Third Party Cookie

Third party cookies are records in text form, which are stored on the User’s Browser or computer when they visit a Website. When that website is revisited, this data can be read by the provider of the third party cookies. In contrast to regular cookies or first party cookies, which are usually used by the webmasters themselves, such cookies are placed by advertisers, in other words, third parties who place their cookies on other websites, in order to collect various, often advertising-relevant information about users.

How it works[edit]

Third party cookies can store the number of page views and length of stay on a website or the path a user has taken via Hyperlinks. They are supposed to enable Tracking.

Third party cookies are used in particular to create a log that provides the third party with a variety of information, including: What websites has the user visited? What internal links did they click, what path did they take? Which pages did the user view and for how long?

This data is stored in a specific format. All cookies consist of assignments of names and values. Depending on the standard, URLs, paths, Domain Names and much more can be stored. Using this data, a user profile can be created to conceive future advertising.

Practical relevance[edit]

The integration of third party cookies is simpler than conventional cookies. No code needs to be used on the website itself, on which third party cookies are integrated. Instead, an ad is integrated on the website, which is located on the AdServer of the third-party provider. Let’s assume a user visits and there is an ad from a third party. If the user now visits a second website, where an ad is also stored by the same third-party provider, he can now trace (track) the user’s path.

The collection of user-related data using third party cookies is subject to criticism. Each website can monitor user behavior with their own first party cookies and link this data with the customer data, for example to send tailor-made advertising emails. In addition to that, third party cookies can be used to track what other websites the user visits. Data protectors complain about the lack of anonymity of such tracking models and fear that customer data will be misused. For advertisers, however, such models are helpful to display personalized ads.

The background for the current discussion is an initiative of the European Union, which could not yet be implemented in Germany due to the resistance of the Federal Ministry of Economics. The EU E-Privacy Directive stipulates that users may only be tracked if they have explicitly agreed to cookies on their computer (opt-in / opt-out). It is currently the responsibility of the user to suppress the use of cookies in the browser settings or with various additional programs.


Relevance to SEO[edit]

If a cookie is required in order to visit a website, the search engines cannot crawl this site Crawling. Cookies, which are based on targeted tracking, are generally not accepted by search engines anyway. Sites that have integrated such cookies may not be represented in Index or SERPs. In particular, sites with cookies based on JavaScript cannot be interpreted by the crawlers of search engines because these can only read HTML code and text characters.

However, millions of websites use cookies, even Google itself. Whether a search engine indexes websites with cookies or not depends largely on what the cookies are used for. Cookies can be useful when they prevent re-entering form data or to keep a basket current. Nevertheless, Google is currently working on a concept to replace third party cookies in the long term. AdID is designed to provide anonymous data to advertisers without affecting the privacy of users.

Web Links[edit]