How to measure the impact of ITP 2.x

Alistair Johnstone

Data & Analytics Consultant

As users demand more transparency, choice and control over the use of their online data, our industry is having to shift to meet these expectations. This demand has resulted in privacy regulation such as GDPR, and browser updates such as ITP/ETP, that have all had an industry-wide impact to marketing.

Read about ITP 2.1

Our ecosystem is changing

These updates are challenging the way we think about marketing and although the change has been incremental, it shows no signs of slowing down.

What has been impacted?

Amongst other things, changes have affected:

  • Remarketing

  • Audience lists

  • Identity resolution

  • Frequency capping

  • Bidding

  • Attribution

  • View-through conversions

  • Click-through conversions

How do I measure the impact?

Key areas to consider

When analysing the impact if ITP/ETP it’s important to keep in mind:


Because Safari has a higher market share in mobile, the effects of ITP become clearer when isolating mobile traffic for analysis.

Incremental change

Take a look through your historical data to see how each browser update (e.g. ITP 1.0) has affected performance incrementally.

Tactics that rely on 3p cookies

For example, analysing tactics that leverage 3p cookies, such as remarketing, which are more likely to be affected by ITP will better highlight the impact.

Understanding the impact in Google Analytics

To understand how ITP has affected the performance of Safari traffic over time you can:

  • Look at reports where Browser is available as a dimension (or create your own Custom Reports)

  • Create segments by browser, and browser version (e.g. Safari 12.0).

Has performance changed over time in relation to ITP browser updates?

Understanding the impact in CM/DV360

To understand how ITP is impacting your media buys in Campaign Manager and DV360, look at spend and performance in report builder, adding in the Browser dimension (Browser/Platform in CM), along with delivery and conversion metrics, looking at how these have changed with the introduction of ITP browser changes.

What should I do next?

As the marketing ecosystem continues to evolve it’s important that you understand the limitations of your web analytics and multi-touch attribution solutions. Staying up-to-date with the latest changes is vital as the impact will likely get worse as more tracking methods are suppressed by the latest browser updates. Here are some recommendations for minimising the impact of these updates:

Use multiple measurement sources

Where possible, iCrossing recommend leveraging multiple measurement solutions to validate your data and make better informed decisions. For example, complimenting your site analytics data with more durable measurement sources, such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and evaluating the impact of media on sales using Media Mix Modeling (MMM).

Implement User ID

The User ID feature in Google Analytics will allow you to track users beyond ITP’s 7 day limit.

Invest in machine learning

You may want to invest in machine learning capabilities. ML solutions that use a wide mix of user signals and predictive modelling can operate in a cookie-less environment, bypassing current browser limitations.

Test and learn

Finally, we believe having test and learn framework in place will be essential if you want to know which of your strategies are driving performance. Learn to “use what works, where it works” by continuing to test new tactics and strategies using contextual data (e.g. Page Category, Keyword) and geographic data (e.g. Country, City) which do not rely on 3rd party cookies.

Want help with your web analytics? Please email us at results@icrossing.co.uk

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