Party’s Over: Third-Party Cookies Are On The Way Out
Everybody loves cookies, but no one loves cookies as much as marketers do.
To most, cookies on a browser are little more than a pop-up you have to dismiss when visiting a new site, usually by accepting them. Then the pop-up goes away, and the website uses the cookie it placed on your browser to recognize your device on future visits. Simple right?
From a marketing standpoint, the impact of cookies is much different and can play a crucial role in future marketing strategies and campaigns. Those little pieces of code give marketers valuable insight into what websites their visitors navigate to and from, giving a more complete picture of the user. If you’re able to understand what’s bringing them in and where they’re going afterward, you’re able to market to those specific audiences better. You can understand their habits, and adjust specific campaigns.
While first-party cookies are pieces of code that are stored in the domain you’re currently visiting (these cookies remember site-specific preferences and do things like keep your shopping cart intact if you navigate away from an online store and come back), third-party cookies are stored under a separate domain than the one you’re currently visiting, and they track users between websites. These cookies are why you see ads for specific Amazon products on sites that aren’t Amazon.
Why bring this up? Cookies have been around for a while, after all. You probably had some inkling as to how they work, and you’ve experienced the cross-advertising that can result from their use, so how is it relevant to your future marketing efforts?
Bye Bye, Third-Party Cookies!
That’s right! Those little bits of code that are used to market different products and services across multiple sites are being eliminated by Google. Your breadcrumb trail of data will soon come to an end in an effort by Google to appease growing user demands for more privacy, transparency, and control over their own data.
This wasn’t welcome news to many marketers who utilize third-party cookies, with the Association of National Advertisers going as far as to say that this decision could disrupt the advertising industry as a whole. Billions of dollars are in flux, and future strategies are upended. It’s easy to see why this was such big news.
The Future Without Cookies
So where does marketing go from here? Third-party cookies going away will make targeted ads difficult and make it harder for websites to be monetized. This means that there will be a swing towards other methods of monetization, such as subscriptions, and paywalls. So there are still ways to get money from your site, but where does that leave online advertising? Don’t you need cookies for it to be viable?
Not necessarily! Zero-party data is still an option. This is data that is volunteered by users, so there won’t be any privacy concerns. Quizzes, user surveys, and preferences are all ways you can collect this data, and they can give you a lot of insight into that particular consumer and their habits. You just need to be creative and make these surveys and data collection pages enticing to a visitor. Offer a discount if they answer a few simple questions. Use something like an ROI calculator to get a better grasp of customer budgets and needs. There can be a good reason behind each data point, you just need to find it!
Email Is More Important Than Ever
With third-party cookies being phased out, your email marketing game is going to be more important than ever. Gathering email addresses, building lists, and customized journeys are going to be key when it comes to getting your message to the right people. If you’re smart, you’re already investing in exactly this! You’ve already been building your lists, you’ve done proper testing to see which subject lines and preheaders resonate the most, and you’ve thoroughly researched both your competitors and your target demographic. You’re savvy, and you’re prepared!
To sum up, it will be harder for you to market without third-party cookies, but not impossible! These changes are coming, and all you can do is prepare as best you can. It’s a significant change, but that’s always been the nature of progress. The key is beginning the transition now so that when third-party cookies are finally phased out, you’re not left scrambling.
Without a seasoned marketing team, the transition is going to be hard. Realigning your entire marketing process is a huge undertaking, and if you’re going to start dabbling in strategies you’re unfamiliar with, it could result in a rocky (and costly) start.
That’s exactly what SalesLabX is here for: to make these transitions as painless as possible by providing a marketing team that operates like an in-house team that’s been with you since the beginning. Schedule your demo ASAP so we can get you ready for any upcoming changes in the world of marketing!