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Third-party cookies are dead, long live first-party data

Google has announced that it will stop the use of third-party (3P) cookies in Chrome (which represents 2/3rd share of the browser market.) by the end of 2023, joining a growing list of browsers ditching the notorious tracking technology. Apple’s Safari browser and Mozilla’s Firefox browser already block third-party tracking cookies. Third-party cookies are typically the ones set by “third-party” ad tech companies whose tracking code is found on millions of sites. This is completely different from first-party (1P) cookies, which are set by sites or users themselves. When consumers visit, they know they are interacting with Amazon; but most consumers are completely unaware of the many ad tech trackers that are collecting their information. This happens most of the time without their knowledge, and certainly without their consent. The ad tech companies then sell their data for profit or make money by using it to help marketers improve the targeting of ads.

The loss of third-party cookies leads to challenges when trying to track and understand buyer behavior online. The first step in tackling third-party cookie loss is shifting to a first-party data strategy. Unlike third-party data that is often available to many different companies, first-party data is unique and personalized to your business. It's data that you already own and collect with direct consent from consumers (opt-in), through interactions on apps and websites, and in response to marketing initiatives, like email, social media, and loyalty programs. Working with a first-party data strategy means that

  • Companies and brands will need to focus more on collecting first-party data, through surveys, profile updates, opt-ins, or Salesforce technology to collect more information about your audience. But when collecting data, it is very important to be transparent to the customer, trust is a very important topic. It is mentioned in Salesforce's State of the Connected Customer survey where it shows that 62% is comfortable with relevant personal information being used in a transparent and beneficial manner.

  • Think more about personalized journeys and experiences, first-party is data from your actual visitors, customers, prospects, making it important to personalize the whole experience.

  • Be more technologically advanced than your competitors, because now they are using the same targeting data, which makes it harder to understand why your competitors are taking certain actions. But if you are more technologically advanced, you will be able to read, understand and use your first-party data better.

Whether you consider building a first-party data strategy or delivering a personalized cross-channel experience to your customers, it is important to have the right technology to support it. There are plenty of personalization platforms and tools on the market to choose from, so where to go next? According to Gartner’s “Magic Quadrant for Personalization Engines, 2021” Salesforce (Interaction Studio) has been named a Leader for 4 years in a row.

Interaction Studio can make the 1-to-1 engagement a reality — across all touchpoints. It can deliver truly relevant customer experiences with Salesforce's leading real-time personalization and interaction management solution. Interaction Studio is part of the Salesforce Marketing Cloud ecosystem, but can also be purchased as a standalone solution.

We believe that with Interaction Studio, marketers have a new instrument in their toolbox, to better understand and engage with their visitors, customers, and prospects. Our vision on the main Interaction Studio capabilities and benefits are listed below:

  • Recognize customers and prospects, even if they are unknown just yet. Whenever an unknown customer visits your website, Interaction Studio creates a profile of Mr/Mrs. X. That same profile is being updated whenever Mr/Mrs. X returns. You can then personalize the website based on their click, browsing history. And when Mr/Mrs. X becomes known, their data profiles are enriched with all the previously unknown information.

  • Control each individual personalized experience through the power of Einstein AI. Present each customer with the next best action or offer. And with Einstein, you can recommend the most relevant products, content, categories, and more based on each customer's unique characteristics and preferences.

  • You need to get to the future, ahead of your customers, and be ready to greet them when they arrive, is a quote of Marc Benioff, one of the founders and CEO of Salesforce. And this is precisely what Interaction Studio can offer, guide each customer along the most appropriate path, triggering interactions where they are or in the channel they prefer, including owned, social, and paid media.

When all things considered, the end of third-party cookies isn’t that bad after all, knowing all the benefits first-party data has to offer marketers in the personalization with visitors, customers, and prospects. After all, consumers benefit the most from the right usage of first-party data.

Want to know more about Interaction Studio or the usage of first-party data, let us know at

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