How will the cookie-less future affect affiliates?

For any affiliates and marketing teams around the world, third-party cookies have proven themselves to be extremely valuable resources over recent years. However, this era is set to come to an end as some of the biggest browsers have announced that they will be phasing out and blocking third-party cookies.

While this may not be notable to some, affiliates should be aware of the implications that this change may have on their traffic. Below, we look at what is happening with cookies and how we can tackle the problems we will face.

What has happened?

According to recent reports, third-party cookies are expiring on some browsers including Chrome in 2022. Apple has also announced that it will eventually require users to opt-in for use of the IDFA on iPhones. Some browsers like Firefox and Safari have already started to block these cookies which means that we need to act quickly before things start to go downhill.

Essentially, users will need to opt-in in some cases to be identified to advertisers. So, if they don’t, advertisers like many affiliates won’t be able to make use of the data that was previously available to them.

How will this affect affiliates?

Many of us have been relying on cookies and tracking for quite some time and so this change will come as a blow to many. If affiliates don’t find another solution to transition away from third-party cookies, they face some serious implications.

It is possible that without the identifiers, affiliates will lose the ability to deliver messages that are relevant to people online. This can lead to a reduction in sales revenue and visitors overall. Additionally, frequency capping will be much harder as advertisers won’t be able to control how often their messages are delivered to users.

Did you know that DSPs use identifiers to optimise their bids? Without cookies, it will become harder to optimise campaigns and ensure the overall cost is reduced. Finally, you can expect issues when it comes to measuring a campaign’s success and ensuring that ad spend was used on the right areas. This data proves extremely valuable to many affiliates and without it, it can be harder to manage a budget.

Are there other solutions?

For any affiliates who have been making use of third-party cookies for years now, this change will be difficult to deal with. However, if you want to maintain your traffic and continue advertising in the same way, you must be willing to adapt and find new solutions.

It is expected that there will be two new classes of identity solutions that will come into play and replace the old ones. This will include both first-party users IDs and aggregate solutions. If you take a closer look at this playbook published by MediaMath, you’ll learn more about how these solutions could benefit you in the future.

Stay ahead

With some browsers already blocking third-party cookies, now is the time to act. It won’t be long before the changes come through on Chrome and Apple devices, so you need to make sure that you stay ahead of the competition. It is likely that cookie-less traffic will have a large impact overall but there are ways to mitigate the loss.

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