The online marketing industry is currently discussing Google’s decision to no longer allow third-party cookies in the Chrome browser from 2023. With this, Google will change tracking – and the way companies advertise online and distribute personalized content.
Third-party cookies mark users of a website and track their behavior across multiple pages. They are set by third parties, not by the actual website the user is on. They are often advertisers who want to track how users who see their ads move online. Data on dwell time, page views or even the use of links provide a comprehensive picture of the interests of the people tracked. This allows for the creation of more or less accurate user profiles, which are often passed on to external providers for the purpose of placing personalized advertising.
Third-party cookies are abolished
This procedure and especially the transfer of data to third parties has long been criticized by data protectionists. The European Court of Justice and the GDPR have already strongly regulated the use of third-party cookies. Now Google is taking action – and following Apple’s and Mozilla’s lead. In the Safari and Firefox browsers, the use of third-party cookies has been prevented for quite some time. For users, this is positive news. Their data will now only be tracked if they explicitly agree to the use of third-party cookies or cookies for advertising purposes.
For marketers and advertisers, the elimination of third-party cookies does not mean the end of the world. Because the data they really need in order to get to know their customers and their needs can be obtained directly and at first hand.
Use first-party data correctly
All data that companies collect via their own channels and store on their own servers belongs to them and is freely available to them. This so-called first-party data includes product and page views, search queries, form submissions, demographic information, and context and CRM data. It also includes information collected offline. What’s important:
- Clean opt-in management
The collection of first-party data is also subject to strict data protection guidelines. Explicit user consent is required before information can be stored and processed, and this consent can be revoked at any time. Systematic opt-in management is a basic requirement. Creating transparency about the collection and use of personal data is just as important as the full and legally compliant verifiability of the consent received. Whether with checkboxes, single or double opt-in: the better this process is managed, the higher the consent rates.
- Clean data pool
When user data from different sources is merged, quality variations in the data pool often become apparent. Different granularities have to be adjusted, duplications removed and possible data errors filtered out. The effort is worthwhile: The “cleaner” the data pool, the better the view of the customer and the more targeted the customer approach. Reliable information about the customer’s wishes and needs ultimately allows reliable conclusions to be drawn about his future buying behavior.
Many companies are unaware of how valuable the treasure they have in the form of first-party data actually is. Intelligent software solutions, such as those developed by Adtelligence, help to refine and make optimum use of the company’s own data. They provide support for opt-in management as well as for the compilation, preparation, consolidation and processing of data. The use of state-of-the-art technology helps companies to identify the needs and wishes of their customers – and to respond to them.