Marketers Sleepwalking into Measurement Nightmare, According to New Report

Marketers Sleepwalking into Measurement Nightmare, According to New Report
  • 97% concerned loss of third-party cookies will impact ability to understand marketing effectiveness
  • 83% still reliant on cookies to support marketing
  • 79% believe cookies provide accurate data
  • 61% intend to implement a solution in the next 12 months
  • 51% claim finding a solution is a medium priority

A new study conducted by Corvidae, in partnership with Censuswide, has found that retail marketers aren’t sufficiently prepared for the impending removal of third-party cookies by Google.

Google has announced they are pushing ahead with the change from Q3 2023 – which will have some big ramifications for marketers and their ability to accurately track activity.

Over 80% of marketers are still reliant on cookies to support their marketing activities and measurement, with just over half (51%) stating that finding a new solution is only a medium priority for them.

85% shared that they believe there are sufficient solutions for the removal of cookies. This is despite almost half stating they will be using Google’s replacement technologies, which have been proven to be ineffective through recent case study tests.

Attribution report - third-party cookies

The new “Marketing in the Cookieless Future: How the Removal of Third-Party Cookies will Impact Retail” research commissioned by Corvidae surveyed 150 CMOs, Marketing Directors, Performance Marketing Directors, Ecommerce Directors, Heads of Analytics and Heads of Data within the retail sector, identifying how retailers are preparing for the change, as well as the challenges they will face in 2023 and beyond.

For marketers, making the move from a technology that has been the bedrock for reporting and analytics for decades is difficult. And that’s reflected in the results from the survey, as a quarter have placed finding a replacement solution as either low priority or not on their radar at all.

From the results, it is clear that many businesses are still burying their head in the sand. 75% of recent event attendees also stated that they didn’t believe Google would even remove third-party cookies at all.

With 97% of respondents sharing they are concerned that the loss of third-party cookies will impact their ability to understand marketing effectiveness, the clock is ticking for businesses to begin making the move to solutions that are ready for the cookieless future and that will stand the test of time.

Are cookie replacements cut out for the future? The evidence is damning

Despite the urgency to find a new solution seemingly lax amongst marketers, a disparity between certain functions was highlighted within the results.

eCommerce Directors (38%) and Performance Marketing Directors (43%) have it marked as a high priority, which is far above the level of respondents as a whole. This could be caused by their proximity to marketing reporting and optimisation, compared to other functions surveyed.

Whether there is urgency or not, newly adopted solutions need to be fit for purpose. And the report findings around this topic show that this likely won’t be the case for most.

Attribution report - GA4

The headline statements include:

  • 89% are confident identity graphs and tools are a compliant solution
  • 84% plan to make the switch to GA4
  • 43% reviewing Google’s replacement technologies

The majority still believe they can rely on tools like the IAB’s Unified ID – already ruled to be uncompliant with GDPR by the EU – or Chrome’s tools, despite their likely 2% opt in rate.

While most intend to use GA4 in the future despite the 2022 EU finding ruling it uncompliant under GDPR and local DPAs in France, Italy, Austria and other EU countries declaring it illegal, creating hundreds of legal cases already.

With marketers, and especially those in retail, under pressure to drive greater results with less to play with, ensuring measurement stays unaffected by the impending removal of cookies is crucial.

“This report shows that continued reliance on dominant industry analytics platforms from Google and Adobe is no-longer viable for ad measurement and optimisation in a cookie free world. Embracing innovative AI platforms like delivers huge returns and puts control back in the hands of advertisers as well as offering a safe, compliant data foundation going forwards.” said Chris Liversidge, CEO & Founder at Corvidae.

“Using AI for measurement has given our customers revenue increases of over 70% and acquisition costs more than 20% lower than cookie-based solutions. Over the course of the next year as the cookie phase-out continues there will be increasingly large gaps between the winners and losers and I expect to see major disruption in the status quo for brands who adopt early and those who lag behind.”

About Corvidae:
Corvidae is the only cookieless attribution tool on the market, using patented AI technology to completely remove the need for first- and third-party cookies. Unlike other marketing measurement software, Corvidae rebuilds analytics data from the ground up, providing marketers with unparalleled data accuracy that drives real value and reduces wasted spend.

Created by performance marketing agency QueryClick, Corvidae was built after the realisation that no other analytics software could provide a single source of truth – or track user across multi-channel, multi-device journeys.

About this report:
In April 2023, Censuswide, commissioned by Corvidae, surveyed 150 CMOs, Marketing Directors/VPs, Ecommerce Directors/VPs, Head of Data, Head of Analytics and Performance Marketing Directors within the UK. The survey covered topics ranging from existing knowledge of the change, solutions being considered and the main challenges businesses foresee in the cookieless future. Respondents of the survey were all working within the Retail and eCommerce space.

About Censuswide:
Censuswide is an international market research consultancy. They work with insights, communication and marketing teams in the world’s most respected companies to deliver rigorously tested data sets that provide their clients with unique insights.

Julie Molloy, Head of Marketing

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