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03.14.24 - Development

How to prepare for Chrome’s removal of third-party cookies

Google has officially started to phase out third-party cookies.

A new feature called Tracking Protection, which restricts third-party cookies by default, began rolling out to 1% of Chrome users globally on January 4, 2024 and based on their timeline, should roll out to all Chrome users by the end of 2024.

The removal of third-party cookies from Chrome could impact digital advertising and tracking methods, which many ecommerce websites heavily rely on for targeting, retargeting, and personalization. So, let’s look at what this might mean for you!

First-Party vs. Third-Party Cookies

First, it’s important to understand that Google is only removing¬†third-party cookies…not first-party. So what’s the difference? Both types of cookies are small pieces of data stored on a user’s web browser, but they differ in their origin and purpose:

  1. First-Party Cookies:
    • Origin: First-party cookies are created by the website the user is currently visiting. When a user visits a website, the website sends a request to the user’s browser to store a cookie containing information about the user’s interaction with that specific website.
    • Purpose: First-party cookies are primarily used to enhance user experience by remembering user preferences, login information, shopping cart items, and other site-specific settings. They are typically considered more trustworthy because they are directly associated with the website the user is interacting with.
  2. Third-Party Cookies:
    • Origin: Third-party cookies are created by domains other than the one the user is currently visiting. These cookies are often set by advertisers or analytics providers embedded on the website through elements like ads, social media buttons, or embedded content from external sources.
    • Purpose: Third-party cookies are primarily used for tracking user behavior across different websites. They enable advertisers to collect data on users’ browsing habits, interests, and interactions across multiple sites to deliver targeted ads, measure ad performance, and personalize content. However, they have raised privacy concerns due to their ability to track users across the web without their explicit consent.
What Can I Do to Prepare for the Phase Out?

There are several strategies and adaptations you can consider to mitigate the impact:

By adopting these strategies and staying proactive, you can navigate the changing landscape of digital advertising and maintain a successful online business despite the removal of third-party cookies from Chrome.

Not sure if you’re prepared for the update? Give us a shout and we can provide you with a website audit!