Marketing measures for a “cookieless” world

What is and what purpose do container tags serve in the world of digital marketing?

A TAG is activated by a trigger (signal) to receive data from a variable. Then a container (a “cookie”) is a vehicle that does the work of activating in response to the interaction of the user on a site or app and sends the signal (some data) to the person who requires it. The container has the role of orchestrating signals that are relevant in the measurement or to activate digital marketing processes.


In marketing, we have been used to arranging containers in three parts (Facebook or Google, for example) for those in charge of administering certain tasks. In return, we give access to information about the users if they view a page or another value action for the business. When working with these third-party containers, they (Facebook and Google) are the real owners of the information on user interaction. In other words, we invite the third party to intercede in our relationships with our clients to listen and process the data from their interactions.


How do we define server-side tagging?

We refer to the container of tags as gathering data in the server instead of loading the user’s navigator with these functions. The control of the management and configuration of data that remains in the server which is the property of the business owner of the website or mobile application.


How does it work in response to the experience?

Typically the person in charge of the tag container in the user’s navigator (browser). It generates much more code and the functions in the user’s navigator and can create vulnerabilities for the user in terms of personal information security.


Previously, “third-party cookies” were saved (code made by a third party) in the user’s navigator. The business’ site can inclusively set information from other businesses (third parties). For example, the user visits the site of El Financiero (first party) and the El Financiero sets data that is sent by Facebook (third party). In this scene, the user has little or no knowledge or control over who is setting which codes and which data is sent. As the code remains in the user’s navigator, it can continue to “spy” on the user during their use of the internet.


How does it work now?

Now these third party codes are being removed from the users’ browsers and can only capture the user’s information from the part of the server which the user is visiting. The server that the user visits can capture information about the user by asking for their consent in advance. They are known as “first-party” as they are direct relationships between the user and business whose information (web or mobile app) is being consulted.


Why has this change been made?

Digital consumers are asking for more control of their data and more support from their governments to secure and protect privacy. The European Community with GDPR and the State of California in the USA with CCPA defined the standard where the digital consumer (“the data subject”) brings consent to save and use data from the interactions with the advertisements and websites.


These standards compel the digital advertising platforms like Facebook and Google, the data gathering intermediaries like Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel and browsers like Chrome and Safari that put these standards online and avoid fines. As a result, these technology companies apply these regulations universally and in this way, they convert into new global standards.

In September 2021, Apple limited most user tracking and allocation of marketing campaigns in Safari with “Intelligent Tracking Prevention” (ITP) 2.3 to restrict user tracking between websites. In April 2020, the version ITP 2.2 has now cut the use of cookies to save user information. In the USA, Apple browsers and operating systems represent more than 40% of the market and globally more than 20%.


Therefore there is a convergence of regulations and changes with some important technology providers that compels the reformulation of control of the user over their data and of the business’ responsibilities in how they capture and use that data.


Who has to apply this new form of data processing?

All technology businesses that bring solutions that interact with the users’ browsers need to actualize their technology for this change. This includes the technology businesses in the market.


Given these changes, the businesses that advertise on the internet and that benefit from the tracking of users to make a contribution to the campaigns for their businesses need to ensure that they will be conscious of the changes to the paid advertising platforms and which changes will impact the interpretation of their results. Consequently, the media like digital newspapers need to understand that the behavior of the advertisers will change and they need to take measures to avoid losing the source of income for paid advertising.


Finally, the businesses that have sites and digital apps need to actualize the technical tools to ensure that they are within the new norms to continue to currently manage the exchange of data with their clients. By not making changes, fines can be generated by the customers residing in places where regulations demand a proper use of customer’s consent or there is a risk of having to pay fines.


And lastly, the website and mobile apps users need to pay attention to the warnings and requests for data use and give or retain their permission to continue in this case.


What are the benefits for the user?

Users have better control of their computers now that there is much less probability of the loss or theft of personal data or that is to say, better security for the user. Above all, the user maintains control of consent for the use of their data.


What are the benefits of this tool?

The collection from the browser facilitates the direct relationship between the client and the business. It maintains transparency and consent as principles to increase the security and the control of the use of data.


What does the elimination of cookies refer to?

The elimination refers to the “third-party cookies” that will no longer be allowed on a website or mobile app (i.e. a browser executing code of or for a third party)

How to survive the elimination of cookies?


What does the elimination of cookies mean?


For many years, the fundamental part of digital marketing has been based on cookies, the cookies are archives that contain data. What data? Every time that the website is entered and the cookies are accepted, the information on the interactions generated between the browser and the website can be shared. It is supposedly with the end result of improving the user experience (giving more appropriate content and advertising) but it is not always this way.


The finish line for elimination was put in place a few months ago, after almost two years of talking about the topic. The elimination refers to Google Chrome finally blocking the downloading of third-party cookies. This implies that the advertisers will stop having this information as the base to segment advertising on digital media. The first part and functional cookies will continue working.


Why is it being carried out?

A consequence of starting a set of regulations is that now we do not only need to ask for the authorization of the user but that many more important industry players adjust the business rules to protect the user over the use of their information. Various browsers have been alerted to these changes: Safari, Mozilla and Chrome. Actually Chrome has the greatest market share of the browser market with 65.75%.

When is it programmed for?

Google announced that further harder changes would be applied (blocking cookies) for this type of exchange of data for 2022 but recently extended the date until 2023.


How will the elimination affect data gathering?

Advertising companies delegate much of the responsibility to Google or FB by going to them and “buying” access to their audiences. For 2022, it will depend on the data that they have on the clients and if they do not have it, it is vital to start the data gathering processes.

The promised land of digital marketing can be: less data volume, but data of the best quality if the process of gathering it was adequate. In addition, businesses need to have clarity in their privacy policies and use of the same to benefit their client.



What do we need to do for users before the elimination?

Today, we can decide if we want or do not want to share information and in the configuration of the information we share.



What changes will we experience in navigation?

As a consequence, we will maybe see that advertisements that appear to us are not as “close” = personalized.


Who will be the winners in the cookies elimination?

The users who can manage their privacy when they are navigating the internet.

The businesses that know how to articulate the data gathering strategies.

Google/VB will have to innovate to maintain their income for advertising with new business models/rules.


We are concerned about the mediums (digital newspapers for example) as possible losers at the time that the elimination is made. If the elimination causes the advertising buyers to perceive less value – as there is less information on the allocation of their advertising spending – in media advertising then they may decide to direct their resources to other channels where they can perceive the results more clearly.


How will the elimination affect the website “owners” and how do they need to prepare?

Website owners need to:


  1. Accept that they need to mature in data gathering
  2. Accept the responsibility to gather and ensure the privacy of their consumers
  3. Use the platforms in the market to understand their consumers and increase the value of the data
  4. Accept that they need to create their own “data warehouse” in the digital market to father and ensure the data privacy of consumers
  5. Focus on generating value for consumers to give consent to change