Facebook switch from 3rd party to 1st Party cookies: What does this mean for advertisers?
Facebook recently sent an email to all advertisers stating that on Oct 24th, they will transition from 3rd party cookies to 1st party ones. In practical terms what does this mean for me as a Facebook ads customer? They also say that one has the option to opt out of 1st party cookies. Should we do this?
This switch is driven by recent data-protection scandals, some of which Facebook has been front and center of. To make custom, targeted ads, advertisers use a great deal of customer data. “Cookies” are the way websites save information about visitors to their site.
That’s how your favorite brands track the items you’ve looked at on their site, so they can place those same items in an ad you might see somewhere else later on.
Or, they might use it to show you those same items again the next time you visit the site. In short, cookies let companies gather information about people so they can sell stuff more effectively. In the past, most cookies were created by third parties.
The first-party cookies that Facebook now allows are made by the website itself, not by a third party. This is meant to help take back control over who has customer data, and what they can use it for. First-party cookies also don’t get blocked by ad blockers.
However, your site may not use its own cookies at all (many don’t, and rely on Facebook’s instead). If this is the case, this change means virtually nothing for your ad strategy. You don’t need to create your own site cookies, since Facebook’s will do the work for you, and if there are any issues, Facebook will be held accountable - not you.
Although Facebook gives you the opt-out option, it’s not wise to do so. Since first-party cookies come with benefits in terms of security and visibility, opting out could hurt the reach of your ads. First-party cookies are generally safer and more effective, so this is a good change that advertisers like you will automatically reap benefits from.