A cookieless future, without third-party data
The current scenario in the world of advertising sees many of the major browsers, such as Safari, Microsoft Edge and Firefox, adopting measures to block third-party cookies, i.e. cookies created by domains other than the one in which the user is browsing and interacting.
Today, these cookies are widely used for a variety of purposes and enable the analysis of user behaviour, the proposition of targeted advertisements and the adoption of targeted marketing strategies, but they often pose a major privacy risk.
These concerns have prompted the authorities to intervene with new rules and led the main search engine manufacturers to move towards automatic blocking and control of cookies by users themselves. But the real breakthrough will probably occur at the end of 2024 when Google will remove them from Chrome. This will mean that most browsers will not support third-party cookies, which will have an impact on website analytics and online advertising.
First-party data, what it is and why it is important
Many companies are reconsidering the use of first-party data. This is data about a company's customers that is collected and owned by the company and can be used to create ads, content and experiences that are relevant to the individual.
First-party data can be collected in different ways, both online and offline, and used for different purposes:
- Behavioural data collected directly from the company's websites and Apps: This information can give insight into who is visiting the website and their interests. This allows us to tailor business strategies to audience preferences.
- Data from subscriptions: People who subscribe show a high interest in the company/brand. Using data from subscriptions gives us a more informed idea of who we should target.
- Data from social media: Data left by customers on social media helps us understand our audience. Not only preferences, but also demographic data. The content of posts and comments provides insight into what people think about the brand, content and products.
- Purchase data: Combining data derived from offline sales together with that provided by the use of eCommerce provides a more complete understanding of purchasing behaviour.
- Survey and customer feedback data: Customer opinion is crucial, so asking them directly for feedback can be a suitable strategy to validate a company's image or new product launch.
- Creation of predictive models: First-party data can be used for the creation of a 'predictive model', by which term we mean all those techniques that can not only identify recurring patterns and trends in the available data but also provide a prediction of certain quantities of interest. Predictive analyses are increasingly evoked when talking about identifying future trends.
Furthermore, the collection and use of first-party data leaves competitors in the dark as to why certain marketing activities or new tactics are chosen. Whereas previously anyone could access the same data through third-party sources, in this way only the owning company has the ability to know the preferences and behaviour of its customers.
Advantages of first-party data
First-party data have several advantages and are of fundamental importance to a company's strategy. Moreover, since they are owned by the company, they offer great insights into the company's customer base. The advantages may include:
- Reduced customer data collection costs. First-party data drastically reduce business costs. Technically, they are considered free of charge even though the various collection methods still have a cost (e.g. newsletter management, paid tools, CRM costs, etc.).
- Personalisation of the customer experience. These detailed data sets reveal the wishes and needs of your direct customers, so that they can be translated into more effective campaigns.
- Optimisation impact decision-making processes. Making marketing decisions based on first-party data yields important results as you are likely to achieve a higher success rate in your campaigns.
- Delivering business value in an increasingly cookieless world. With data protection laws and growing public concern about privacy, first-party data is the safe and privacy-conscious tool of choice.
- Improve targeting accuracy. First-party data helps marketers improve accuracy and relevance, reduce advertising waste and ultimately increase ROI.
- Mapping the customer journey. By integrating and accessing first-party data, it is possible to map the buyer journey, uncovering the different steps consumers take in their path to conversion and the order in which they complete them. This, in turn, helps to deliver the right message at the right time and place.
- Advancing omnichannel measurement. By linking data from all channels, brands can see how a customer went from an email to a website to a mobile app before completing the purchase in shop. Through this process, marketers can segment and optimise different audiences and drive the behaviours that lead to conversion.
E-Business Consulting, a marketing agency since 2003, can help you with first-party data collection, call us now and request a consultation!