Insights

21st February 2020

Third-party cookies are dead. How will your online marketing survive?

Within the next 2 years, third party cookies will be a thing of the past

Third party cookies are cookies sent from sites other than the one you’re visiting, which are generated by advertisers to help with user behaviour tracking and online advertising. Web browsers such as Firefox and Safari already block third party cookies by default but, by 2022, Google plans to also phase out these cookies entirely from the Chrome browser. Despite Chrome not being the first browser to phase out third party cookies, it is likely to have the largest impact, with Chrome controlling a 64% share of the browser market.

How will phasing out third party cookies affect me?

As a web user, Google Chrome no longer supporting third party cookies will help ensure that cookies commonly used by advertisers to gather information about you doesn’t undermine your privacy. As an advertiser, it’s not yet entirely clear how this Google update might impact the information you can collect in order to help deliver better targeted ads. It is clear, however, that Google are working on something to help support users’ privacy whilst still enabling advertisers to make the most of their investments. Google have stated that they will work with publishers, developers and advertisers in order to help build “a more trustworthy and sustainable web together“.

What happens next?

Google has already taken steps to increase privacy on the web, with the introduction of Privacy Sandbox. The Privacy Sandbox has been developed with the aim of making the web more private and secure, whilst also supporting publishers. In January 2020, Google announced that they are, “confident that with continued iteration and feedback, privacy-preserving and open-standard mechanisms like the Privacy Sandbox can sustain a healthy, ad-supported web in a way that will render third-party cookies obsolete”.

What is abundantly clear is that Google doesn’t intend to remove third party cookies without replacing them with a more privacy friendly alternative. Whilst other browsers have done just that, Google recognises that simply blocking these cookies has unintended, negative consequences for both users and the web. So how are they going to replace them? As the Privacy Sandbox is further developed and third party cookies become redundant, we’ll be able to get a much clearer picture of the tracking methods that are to replace these outdated cookies.

To stay in the loop on Google’s resolution to the removal of third party cookies and for the latest news on Search Engine Marketing, subscribe to the Varn newsletter using the Sign Up button below. Alternatively, if you have any questions on how to get the most from your online advertising, get in touch with our friendly team today.

Article by: Aimee, Technical SEO Manager More articles by Aimee

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