Google addresses third-party cookie deprecation concerns: ‘It’s time to move’

Google advised advertisers to take urgent action by investing in AI as it addressed potential third-party cookie deprecation delays.

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) warned the tech giant last month that it could not proceed with the removal of third-party cookies unless it resolved some privacy concerns first.

However, it appears Google is confident these issues will be ironed out ahead of time as Dan Taylor, the company’s vice president of Global Advertising Strategies, confirmed it is still on track for a cookieless Chrome in the second half of 2024 as planned. With that in mind, he told advertisers that it’s “time to move” and look for long-term cookie alternatives during an interview with Campaign.

Marketers aren’t ready. Taylor claimed that just 30% of markets feel prepared for third-party cookie deprecation. He also noted that both advertisers and publishers have been reluctant to invest in cookie alternatives.

Moving forward. Advising how advertisers should navigate a cookieless world, Taylor suggested overcoming signal loss by prioritising the following:

  • AI investment.
  • Refined targeting.
  • Measurement and ad delivery strategies.

Taylor also suggested providing more information and control to consumers. For instance, letting them know when their data is being used and explaining the value it brings. He added:

  • “Reminding consumers in the moment when use of their data is actually delivering value to them is far more powerful because they can decide whether or not that data is useful to provide at that moment or whether it’s an experience they find creepy or don’t want. It’s not viable for us to just recreate the same technologies under a new guise.”

Investing in AI. Taylor reiterated the importance of using AI to reach your target audience in a cookieless environment. He concluded:

  • “Digital marketing was built on the promise of precision and when that precision goes away, your predictive capabilities need to go up. Fortunately, we think AI is at a point where it’s going to take the industry into the next decade of innovation.”
  • “For businesses, you can either ignore these enforced changes until it’s no longer tenable, or you can start investing in AI and become a more adaptable, versatile organisation.”

Why we care. Marketers still heavily reliant on targeted advertising through third-party cookies should act promptly to explore alternative methods for reaching high-value consumers. Failing to prepare could have catastrophic consequences for campaign performance.

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Deep dive. Read our SEO and the future world without cookies investigation for more information.

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About the author

Nicola Agius

Nicola Agius is Paid Media Editor of Search Engine Land after joining in 2023. She covers paid media, retail media and more. Prior to this, she was SEO Director at Jungle Creations (2020-2023), overseeing the company’s editorial strategy for multiple websites. She has over 15 years of experience in journalism and has previously worked at OK! Magazine (2010-2014), Mail Online (2014-2015), Mirror (2015-2017), Digital Spy (2017-2018) and The Sun (2018-2020). She also previously teamed up with SEO agency Blue Array to co-author Amazon bestselling book Mastering In-House SEO.

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