In March 2024, third-party cookies, these small but powerful digital tools that have been mainstays of online advertising, are scheduled to say goodbye to us.
If you’re thinking, “Wait, but what exactly are cookies and why should I care about their demise?” then you’re in the right place. In this article, we will analyze all of this.
It’s not the end of the world, but rather the beginning of a new era in digital marketing, full of opportunities to innovate and connect with your audience in more meaningful and respectful ways.
But, let’s start at the beginning:
What are cookies?
Cookies are like little reminders that web pages leave in your browser. Imagine them as sticky notes that a website sticks on your computer or cell phone, saying, “Hey! I remember you were here before, and these are the things you liked.” Thanks to these notes, the website can remember you and your preferences, such as keeping your session open or remembering your preferred language.
What are they used for and their importance in advertising?
Cookies are crucial in the world of digital advertising. These allow advertisers and websites to learn about your tastes and what you are interested in, based on your browsing history. This way, they can show you ads that are more relevant and closer to your interests, instead of bombarding you with advertising that tells you nothing. It’s as if a billboard on the street could instantly change to show you something you really like when you walk past it.
Types of Cookies in relation to First Party Data and Third Party Data
There are two main types of cookies: “first party” and “third party” cookies. First-party cookies are like personal journals that a website creates about you; only that site can read. Third-party cookies, however, are created by websites that you are not visiting directly, such as advertising companies that want to track your steps on different sites to get to know you better. It’s like a friend of yours telling an acquaintance what you like so that the latter can surprise you with something that interests you.
Why are Third Party Cookies disappearing?
Third-party cookies are disappearing because people are increasingly concerned about their privacy. Many don’t feel comfortable knowing that there are companies tracking them all over the web to find out what they like and don’t like. Therefore, browsers and regulations are placing limits on this practice, seeking to protect our online privacy.
Challenges we face with the disappearance of these
With the farewell to third-party cookies, the big challenge is how to continue to deliver relevant advertising without invading people’s privacy. Companies and advertisers will need to be more creative and respectful when collecting data, looking for ways to understand their audiences without tracking their every step on the web.
The Emergence of Zero Party Cookies
Unlike first-party and third-party cookies, Zero Party Data are not data collected by observation, but rather information that users voluntarily provide to brands. This includes preferences, purchase intentions, and other personal data that customers share directly to enhance their shopping or browsing experience.
This type of data is pure gold in digital marketing because it is based on trust and explicit consent. Zero Party Cookies allow us to understand what our users really want without having to “guess” through their online behavior. This is not only more respectful of their privacy but also ensures that interactions are more relevant and personalized.
Solutions to mitigate this disappearance
To adapt to this change, companies can focus more on first-party cookies and Zero Party Data collection, collecting data directly from their users with their permission. They may also explore new technologies such as machine learning to predict user interests based on less specific data. Another option is to foster more direct and genuine relationships with users by offering valuable content that encourages people to share information about their preferences voluntarily.
This change is not the end of digital marketing, but an opportunity to innovate and find more respectful and effective ways to connect with audiences. Even if third-party cookies go away, people’s desire for personalized and relevant experiences will not go away. The challenge now is how to achieve this in an ethical and transparent manner.
The Role of the CDPs in this new context
Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) appear as crucial tools at this point. CDPs are systems that unify customer data from multiple sources into a single profile . This allows companies to have a complete view of each customer, based on data collected with consent, including valuable Zero Party Data. But this will be explored in future posts…
I hope you found this content interesting
Have a good week!