It’s no longer a rumor, and the news must have reached you that Google plans to remove cookies from Chrome by the end of 2023. The reason has been that Third-party cookie-based advertisement is considered a system that erodes web users’ privacy. And many privacy advocates call for its removal.
Apple has already removed the third-party cookie feature from its browser, Safari. And some other browsers have also taken bold steps towards ending this non-privacy-friendly advertisement system. The world is only waiting on Google to fulfill its promises to end third-party cookies for good.
But then, killing it would bring many setbacks to digital and web advertisement. Ads are distributed across the web using data collected through third-party cookies. Advertisers could measure the performance of their internet campaigns because of this same feature.
Therefore, businesses and website owners will suffer greatly when this cookie is finally scrapped. Another set of people that will feel the fire is the eCommerce merchants. What can they do without the third-party cookies on their website?
Today, in this article, we’ll look at the impact that the ending of Third-party cookies will cause on eCommerce stores and what they can do to prepare for it.
Impacts of killing Third-party cookies on eCommerce stores
Although data collected from Third-party cookies cannot be used to identify a web user physically, it can still help to a great degree to reveal a user’s likes and interests. Without these cookies, it would be very hard for merchants to describe their customers on the web.
In the cookieless future, browsers might need to develop a new metric system that would respect users’ privacy and be able to measure key analytics like ad impressions and frequencies. Hopefully, maybe this new tool will be able to classify website visitors into the new and returning buyer categories.
Google is already testing some new system that would be able to classify internet users based on their topic of interest. The first was the Google FLoC, which didn’t pass the test of privacy security. The company is currently testing the Topic API.
You could imagine how difficult it would be to target ads in a cookieless world where merchants have no clue about their customers. For more than two decades now, eCommerce advertisers have only depended on Third-party cookies to gather data about their web users that relate to their product.
When cookies are gone, ad targeting would be almost impossible. Merchants may have to take a leap of faith and work by their intuition or find other ways of getting information about their prospective buyers. On the other hand, consumers will see less personalized ads and more irrelevant ads. This is the price for a web that respects people’s privacy.
Merchants should enjoy the luxury of tracking their site visitor’s behavior while it last because things won’t be that easy in the cookieless future. Meanwhile, merchants need this to test how visitors are engaging with products and know if their landing pages are attractive and informative enough to convert.
What to do to prepare your eCommerce store for the end of Third-Party cookies
Formulate a strategy from your first-data strategy
Third-Party is one of the types of cookies. Another type is the first-Party cookies which could also be used to collect data from your site’s visitors. You could do this by using forms that would contain a notice informing them about the reasons for the data collection and what the data will be used for.
First-party data pays off better than third-party data and could be used for a long time. Moreover, it will help merchants develop a strong connection with their customers and website visitors. You can collect lots of this data in significant quantities by organizing online events that will attract only customers that have an interest in your niche.
You can further attract them to fill the forms by promising to give exclusive offers, discounts, free product guides and manuals, and first-hand access to new product launches. Then, strategically put a line of first-party cookies on every step of the way to know the engagement level of each person. With this, you could also sort first-time visitors from returning buyers.
Focus on contextually targeted campaigns
As the death clock is ticking for Third-party cookie-based advertising, eCommerce merchants need to focus on keyword-based advertising. By correctly doing this, you will be able to proclaim your business and products to the right people at the right. Leveraging the power of keywords will help you present your business before researchers who are thirsty for your services or products.
But then, keep it at the back of your mind that, just like you, other merchants are also focusing on paid keyword advertisement. In this case, the winnings will be for the creatives and fast thinkers.
Develop a stronger social media presence
In the cookieless world, the winners are businesses that curate quality content and build strong communities. And social media is the best place to put this to the test.
Social media is gradually becoming a search engine where people find products and guides and interact with others who have the same request. Therefore, it will do your business lots of good if you could establish a presence on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter. These will be your saviors on the days cookies stop working.
Cookieless-based advertising will be strange and a bit challenging for all online marketers. This is why some advertisers don’t want Google to end it. However, you can prepare yourself ahead for the change by building a community on social media, focusing on a keyword-based advertisement, and leveraging first-party data.