Ahead of an upcoming developer conference, Google announced it will let Android users opt out of being tracked by the apps they download from the Google Play Store.
This move mirrors Apple’s roll-out of iOS 14, which gave consumers the option to opt out of tracking via the IDFA, or device identifier that tracks consumer behavior across apps.
According to the announcement, this will be launched via a Google Play services update in “late 2021.”
Why is this important?
Since Apple’s iOS 14 announcement in 2020, advertisers have been waiting to hear how Google will respond to its competitor. With all three major smartphone players (iPhone, Android & Samsung) using either the Google Play Store or Apple Store, this means nearly all social media app users will have the option to disable tracking.
Considering that more than half of all worldwide web traffic so far this year was generated via mobile devices, the option to disable tracking will significantly impact first-party data.
What is the impact on brands?
This update will further decrease audience size, bringing higher CPMs and less qualified targeting via website data, in the same way Apple’s iOS 14 does. However, the severity of this decrease will depend upon whether this switch will be automatically pushed to users, or if this switch is simply an option users will have to manually turn off in settings.
What action should brands take?
First party data will be the name of the game in this privacy-first era. We recommend brands continue to find ways to leverage and foster first-party audiences, whether by creating a newsletter that requires email, a Facebook Store where shoppers interact, or leveraging video ads that can track people who watch most of the video or engage with your ad.
If you’d like help identifying the best approach for your brand and your specific audience, please contact us. Our experts are available to help.
POV by Acronym’s Paid Media Team