Google’s initiative to eliminate third-party cookies and create “a more private internet” has already been delayed for the second time. What happened, and how will it impact advertisers? Here’s everything you need to know.
Google’s Privacy Sandbox initiative “aims to create technologies that both protect people's privacy online and give companies and developers tools to build thriving digital businesses.” This includes technologies built to prevent covert tracking techniques and make certain tracking methods obsolete. One of the main and arguably most important parts of this initiative, however, is the phasing out and eventual elimination of cross-app and cross-site tracking via third-party cookies in Chrome. That initiative has now been delayed for at least a year.
In July, Google announced that it would be delaying the deprecation of third-party cookies to the second half of 2024. According to Google, after receiving feedback from “developers, publishers, marketers, and regulators,” the company has determined that there needs to be more time to “evaluate and test” their new technologies before phasing out these cookies completely. This comes after another delay in June 2021, which extended the original deadline from early 2022 to sometime in 2023.
Google’s announcement says that it maintains a “deliberate approach to transitioning from third-party cookies” despite this delay, and will begin introducing Privacy Sandbox trials to users this month.
For advertisers, this means an additional year to prepare strategies to track and report marketing data without the use of third-party cookies. For developers, it means more time to test the Privacy Sandbox APIs before they roll out to the entire user base. However, for privacy-conscious users, concerns surrounding internet anonymity remain, which was the main reason Google made the decision to phase out third-party cookies in the first place. So, what does the company have to say about that?
Google writes that the feedback it has received “aligns with [its] commitment to the CMA to ensure that the Privacy Sandbox provides effective, privacy-preserving technologies and the industry has sufficient time to adopt these new solutions.” The company has also slowly begun rolling out APIs to web users, and will opt more people into these APIs in the coming months. As more users test and provide feedback, Google claims it will, “continue to listen and respond to feedback.”
What Should You Do
We recommend that advertisers and consumers alike keep up to date with how Google is collecting, managing, and sharing their data, as it will have a major impact on users in both the personal and professional sphere. The Privacy Sandbox timeline provides some information about the trial periods for certain APIs, and shows that all of them will be generally available sometime in Q3 of 2023.
Not sure how Google’s changes will impact your B2B advertising efforts? Our team at Relevance Advisors can help you make the transition away from third-party cookie data, and help your company succeed. Reach out to us today to set up a consultation.