One question arising among Web experts: Will Tracking Cookies Become Obsolete?
First, let us define the term. According to PC Magazine: “A tracking cookie involves data stored in the user’s computer by a Web site being visited. ‘Third-party’ advertisers place these cookies there to monitor the user’s Web surfing habits. And many people consider them an invasion of privacy.”
Furthermore, as Techopedia notes: “Many firms that use tracking cookies say the data collected involve demographics more than personal data. And this helps businesses make effective decisions about advertising and outreach. Yet, when firms collect IP addresses and personal data, the risk always exists for inappropriate use. Thus, tracking cookies continue to be controversial.” This helps explain the popularity of ad blocking software. See 1, 2.
Now, we turn to the future of tracking cookies.
Will Tracking Cookies Become Obsolete
Given the widespread use of tracking cookies, why their expected decline in the future?
eMarketer reports the following:
“The death of the tracking cookie may be upon us. According to a September 2017 survey of U.S. brand-side digital marketing executives by Viant, more than 60% of respondents believe they will no longer need to rely on cookies for the majority of their digital marketing within the next two years. Although cookies have been the staple way to track activity on Web sites for more than two decades, that monopoly on user tracking is slowly eroding as browsers and regulators in Europe crack down on digital privacy. Last summer, Apple’s Safari browser made tracking users more difficult by deleting third-party cookies after one day.”
“While marketers’ reliance on cookies declines, it will still stick around for a while.”
However, eMarketer also reports that the drop in tracking cookies may be more imminent:
“It’s a hard knock life for tracking cookies these days. Flashtalking analyzed 20 advertisers worldwide throughout Q4 2017. And it found that 64% of their tracking cookies were either blocked or deleted by Web browsers. Rejection rates on mobile devices reached 75%, compared with 41% on desktop.”
“Originally, cookies tracked users across the Web on browsers. But, it’s more difficult to track a user who spends their internet time opening and closing mobile apps, since those apps operate independently of each other.”