8 min.
The death of the third-party cookie and its impact on content and customer experience
1L’art de la gestion de projet2Un projet à succès commence par une bonne gouvernance3Cascade, agilité, demandes de changement?

The death of the third-party cookie and its impact on content and customer experience

Social Media Content & SEO Client experience & UX

Nothing is constant except change. – Buddha

The eventual removal of third-party cookies, scheduled for 2023, is expected to have significant implications for a host of digital marketing products and solutions. Targeting, measurement and attribution will be transformed by these changes to varying degrees. Some alternative solutions are being developed, but it is difficult to imagine a world where digital media will not be transformed by the pro-privacy initiatives claimed by Apple and Google. But what about content and customer experience platforms and tools? Reminder:   The impact of the end of cookies on your paid media initiatives


The majority of platforms used as part of your content and customer experience strategy should not be directly affected by the possible removal of third-party cookies. The impact of these transformations will be felt more in other channels that could influence and increase the importance of your primary data acquisition strategies. Here we offer an overview of the changes to be expected on your web assets.




Expected impacts:  None to low Post-cookie importance:  High

Customer communication tools have the advantage of being a primary source of data — since your customer databases belong to you, the removal of third-party cookies theoretically has no influence on your email strategy (other than value it). A CRM like HubSpot will not be affected. “  HubSpot's cookies are first-party cookies, so they're not impacted by the Chrome updates. Your HubSpot tracking code will continue to function, and your HubSpot reports will continue to contain data. Source On the other hand, some CRMs offer a component for enriching your audiences or your data, such as Salesforces Audience Studio.


The cookie apocalypse could therefore have significant repercussions on these types of solutions, but it should still be remembered that they are generally not 100% dependent on third-party cookies.

“  Audience Studio has prepared for this change and can collect many more types of IDs next to cookies: hashed emails from your customers and other customer IDs, MAID and Ad IDs that all mobile devices have and is used in apps […]. A key argument for why the impact on Audience Studio will be limited is that currently the share of digital ad spend using cookies is only around 25%. – Source  _  



Expected impacts:  None to low Post-cookie importance:  Very high

It's a safe bet that an advantageous loyalty program will remain one of the best sources of primary data. It is still necessary to have an interesting offer in return for the information of your users. “  Publishers will need to create identity solutions. […] Users behaviour, preferences and activity can then be tracked as publishers will now be able to track the user journey and predict their likely actions.

 The data tracked using the identity solution can then be stored into a Data Management Platform (DMP), which can then be leveraged as first-party data for campaign targeting or cross promotion.   – IAB SEA+India Data & Analytics Committee 



Expected impacts:  Low Post-cookie importance: High

Content is an important gateway to most sites and a great opportunity to build or refine audiences based on your users' interests. A well-oiled content strategy can therefore offer many advantages if used in synergy with a relevant loyalty program.

“  The next best option to cookies based behavioral targeting is anything keyword or keyword contextual-based advertising. Years ago everyone discounted it and we moved further and further away from keyword targeting, but now we're going to have to go straight back to it.   – Jon Kagan, VP of Search at  Cogniscient Media

Note that creating interactive or downloadable content is a good way to build contextualized audiences. 



Expected impact:  Low Post-cookie importance:  Unchanged In the majority of cases, optimization and A/B testing platforms use first-party cookies and therefore will not experience the impact of removing third-party cookies. “  Optimize's JavaScript snippet uses cookies to store some data in visitors' browsers. In most contexts these are first-party cookies.  – Optimizely Documentation


The most advanced features will be the ones that will feel the brunt of these changes the most. For example, a dynamic personalization tool connected to a third-party data targeting platform will no longer be able to function as is. 


Expected repercussions:  Medium to high Recent changes from Apple are hurting. Indeed, with ITP 2.3, Apple limits user tracking to 7 days.

“  So, with ITP, a visitor coming back more than seven days after they initially triggered an experiment runs the risk of seeing a different variation. A/B testing in these conditions is useless and does not produce reliable results.  – Lauréline Saux A conversion test usually needs to be run over a long period of time to be meaningful, and all of a sudden targeting and measurement are no longer reliable on Apple devices. Adjustments with respect to targeting and interpretation of data are therefore necessary.  


Expected impact :  Low Post-cookie importance: Unchanged Heatmap tools (eg Hotjar or Crazy Egg) also use primary cookies. If these should not experience repercussions following Google's changes, the measurement components could be transformed in the same way as the performance analysis tools.


The impact of the cookie apocalypse on your owned channels should be relatively small, but the impact on your paid media and data could create significant upheavals. A healthy collection of data is therefore to be preferred to better position yourself against your competition. Do you think you are well positioned? Is it time to rebalance your efforts? 

Visit our special section dedicated to the Cookie Apocalypse to learn more about it