Cookies… But Not The Kind You Eat!

Image result for cookies
Source

Have any of you ever felt as though you are being stalked by an ad? Recently I was looking online for a pair of boots and no sooner had I found a pair of that I liked, I later saw an ad for the same pair of boots pop up on an article I was reading with suggestions for similar boots that they thought I might also like to purchase. This feeling of being stalked by an ad is becoming increasingly common as a result of online ads gradually becoming more targeted and personalised.

And this is all thanks to cookies!

Cookies are small text files that are placed on your computer when you visit a website. They contain identification tags that allow trackers to identify your activities as you move from site to site. In order to deliver tailored ads, companies are able to synchronise these identification tags to pinpoint specific individuals. These are then used by marketers to target you across your devices and accounts.

Image result for web cookies
Source

While cookies can be helpful in some instances, more often than not they are viewed as a nuisance and an invasion of privacy. This mindset has led to some speculation that cookies are no longer relevant in digital marketing with an increasing number of people employing specific cookie blocking technology to mitigate their privacy concerns. Additionally, internet browsers are also making it simple to delete your cookies after closing a window and can also prevent them from being set when you access a website. You may have seen some warnings alerting you to the fact that the website you are on is using cookies and requesting your permission to continue. Furthermore, the growing number of devices per consumer has made it challenging for organisations to trace behaviours as cookies are unable to track across devices.

Image result for this website uses cookies
Source

So what are some of your experiences with being stalked by ads, and do you think cookies are helpful or are they just an invasion of privacy?

Advertisement

8 thoughts on “Cookies… But Not The Kind You Eat!

  1. Hi Chauntelle, An interesting read! What are the experts recommending for small businesses, should they be changing their strategy in relation to the shifting perception of cookies?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the comment Eugene! Despite the changing perceptions of cookies, there are fewer alternatives for marketers to use that are as effective in collecting data. Therefore, the main consensus is for businesses to not completely abandon cookies but to use them responsibly. There’s definitely an ethical consideration for companies who do use them and the main goal for them is to be as transparent as possible in their use and collection of customer’s personal data. Legislation is also catching up for example, the EU’s Cookie Law ensures that consumers are aware when a business’s website is using cookies thus ensuring transparency and allowing customers more control over their data. If businesses don’t comply to this law, they face serious penalties.

      Like

  2. Great read! I think privacy is one of my main concerns for digital marketing. If they are used ethically, I wouldn’t mind. However it is hard to know what companies do with the information hence I would think it is still a concern for me and feel that it is an invasion.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! šŸ™‚ I think it’s important for businesses to ensure that they are managing customer data in a way that guarantees privacy however I do agree that it is difficult to know exactly what they are doing with the data they collect and if it is being used in an ethical manner.

      Like

  3. It annoys me when ads pop up from websites I spent 2 seconds on! As for relevant products, the stuff Iā€™m looking at online is usually non-essential and therefore even though helpful, these ads are not good for my impulse purchasing!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I agree! I always get ads for products that I may have only looked at for a few seconds which then leads to me having to endure the same ads following me across every web page and this is usually what puts me off purchasing the product.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s