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The Privacy Sandbox and Third-Party Cookie Deprecation

2024 promises to be a big year of change for digital marketers, especially for marketers who have relied heavily on Google's use of third-party cookies.

Cookies are small files or codes used to monitor and remember your information. For example, when a site automatically fills in your username or password, that is a type of cookie.

Third-party cookies are placed and tracked by a website other than the one the user is visiting. For example, if a user visits, that information might be tracked and used by a third party, such as Google, that has nothing to do with CNN or any of its affiliates.

Third-party cookies are used primarily to offer targeting for online advertising. They track browsing and online activities so advertisers can use that information to deliver highly personalized ads for products and services. If you've ever thought about buying something and then been shocked to see ads for that item pop up on websites and social media, you've probably been targeted with the help of a third-party cookie.

The Privacy Sandbox is a Google initiative formed to combat the pushback of third-party tracking. Google says the Sandbox "aims to create technologies that protect people's privacy online and give companies and developers tools to build thriving digital businesses. The Privacy Sandbox reduces cross-site and cross-app tracking while helping to keep online content and services free for all."

While Google seems to dearly love third-party cookies, browsers such as Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox have already blocked third-party cookies by default. Google is expected to stop using third-party cookies by the end of 2024.

What Does This Mean for Marketers?

The public and their (primarily European) governments have spoken: there are limits to acceptable online data tracking. While everyone likes free entertainment and free information, they are unwilling to get it at any price. Marketers are wise to see this as a shift change.

It's time to embrace a privacy-centric future and put your customers' considerations first. Start by rethinking what your marketing does and how customers view your efforts. Are you sending unsolicited messages? Do you make it easy for consumers to unsubscribe? Is your email audience opted in? Do you have a privacy statement on your website? Are you taking solid measures to protect the customer data stored in your servers?

The Magic of Pull vs. Push

Instead of relying on retargeting ads that aggressively follow a user from website to website (pushing your message out, or "push), get comfortable with attracting consumers to you. Instead of chasing prospects, "pull" them in.


This is the foundation of content marketing. Marketers create blogs, ads, and videos that entertain and educate. They replace push with pull. When consumers visit your website to find out more, you've drawn them in. Feeling targeted or harassed is replaced with feeling curious and interested.

As the sun sets on third-party cookie ads, this is a great time to redefine marketing strategies built on a more considerate, privacy-first mindset. Instead of pushing, reconsider the power of pulling.

Want to Learn More?

If you want to find new revenue streams to replace sales from third-party cookies, contact us today for a free consultation. Or check out these articles created to help small businesses navigate digital marketing.




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