-party cookies doesn’t put an end to measurement of cookies in a browser. It just means what and how we measure is going to change. Let’s dig deeper towards the bottom of the funnel: marketers will own website audiences and capture them through built-in capabilities. From there, website owners can drive other actions- eCommerce navigation, location visits and more. Access to your audiences helps you make decisions further up the sales funnel without cookies.

With a push towards loyalty and retention, brands are increasingly moving to more knowledgeable positions about who they target. The leverage of first-party data helps better target users with more functional customization in their campaigns and promotions to drive conversions. If 3rd party cookies vanished today, retailers would be the hardest hit. Still, as marketers hedge deeper into customer data, it is safe to say that we will have a firm position in the post-cookie world.

How does this impact user data privacy? 

Amid the scramble about the third-party cookies (3P), questions popping up are-

  • Does it increase fraud?
  • Does it impair the ability to target an audience? and so on.

While there’s tremendous misinformation swirling about workarounds like the rise of Ad Frauds, targeting FLoC’s of consumers, third party cookies reach users with ads and track customer purchase conversion safely.

The moves by Google and Apple to increase the privacy of consumers after years of

  • arbitrary data collection by ad tech companies,
  • breaching consumers’ privacy without their knowledge and consent.

However, the increase in privacy regulations is relative as Google still has users who constantly sign up for free services like Gmail, YouTube, etc.

What happens to the Campaign Effectiveness of your website? 

Marketers have gone too far down the rabbit hole of targeting users through digital advertising. Therefore, it becomes important without saying that third-party cookies could impact your website and its CMP (Content Management Platform) substantially. Marketers over target users and under-spend in basic brand building, exposing new potential customers to their brand and product.

Let’s understand with an example. Say a pharmaceutical company is trying to target the 1% high-prescribers( healthcare workers or doctors) for their particular drug. But, in that case, the marketers are neglecting the 99% of doctors who are “low-to-no-prescribers”.

If the pharma advertisers focused again on their digital ad spending to include more brand building and less targeting, they could increase conversions.

As long as website owners can see “exposed” vs “not-exposed” users exhibiting higher rates of purchases or business outcomes, the digital outcomes are effective. Even performance marketers don’t need to know who downloaded their applications. Instead, they need to know the number of users exposed to ads that ended up installing their app.

Thereby, now you know that 3P cookies or Apple device identifiers won’t make campaigns less effective or less measurable.

Wrapping Up 

The changes in the new digital identity are all set to break barriers from third-party cookies as it’s no longer the numbers game. Instead, ad retargeting relies on getting specific ads that lead to varying degrees of success. So what replaces third-party cookies changes the dynamic of how brands target customers and what makes your online campaign an effective marketing initiative.

If 2021 was a year of marketing prophecies, 2022 is a year of action. With changes come opportunities for businesses to evolve their old approaches. If these changes live up to the expectations, the digital transformation promises a bright future for marketers, website owners, and users.

To know more about a Post 3P Cookies world, stay tuned!