3 Reasons to Kill 3rd-Party Trackers on Your Site RIGHT NOW

For decades, marketers have tracked user behavior online. But that data-gorging is coming to an end. Remove 3rd-party marketing tags from your site TODAY to better protect user data and improve page loading times.

Published: Oct 27, 2019
Web browsers are increasingly adding features that protect what's private

Imagine you walk into a store in town. They thrust a hundred-page document into your hands and ask you to sign before you proceed. Hesitatingly, you do so, hand the document back and head towards the sale items.

In the meantime, the store owner shares with his partners and partners of partners information about you: which stores you checked out before, how often you come in, your e-mail address, maybe even whether you belong to a knitting group on Facebook or might be expecting a child.

Yet that’s precisely what many websites do. And they do so with your consent whenever they ask you to accept affiliate and third-party cookies, obfuscating all the details in mile-long legalease – all with a simple click on an “OK” button.

Here are 3 reasons to remove 3rd-party marketing tags from your site TODAY: privacy, performance and pain.

1. Technology is Just Going to Block Trackers Anyway

As Mike Monteiro writes in Ruined by Design: How Designers Destroyed the World and What We Can Do to Fix It:

“When no one else around you is asking the hard questions, when no one else around you is standing up for the people who entrust their personal information and their relationship statuses to your service… that’s when we need you the most.”

Fortunately, an ever-growing list of companies are baking privacy controls into their browsers, essentially using privacy as a selling point.

Cake Browser for mobile
Cake Browser for mobile
Apple's <a href='https://www.apple.com/safari/'>Safari</a>
<a href='https://www.samsung.com/global/galaxy/apps/samsung-internet/'>Samsung Internet</a>
Brave Browser
Mozilla Firefox
Mozilla Firefox

Ad blocker use is also on the rise with a quarter of US users already blocking ads.

2. Third-Party Trackers Cripple Page Loading Times

Each 3rd-party tag you add to a site results in more data scurrying back and forth on the internet and more work for your user’s browsers and devices to perform. Each additional tag means:

Pingdom analyzed the web performance of the top 50 news sites that use 3rd-party trackers and found:

“[The] average load time for the top 50 sites was 9.46 seconds with trackers loading, and 2.69 seconds without.”

Ad-blocker extension Ghostery reported in 2018:

“On average, websites that contained active trackers took twice as long to load [emphasis added] (19 seconds) compared to websites with trackers blocked by Ghostery (8.6 seconds). Additionally, it took more than 10 seconds to load nearly 60 percent of webpages with trackers and 5 percent took over one minute to load.”

Bravery uses performance savings by blocking 3rd-party as a main selling point.

Screenshot of Brave.com
Screenshot of Brave.com

3. Third-Party Tracking Kills User Experience on the Web

According to Marketing Land,

“Marketers have relied on third-party tracking cookies for the last 25 years to track consumer behavior online. Nearly all ad tech and martech platforms use cookies for targeting, retargeting, display advertising and behavioral marketing in general.”

What has the ever-increasing data greed led to? A horrible user experience across the webscape like this:

Ads on Spiegel Online
Scroll down to get to the interesting stuff on Spiegel Online
Ads on Spiegel Online
Here I am trying to read up on Brexit and they try to sell me a train ticket via on Spiegel Online
Ads on pcmag.com
pcmag.com has so many banner ads, it's hard to find the actual content
Ads on Business Insider
Completely irrelevant ad on Business Insider
Ads on YouTube
Am I seeing ads like this on YouTube because I checked out a Chinese travel site a week ago?

In the European Union, strict data protection regulations require website owners to obtain consent to process personal data. That has given rise to the now-omnipresent cookie consent layer:

Cookie banner on chron.com
Cookie consent overlay at chron.com on mobile are so long, it's easier to just accept everything and get on with it
Cookie banner on chron.com, desktop
Cookie consent overlay at chron.com on desktop

In Short…

Just kill the 3rd-party trackers today to better protect your users’ data and improve page loading times. If you’ve got to display ads, consider context-sensitive banners that don’t utterly ruin the user experience.

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