Marketing in a Cookie-Free World

  • This year the world of digital marketing has undergone a decisive change as Google announced its intention to phase out the use of third-party cookies over the next two years.
  • Raman Mittal, Co-Founder and Marketing Director, TO THE NEW shares some tips for agencies and advertisers on how to operate in a cookie-free world.
  • It explains how digital marketing will work in the future, as personalization today relies heavily on third-party cookies.

In January 2021, the world of digital marketing underwent a decisive change when Google announced its intention to phase out the use of third-party cookies over the next two years.

Other major web browsers will also phase out support for third-party cookies during this time. This change will bring about a fundamental shift in the way digital marketing will work in the future, as personalization today relies heavily on third-party cookies.

Cookies and their importance today

Cookies are codes deposited by a website on the browser of its visitor. It provides unique identification with a user ID and captures vital identifiable information and analytical data such as language preferences, login information, time spent on page, cart activity, etc. cookies belong to companies other than the website domain.

First-party and third-party cookies help deliver personalized experiences by helping marketers deliver relevant and engaging content to their website visitors. These cookies help to build a deep understanding of the visitor to be hyper-targeted with better advertising and to measure the performance of those advertisements.

However, data privacy is a definite drawback to the use of third-party cookies. Visitors have no idea what organizations are collecting their data other than the organization they own or the website they are visiting. According to a Dentsu report, 91% of consumers are concerned about the amount of data businesses can collect about them, and 42% have taken steps to reduce the amount of data they share online. These numbers are a case at this point.

What will be the effect of stopping third-party cookies?

With the immediate effect at the expiration of the specified two years, markets could see a significant decrease in third party audience, collected through third party cookies. Therefore, marketers will have to go back to the drawing boards to find effective new strategies for targeting their visitors and finding new ways to aggregate audience data. This move by Google and other web browsers is welcome for the visitor and consumers. It will provide assurance of data security, as users will know which organization is capturing their behavioral data and ensure that no unwanted third party organizations are monitoring their activity.

How should companies deal with this change?

There is plenty of time for businesses to develop new strategies to collect data from visitors and continue to deliver personalized experiences.

  • Focus on first party data collection: First party cookies are stored on visitors’ browsers by the websites they visit and are owned by the website owner. They help collect critical analytical data, language preferences and help provide a good overall user experience. Businesses need to strategically invest in capacity building to accurately and deeply capture first party data. Companies will need to be the first to make the most of those two years and ensure that their first-party cookies are mature enough to capture key data points, execute all ID-based solutions and ultimately increase their value. for life.
  • Explore Second Party Relationships: While this is common practice among companies in co-related fields, sharing second party data can be of real benefit to all parties involved. Second-party data is the first-party data of another company that is shared in a contractual partnership between them. For example, airlines share first-party cookies with hotel chains, but they don’t share this data with other companies. Such symbiotic relationships could become increasingly important to businesses with substantial audience overlap in the near future.
  • Contextual Targeting: Behavioral targeting aims to collect data about a visitor’s behavior and ensures that the ad is relevant to them while primarily ignoring the context next to which the ad appears. Marketers need to evolve this approach and shift to contextual targeting that targets a visitor based on the content of the page the ad appears on. As the possibilities of delivering personalized advertising to audiences shrink, marketers need to get back to basics and focus on contextual targeting to get their message out to the right audience.


As discussions about the right to privacy intensify, it becomes increasingly important for marketers to find ways to target their audiences in a way that respects their privacy.

The digital community needs to collaborate and take this opportunity to develop better processes and technologies to create personalized targeting while building an audience’s trust in a business.


About Author

Comments are closed.