Amazon could swing at Google with its own post-cookie solution

The news: Amazon is throwing its hat into the post-cookie measurement ring, per Ad Age.

  • The company recently posted (now deleted) job listings for a project called ID++, which the listing described as “the next generation of innovative products and services that will fuel the future growth of Amazon’s ad solutions in an identity-restricted world.”
  • Amazon spokespeople told Ad Age that ID++ is an in-development initiative creating “addressability models.”

The cookie crumbles: This year, Google will phase out third-party cookies on Google Chrome in a fundamental shakeup to the digital advertising industry. But its solution, the Privacy Sandbox, has not been well received, leaving space for competitors to emerge and offer their own alternatives.

  • Google formally kicked off the transition in January by turning off third-party cookies for 30 million Chrome users—just 1% of the total user base. The change was met with an outcry from the ad industry. The IAB Tech Lab released a report heavily criticizing Privacy Sandbox functionality and claiming the industry “isn’t ready” for the shift.
  • The two core complaints against Privacy Sandbox are that it lacks the detailed infrastructure and capabilities of cookies and that it allows for less precise targeting.
  • Google’s response to these complaints is that Privacy Sandbox is intended to be a base for developers to build more robust capabilities on top of; it also contends that cookies’ precise targeting doesn’t hold up to changing privacy standards worldwide. But still, the negative response to Privacy Sandbox indicated there’s room for a competitor.

The post-cookie market: That’s where Amazon can come in with ID++. The retailer will not be exempt from the same stringent privacy standards that are forcing Google’s hand, but if it can offer an identity solution that is viewed as more fleshed out than Privacy Sandbox, it can wedge its way into addressing a crucial function for online advertising.

  • If Amazon and other competitors burst onto the scene with their own “identity-restricted” ad solutions, the future of digital advertising could look a lot like what’s happened to the video ad landscape.
  • For the uninitiated: When longtime TV measurement leader Nielsen had its accreditation stripped following pandemic miscounts, TV networks struck their own partnerships with measurement competitors, leading to a fractured market that industry players have organized with new standards.

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