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Chrome Announces End of Third-Party Cookies: One Year Later

  • - Travis Clinger
  • 5 min read

One year ago, Google announced its plan to phase out support for third-party cookies in Chrome. A lot has happened since then, and the countdown clock continues to tick away rapidly towards January 2022. A number of identity solutions have emerged as a result of evolving privacy regulations and policy changes from browsers and device makers, making the advertising ecosystem more complicated and noisy than ever. 

LiveRamp has always been at the forefront of innovation and change, being the first to announce a set of technologies rooted in consumer control and transparency for the cookieless world. Our solution is also the first to be widely adopted and leveraged for hundreds of advertising campaigns, validating that third-party cookies are no longer required to generate the business outcomes needed to succeed, now and in the future. 

LiveRamp Authenticated Traffic Solution

We’ve been working on our Authenticated Traffic Solution for over four years—and it enables a number of key use cases: marketers can reach addressable audiences, publishers can monetize authenticated inventory, and technology platforms can transact on a durable, omnichannel, people-based identifier.

As part of the full solution, LiveRamp Authenticated Traffic Solution (ATS) is critical technology that establishes addressability through a trusted and transparent three-way value exchange among consumers, marketers, and publishers. This value exchange enables people-based advertising and measurement on authenticated inventory across the open Internet, while providing consumers access to premium content in a privacy-first way. 

ATS benefits everyone:

  • Marketers – who run campaigns transacting on identity see better results vs. third-party cookies across key metrics, including reach, ROAS, cost-per-page-view, and average order value. 
  • Publishers – who deploy ATS make their inventory targetable and measurable without a reliance on cookies or other device identifiers. Marketers can deliver personalized experiences that improve engagement and increase return-on-ad-spend without compromising consumer privacy, and publishers earn CPMs that reflect the true value of their inventory.
  • Consumers – have full choice and control over how their data is used, and can share that data in a trusted and transparent manner with publishers and marketers. 

What sets LiveRamp apart?

As the first live end-to-end solution in the ecosystem, LiveRamp’s technology offers these critical components for marketers to reach their audiences and measure campaigns effectively today.

  • People-based and omnichannel – Walled gardens have thrived because of people-based identity, but now the open Internet has the chance to achieve addressability parity with walled gardens. LiveRamp’s Authenticated Traffic Solution allows for greater reach, including across previously unaddressable environments such as Safari or Firefox, people-based targeting and frequency capping, and better measurement. Further, LiveRamp’s Authenticated Traffic Solution Infrastructure is omnichannel and can be deployed across display, mobile in-app, and connected TV publishers. Every impression bought via the Authenticated Traffic Solution is measurable and marketers can measure impressions in a transparent way in the environment of their choice.
  • Neutral, open, and interoperable – Because marketers don’t rely on a single platform, the technology and platforms they choose to work with must be interoperable. Choosing a solution that’s owned by a platform that may be swayed by media bias can limit flexibility. We have spent years building the industry’s leading trusted identity infrastructure—one that’s both neutral and interoperable across technology platforms, MVPDs, streaming video platforms, data providers, and agencies.
  • Consumer-first, privacy-centric, and secure – As marketers explore different solutions, it is critical to examine and understand how each helps enhance consumer privacy. LiveRamp supports transparent value exchanges, which allows consumers to engage with brands and publishers while maintaining ongoing control of how their data is collected and used. Further, LiveRamp enhances user privacy by offering consumers a global opt-out that applies to platforms and publishers that leverage LiveRamp’s identifier.
    ATS puts publishers and marketers in control of their data. Our role is connecting data through the ecosystem seamlessly, without creating a publisher co-op, and allowing publishers to choose which platforms receive identity from them.
  • Global and scaled – Since its launch, ATS gained widespread, global adoption. To date, more than 325 publishers worldwide have adopted it in the U.S., UK, France, Italy, Spain, Germany, Australia, and Japan, including 70% of the U.S. Comscore top 20, and 60% of the U.S. Comscore top 50. Additionally, more than 25 supply-side platforms and 45 demand-side platforms have adopted support of the LiveRamp identifier for activation and measurement, helping publishers, marketers, and the industry as a whole collaboratively deliver addressability. 

Results that matter

When a health and fitness technology brand ran an A/B test using LiveRamp’s identifier vs. third-party cookies, it doubled its ROAS, decreased cost-per-page-view by 34%, and increased average order value by 13%. Additionally, a major consumer electronics manufacturer who conducted a similar A/B test on desktop saw an 104% increase in ROAS.

Our early analysis also shows that on average, publishers are seeing meaningful improvement in the revenue they can realize for their advertising inventory. On Chrome, for example, yields increased by 50% through ATS. On browsers that currently block cookies, the impact has been even greater—up to 375% yield improvement on Safari.

What to expect from LiveRamp in 2021

It’s been a busy year at LiveRamp, and as the countdown to 2022 continues, we aren’t resting on our laurels. The following is a short list of initiatives we’re working on:

  • Continuing our ATS rollout across display, mobile in-app, and connected TV
  • Reaffirming our commitment to neutrality and interoperability by enabling access to other identifiers; Unified ID 2.0 was the first of several IDs that will leverage the Authenticated Traffic Solution
  • Providing marketers with forecasting capabilities against authenticated inventory, including reach and frequency, which will replace match rates and give marketers a mechanism to better plan their campaigns
  • Enabling publishers to control which platforms have access to their identity—publishers will be able to distribute the LiveRamp identifier to the DSP of their choice for open exchange and private marketplace deals
  • Expanding into new markets within Asia, Europe, and South America 
  • Ensuring our solutions continue to meet the requirements and guidelines set forth by regulators, device makers, and browsers 

Want to get started now using your existing data, tech, and teams? Marketers should begin activating and measuring on LiveRamp’s Authenticated Traffic Solution in order to deliver at or above parity, develop benchmarks, and optimize without third-party cookies.

Further, LiveRamp’s solution also provides mobile addressability to account for upcoming changes to the IDFA and enables people-based measurement, despite the redaction of DCM logs. With these two changes occurring in early 2021, there’s even greater urgency to transition today!

Reach out to [email protected] to get started.