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Google has started phasing out third-party cookies for a limited number of users on Google Chrome, with plans to extend this to all users by the end of 2024. For more information, you can refer to Google’s announcement

A Quick Introduction to Cookies:

  • Website cookies serve core functions such as managing shopping carts, remembering login details, and setting preferred language and location.
  • They are also instrumental in tracking users across websites and devices
  • Cookies come in two types: first-party and third-party, both of which collect personal data
  • First-party cookies are generated by the website a user is currently visiting, while third-party cookies, created by other websites and platforms, are commonly used for ad retargeting and behavioural advertising.

Cookie Apocalypse Timeline

Google’s decision is the latest in a series of measures implemented by major tech players, including Apple and Firefox, all aimed at addressing privacy concerns within the industry. Given Chrome’s significant market share of 63%, the impact of this change will be substantial.

Why Are Cookies Being Phased Out?

  • Industry changes, including GDPR legislation and the removal of third-party cookies in Safari and Firefox, have rendered third-party cookies less efficient and effective for advertisers in targeting users and tracking performance.
  • Third-party cookies have also faced scrutiny due to their ability to create detailed user profiles based on online behaviour, raising privacy concerns
  • The evolution of web usage, with users accessing websites from multiple devices, has made it challenging for third-party cookies to accurately track the complete customer journey, leading to attribution challenges and budget inefficiencies for advertisers.

What Does This Mean for You?

If you rely on third-party cookies for your digital marketing strategy, it’s essential to prepare for the impending changes. Despite Google’s communication about the forthcoming adjustments, many businesses remain unprepared for the impact phasing out of cookies will have on their marketing strategies.
These changes will affect how you track success and collect user information online, and may even impact website functionality. Preparation for this change is crucial in 2024.

How to Prepare:

  1. Stay informed: Keep up to date with Google’s communications on the subject, as more information is likely to be made available as the situation develops.
  2. Perform an audit: Audit your website cookies to understand which are present and assess any potential risks, then make necessary modifications as needed.
  3. Test: Conduct a “breakage test” by using Google Chrome’s functionality to block third-party cookies. Navigate your website with third-party cookies disabled to understand how it functions without them.
  4. Plan: Consider how you can leverage more first-party data in your marketing strategy, as this kind of data will become even more valuable in the absence of third-party cookies.

Need Some Help?

Navigating these changes may be complex, but you’re not alone. We’ll carry on sharing updates through our blog and social channels, but if you need help understanding how these changes will impact your business, our specialists have the skills and expertise to assist you.

Reach out to us today and take the first step in ensuring your website is in a good place before Google phases out third-party cookies in 2024!

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