Consumer data privacy has become a hot topic across industries and marketing tool providers. And now Google Analytics is taking a huge step toward improving customer data privacy but it could have a massive impact on advertisers and their ability to target their audience.
In 2023, Google will no longer log Internet Protocol (IP) addresses within its analytics platform. This means that advertisers may no longer be able to see the location of their website visitors.
IP addresses are unique identifiers that help digital tools understand more about a user, such as their location, type of device and network usage. This data helps advertisers reach the right customers with the right message.
Google says that the change comes in response to “a monumental shift in the way people behave on the internet and … how we measure that behavior.”
Impacts on Online Advertising
Instead of cookies, Google will use an event-based framework to create a data model that website managers can query easily. The good news for advertisers is that the new model will provide greater insights across various platforms, such as Google’s search engine, YouTube, Video 360 and more.
But providing better performance and easier searchability for website managers is not the focus of the change. Google states that it’s all about addressing changing privacy needs.
The change is happening in other areas of technology, such as Apple’s privacy-centric iOS changes that have given users greater control over what mobile applications can view and record.
Google says that the change comes during a time when IP tracking simply isn’t necessary anymore. Given the new technology available and ways we can still learn about customers without invading their privacy, the move is timely.
Changing Privacy Landscapes
The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) transformed marketing tracking and analytics as we know it. And with that regulation, many states in the US began taking a more serious stance about data privacy.
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Companies have already had to change the way they advertise and provide website visitors with more options when it comes to tracking cookies and using their information. The Google Analytics change will simply continue to shift online marketing toward new ways of doing things.
What You Should Be Doing to Prepare
Since the announcement of Google Analytics discontinuing IP addresses is still quite new and won’t take effect for many more months, there aren’t any real action items for online advertisers now.
But it does underscore the importance of working with skilled experts who know how to work around such changes. If your digital marketing agency isn’t talking about this change and how your advertising might be impacted, you might want to look at hiring a new agency that ensures you are up to date and compliant with all laws and regulations concerning data privacy.
New Light Digital is a full-service digital marketing agency prepared to help you reach your customers despite changes in data privacy and IP address tracking. We’ll use a modern approach to helping you reach who you need to reach when you need to reach them.
Schedule your free consultation now to learn more.