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What Are First-Party Cookies in Marketing: 7 Things You Should Know About Them

If you’re a small business owner, it’s important to be as informed as possible about the cookies used on your website. First-party cookies are just one type of cookie that you should know about. 

Cookies in themselves are highly useful for approaching a target market. But you want to use them responsibly to stay on the good side of Google and other search engine marketing platforms. In this blog post, we’ll give you seven things you should know about first-party cookies in marketing.

1. What Are First-Party Cookies?

First-party cookies are created by the website that you are visiting. They are stored on a computer by the user’s web browser when that user visits a website. These cookies allow the website to remember things about their visitors, such as preferences and login information.

There are convenience advantages to this, of course. Who wants to have to remember all the dozens of passwords that they have in circulation, or tote around a book with handwritten notes every time they want to visit a secure website? Marketers and business owners are actually doing their customers a favor by offering these options. 

2. How Do First-Party Cookies Work?

When a user comes to your website, the server sends a cookie to their web browser. The browser then stores the cookie on their computer. When they visit the website again, the browser sends the cookie back to the server. This allows the website to remember things about the user’s past experience that can prove beneficial moving forward.

First-party cookies, like any others, must be enabled. As long as you’re making your users aware, you allow them to set the tone for their experience through your site. 

3. What Are The Benefits Of Using First-Party Cookies?

There are several benefits of using first-party cookies. They allow your site to tailor the user’s experience, which can save them time when they revisit you on the web. They also help improve the overall experience by allowing the user to log in without having to enter their credentials each time. 

Additionally, first-party cookies can help improve the security of the user’s browsing experience by allowing websites to verify that they are who they say they are.

4. Are There Any Downsides To Using First-Party Cookies?

One potential downside of using first-party cookies is that they can be used to track the user’s online activity. However, most websites only use first-party cookies for benign purposes, such as remembering the user’s preferences or login information. If one is concerned about online privacy, there are ways to block or delete cookies from their web browser. 

Letting your customers know about these options and how to opt in or opt out will go a long way in building trust. You will likely be seen as one of “the good guys” and stay on their enabled list. 

5. How Can One Block Or Delete First-Party Cookies?

If a visitor is concerned about online privacy, there are ways to block or delete first-party cookies from their web browser. For example, in Google Chrome, they can go to Settings > Advanced > Content Settings > Cookies and select “Block all cookies.”  

They can also delete all cookies by going to Settings > Advanced > Clear Browsing Data and selecting “Cookies and other site data.” Again, it can be helpful to let your visitors know about these options upfront. 

The chances that they will block are small, especially if they’re finding their way to your website organically in the first place. That’s because they want to be there. You answered some question or provided an insight that drew their attention. 

6. What Are Some Examples Of First-Party Cookies?

Again, some examples of first-party cookies include login information, preferences, and browsing history. 

7. Should There Be Concerns About First-Party Cookies? 

To reiterate, most websites only use first-party cookies for benign purposes, such as remembering all the data that controls how the user wants to interact with and experience the website. If they have concerns about online privacy, there are ways to block or delete cookies from their browser, and it’s a relatively simple process that no self-respecting business owner should be afraid of.

If you’re in that position, commit to safeguarding the user’s data. They will repay you by entrusting you with relevant info that can help you better serve them and, hopefully, lead to a sale. 

Cookies Are Our Friends When Used Wisely

You enable first-party cookies on your website and store them on the user’s web browser with permission. As long as that “relationship” is open and honest, you’ll likely get zero pushback. After all, there are several benefits of using first-party cookies. But always remember to respect what the user wants in how you implement them, and offer full-disclosure at every junction. 

Need help implementing? Rise Local handles every aspect of your website from user preferences to content creation and promotion. We can help you connect with your customers in ways that are seamless, transparent, and, above all, valuable. To get started, contact us today. 

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