How Programmatic Looks Without Third-Party Cookies (Part I)
How Programmatic Looks Without Third-Party Cookies (Part I)

How Programmatic Looks Without Third-Party Cookies (Part I)

Digital Marketing

Sheri Cosgrove

Nov 15 2023

The ban on third-party cookies is going to have a significant impact on those working with programmatic advertising. It will no longer be possible to target and track users with third-party cookies, which means you have to place your focus on first-party data, and options like contextual targeting, to get your ads in front of the right audience. 

Cookie deprecation will impact how you track and use data, too, and might impact the demand-side platform (DSP) you want to use as you navigate the changes ahead. 

The Connection Between Cookie Deprecation and Data Use

The primary difference between how cookies impact data and how a cookieless future will play out is in the kind of data that is collected. Third-party cookies will no longer be an option, which means you’ll have to rely on first-party data sources (such as email addresses or phone numbers) voluntarily given to you by prospective customers. 

First-party data is essential now, and adopting a collection strategy is of the ultimate importance as we move closer to 2024. Stay up-to-date on the changes to adapt your marketing strategies as cookies are phased out.

Tracking data in a post-cookie world

The first step to collecting first-party data is to make your intentions clear to prospective customers. You’ll need to get informed consent from consumers before collecting their data on your website or through other kinds of interactions, such as interactions with your ads or landing pages. 

In a cookieless future, 41% of marketers think that their largest challenge will be the inability to track the right kinds of data. That’s why it’s important to spend time getting to know ways to collect first-party data and build an effective marketing strategy around it. 

You may also need to place a focus on cross-device tracking. Using shared identifiers, like user sign-in data, can assist you in figuring out who’s spending time on your site, which can be helpful when you target ads.

Managing and analyzing first-party data

Analyzing data to improve your campaign is essential, and how you do it may change in a cookieless environment. You may need to rely on segmentation tools to sort your audiences into different time periods or groups so you can make more effective decisions on when to run your ads. 

Another thing to consider is how you’re going to track and sort data once you’ve collected it. If you rely on Google Analytics 4 (GA4) for most of your analytics and consumer insights, Enhanced Conversions is one option. Enhanced Conversions uses a hashing algorithm that protects customer data but is also able to match data to signed-in Google accounts. 

No matter where the user logs in (on a tablet, phone, desktop, or other device), their data will always be attributed to them. With more accurate attribution with this tool, you can improve your overall conversion rate. Set up Enhanced Conversions with Google Tag Manager or Google Tag.

Choosing a DSP for the Future

A DSP is a type of software that lets you buy advertisements with the support of automation. With the recent changes in GA4, DSPs will also need to evolve.

According to Statista, a survey performed in 2020 found that programmatic buyers in the United States largely preferred using the Amazon DSP to navigate the change from using third-party cookies. Coming in second was Google Display and Video 360. 

Here’s the top 10 ranking based on the survey:

1. Amazon DSP: 69%
2. Google Display and Video 360: 63%
3. Verizon Media DSP: 55%
4. Adobe Advertising Cloud: 48%
5. The Trade Desk DSP: 46%
6. OneView: 41%
7. Xandr Invest: 36%
8. Adform: 35%
9. Amobee: 34%
10. MediaMath DSP: 34%

To choose for your marketing efforts, consider factors such as the DSP’s reach, efficiency, support options, costs, and data-collection strategies. By doing this now, you’ll position yourself to be in a better place when cookies are eventually phased out in 2024.

Ready to update your digital marketing strategy and build your business?
Our experts are here to help.

Contact Us Today!

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Sign up with your email address to receive news and updates