Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention and What Marketers can do About It

By now, you are probably painfully aware of the fact that Apple has released a feature for iOS Safari called “Intelligent Tracking Prevention” and that it has sent online marketers into an absolute frenzy. For years advertisers have relied on the fact that their first party cookies would never expire and that they could always count on the them to be there if the user has not intentionally cleared them or decided to navigate in private browsing. The idea that these previously sturdy fixtures in the shopper’s browser will now have a maximum inactive lifespan of 30 days in Safari on iOS devices has left many marketers nervously asking the question “what on earth do we do about this?”.

If this is you, don’t panic. Everything is going to be ok.

What can you do to ensure that the marketing experience you have carefully crafted for your shoppers is not sent back to square one when their cookie expires? The answer is Customer Identity Resolution through SmarterHQ.

What is Customer Identity Resolution?
In this day and age, shoppers are interacting with your brand from all sorts of different angles. During their morning coffee they might be scrolling through on their mobile browser. During lunch they might continue their search on their desktop computer. During their evening Netflix session they could be perusing your products on their tablet. Before they go to bed, they might pull out their laptop and take a quick peek at the products that caught their eye earlier in the day. In the past, these sessions would have appeared to be four distinct shoppers browsing the site for short periods of time throughout the day and would have been treated as such. Customer Identity Resolution gives you the insight to understand that all four of these separate data streams are actually one (clearly engaged!) customer and deliver marketing to them that considers the full breadth of their shopping behavior across devices and browsers.

That’s great, but what does it have to do with ITP?
If an iOS shopper has not been to your site in over 30 days, the cookies that have been mounted in Safari will expire. When the user does eventually return to your website, they will appear to be a brand new shopper with no history and no identity. Without Customer Identity Resolution, this is the end of the story. Their historical data is lost and you will have to build from the ground up to deliver a personalized experience. Customer Identity Resolution through SmarterHQ bridges the gap between their previous sessions and their new streams of data. As soon as the shopper logs in to their account, exposes their email address, clicks through a targeted message, or takes an action on the site that would allow us to identify them, we are back in business. The Shopper and their brand new set of cookies will be re-associated with the historical data we have for them, allowing you to provide a rich and personalized marketing experience drawing from behavioral information that would have otherwise been out of scope.

Customer Identity Resolution is a critical success factor
If Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention is any indication of what is to come in the world of behavioral tracking, then resolving the identity of shoppers without relying on indefinitely persistent cookies is going to be a critical success factor in providing truly personalized marketing experiences for your shopper base. SmarterHQ has made this incredibly easy by building Customer Identity Resolution into the very fabric of our platform which will allow you, the marketer, to focus on engaging shoppers and driving revenue!

Want to learn more about Customer Identity Resolution? Request a Demo to talk directly to one of our representatives today! 



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Creating consistency across your two biggest marketing channels means a better customer experience. A better customer experience means improved conversion, repeat business and long-term loyalty.

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