What Does Google’s Cookie Delay Mean for Marketers?

About a month ago I wrote a post titled “Can AI Help Overcome the Loss of Third-Party Cookies? Google Thinks So”.

The post was written in response to Google’s VP of Global Advertising Strategies telling everyone it was time to move on from third-party cookies. 

That there would be no more delays and marketers needed to shift their focus before it was too late. 

And then

Ah, Google.

It turns out there would in fact be more delays and the new timeline is somewhere in 2025…maybe.

Here’s the thing.

Cookies are going away. It might not be 100% by the end of the year and it might not be 100% at the end of next year, but they will go away. 

While the US certainly lags behind the EU when it comes to privacy, there are still concerns and tech companies are continuing to adapt their technologies to ensure these concerns are addressed. 

What does this mean for marketers?

We’re going to give you the same advice we have been giving – focus on first-party data.

First-party data is your data to own. 

You don’t have to worry about if or when Google decides to make a change. 

Plus, first-party data lends itself to SO MANY things, including:

  • Personalization
  • Segmentation 
  • Ad Targeting
  • Customer retention
  • Campaign optimization
  • Attribution
  • Website optimization
  • Customer experience

And more! 

Marketers can’t keep relying on Google delays. We have to move forward.

How to Collect First-Party Data  

It’s easy for me to sit here and tell marketers to move on from third-party data but I understand the reality of the situation – collecting first-party data comes with its own set of challenges. 

  • How do you get people to give you their info?
  • How do you store their info securely?
  • How do you connect your first-party data?

Yes, it’s certainly important to have the right tech stack in place but when it comes to actually collecting first-party data, it’s easier than ever!

Starting with website visitor identification

Website Visitor Identification + Your Website = First-Party Data

Just by adding one line of code to your website, you can start identifying your website visitors and gathering first-party data. 

This includes names, emails, phone numbers, job titles, companies, and more. 

What makes this so cool is that a platform like Customers.ai not only helps you identify the people, but also gives you important information about them. 

You can get demographic data and business data, and you can even track the customer journey!

On top of being able to collect the data and enrich it, Customers.ai allows you to send the data directly to your CRM, directly to your marketing automation system, directly to your ad campaigns, etc. 

You have the ability to build true customer profiles and get real attribution data without needing third-party data! 

Look, there has never been an easier way to collect first-party data in a compliant manner. 

If you aren’t using this, you are truly missing out.

The best part? It’s easy to set up!

To install the Website Visitor ID X-Ray Pixel, sign up (for FREE!), go to your dashboard, and navigate to My Automations. 

Select + New Automation and get your pixel. We have easy install options for Google Tag Manager, WordPress, and Shopify, or you can install the pixel manually.

Other Methods of Collecting First-Party Data

We are (obviously) partial to website visitor ID tools because well, that’s what do (and for the record, it’s SO easy). 

But that isn’t the only way to collect first-party data. Let’s look at a few other ways:

Email Campaigns

“Fill out your email for a 25% off discount.”

“Sign up for our newsletter and get a free [insert offer]”

“Enter your email for a chance to win [insert prize]”

There’s a reason for these things and the reason is first-party data. 

Email not only can give you personal identifiers but metrics from campaigns (think open rates, click-through rates, unsubscribe rates, etc), are great for understanding shopper preferences. 

Surveys & Quizzes

Surveys and quizzes sure are fun!

They are also brilliant methods of collecting user data. 

The key is making it simple enough and interesting enough that your customers want to complete it. 

Be sure to only ask for the information you need. 

Remember, you can build customer profiles over time so you don’t need to ask everything in one place.

Customer Feedback & Reviews

Soliciting reviews through emails, social media, or on your own website is another avenue for collecting valuable first-party data. 

Reviews can be associated with specific customers to build customer profiles and can help you better understand what they like and dislike.

Don’t Let Google Make You Complacent

While I’m sure marketers are taking a collective breath at another delay from Google, we think it’s important not to get complacent. 

Change is hard and shifting the way we do things takes time.

Use this time you have to innovate without the ticking clock of cookie deprecation.

Use this time to better understand how you can not just collect first-party data but use it to gain deeper audience insights, and, yes, actually get ready for a cookie-less world.

We are here to help and if you want to see how you can start collecting data in under 90 seconds, sign up for a free trial today!

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