Privacy online has been a big issue in recent years and has dominated the headlines. While Google has often been at the centre of negative privacy headlines, the search giant has also taken steps to try and show more of a commitment to user privacy. Its latest move is to begin blocking 3rd party cookie tracking on publisher sites via Google Chrome in the next 12 – 24 months. So, what kind of impact is this going to have on marketing and will it really make that much difference to users?

The impact of the cookie block

The main focus of the change being made to Google Chrome is to empower users to have more control over data and how it is being used. As a result of the 3rd-party cookies block and the fact that only 1st party data will be usable by advertisers, anyone browsing via Google Chrome will now be able to have more control over the way personal information is used by the businesses that information has been shared with.

Dealing with the block on 3rd-party cookies from a marketing perspective

The change to Google Chrome is being implemented over the next two years and is going to have the biggest impact for performance-based marketers and agencies. The block will effectively make it very difficult to collect user data as a 3rd party via Google Chrome and use it for business purposes. It’s going to make tracking and measurement tricky to do, as there will be no access to data other than 1st-party data and there could also be other consequences.

For example, where retargeting is being used, the changes will effectively mean that retargeting won’t be activated when a user visits a website via Google Chrome – as a result that retargeting could appear as prospecting. If you’re currently reliant on 3rd-party data then these changes could have a significant impact on your business. So, what can you do to lessen the potential effect?

Find products that aren’t dependent on cookie-based audiences

These do already exist, for example YouTube, Discovery Ads, and Search. Google has also stated that it’s already looking into other options to track conversions and measure activity without the need for user data.

Invest in contextual tagging

There are lots of providers and partners out there that can help your business integrate contextual tagging and get it up and running to the necessary scale.

Investigate new tools

For example, there are many options for reaching consumers via logged-in app environments (e.g. Facebook) and these won’t be affected by changes such as those that Google Chrome is about to make.

Work on the basis of a more agile marketing plan

Most organisations today have already switched to a multi channel approach that can help to withstand changes such as this when they arise. A more agile and experimental marketing strategy can ensure that your business survives as the market continues to evolve.

If Google Chrome’s decision to start blocking 3rd party cookies is likely to affect your business it’s worth noting that there are ways to ensure that you can still reach users and nurture a marketing approach that works.

Get in touch with our team of Digital Marketing specialists to find out more today.