Google is upping the ante for privacy once again. At its annual developer conference (known as Google I/O), Google announced a number of chan ges aimed at enhancing user privacy. They include two new tools that give users even more control over their data:
- Results about the user in Search. With a new tool to accompany updated removal policies, people can more easily request the removal of Google Search results containing their contact details — such as phone numbers, home addresses, and email addresses.
- My Ad Center. Toward the end of 2022, Google will launch more controls for users’ ads privacy settings: a way of choosing which brands to see more or less of, and an easier way to choose whether to personalize a user’s ads. My Ad Center gives users more control over the ads they see on YouTube, Search, and their Discover feed, while still being able to block and report ads. Users will be able to choose the types of ads they want to see — such as fitness, vacation rentals or skincare — and learn more about the information Googles use to show them to users.
Google elaborated on the release of the new search privacy tool as follows:
When you’re searching on Google and find results about you that contain your phone number, home address, or email address, you’ll be able to quickly request their removal from Google Search — right as you find them. With this new tool, you can request removal of your contact details from Search with a few clicks, and you’ll also be able to easily monitor the status of these removal requests.
Google said the search privacy feature will be available in the coming months in the Google App, and users can also access it by clicking the three dots next to individual Google Search results.
What Advertisers Should Do
The new privacy controls in and of themselves could help advertisers. Why? Because conceivably, users who choose which types of ads they want to see will be more engaged and interested in the ones they do in fact see – which could increase purchase intent. That said, advertisers need to look at the big picture: these developments are another sign that Google is intensifying its commitment to a privacy-first world. And that starts with Google’s depreciation of third-party cookies on Chrome — which is one of the hottest stories in ad tech event though it has not happened yet.
Google will phase out tracking of third-party cookies on Chrome in 2023. And 2023 is coming sooner than you think. The Google Privacy Sandbox projects the following timeline for phasing out third-party cookies:
- September/October 2022: Google will announce the transition timeline and the actual date when Chrome will retire third-party cookies.
- November 2022-April 2023: Google will provide insights and guidance for businesses to adjust to the upcoming change; they will publish playbooks and other documentation.
- May-August 2023: Google will officially retire cookies within Chrome.
It’s important to come up with a transition plan now to measure campaign performance in a world without third-party cookies on Chrome. Yes, Google’s original timeline was delayed – but the 2023 date seems to be holding firm. Contact your advertising partner to ask how they’re managing the transition (at True Interactive, we’re doing the heavy lifting for our clients).
Are you ready?