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GDPR impact on tracking and cookies

The impact of GDPR on online tracking is measurable by evident decline in tracking calls per page on many sites, for some sites the ridiculous amounts of tracking calls has been effectively neutered, this an apparent benefit for all website visitor.

Pre GDPR tracking and cookies

textPrior to GDPR the amount of tracking calls and website cookies was in some cases utterly ridiculous, as well as being a sure sign of digital harvesters in play, without consideration of the integrity of website visitors.

A sample image taken a few months prior to GDPR kicking in 2018 reveals the world of pre-GDPR tracking, a whooping count of 94 tracking calls slowing down the visitor experience loading just a single page view.

Most of tracking calls were related to advertising, which quite evidently equals to a fussilade of 3rd party cookies and data leakage out of the website owners control. Additionally many of these tracking calls were slow loading as well as being unsecure, essentially without any benefit from the visitor perspective. Enter GDPR!

Post GDPR tracking and cookies

textPost GDPR meant website owners needed to a) really consider what was being tracked and for what reason, but also b) ensure that consent is given by the visitor. Any visitor facing a consent request for 94 advertising tracking solutions leans towards the result being a rather solid loss of consent.

A website owner following the requirements of GDPR has nothing to do with virtue, but it does benefit the visitors of that site in several ways.

Another consequence of this change is a notable drop of cookies in browsers, as well as a welcome reduction in tracking requests sent out from visiting browsers. The previously open-handed distribution of visitor data has thanks to GDPR effectively sanitized the tracking exposed on visitors. In no way does this mean the use of browser plugins to filter unwanted tracking calls or cookies will decline, the upside is rather that those plugins will spend less time handling a fussilade of cookies and tracking calls on each requested page.

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