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Life in a cookie-less world

By January 27, 2023August 11th, 2023No Comments

Imagine you are a child and are told it will be a cookie-less world from now on. How boring would that sound? U’d feel like you were being robbed of your childhood.

But today, it’s not those cookies we will talk about. A cookie in an adult-tech world holds a different meaning altogether. And it has been debatable for so long – To have or not to have!

Understanding cookies

A cookie is a small text file that is stored on a user’s computer or mobile device by a website. The file contains information about the user’s browsing history, preferences, and login information. The website uses this information to remember the user’s settings, preferences, and activity. For example, when you visit the Nike website and save your favorite sneakers in the bag, you can see them again when you visit the site next time. Thanks to the cookies for that!

Cookies are also used to store surfing habits and thus help in personalizing content and advertising accordingly. So, when you visit Amazon, it uses cookies to make recommendations for you based on what you looked for earlier. Those Reebok trainers you saw on the web, now you see them in Facebook Ads and Insta reels too! Yes, cookies are partly responsible for that.

Cookies are created when a user visits a website, and the website sends the cookie to the user’s browser. The browser then stores the cookie and sends it back to the website each time the user visits it. This helps the website to remember user preferences and activity. It further enables businesses to tailor the content and advertising to suit the user’s need.

Benefits of Cookies

Cookies have several benefits that make browsing the web more convenient and personalized. Some of the main advantages of cookies include the following:

  1. Remembering user preferences:
    Cookies allow websites to remember a user’s preferences and settings, such as their language, time zone, and font size. It means that users don’t have to adjust their settings whenever they visit a website constantly.
  2. Keeping users logged in:
    Cookies are used to remember a user’s login information, allowing them to stay logged into a website even after they close their browser. This eliminates the need for users to enter their login information constantly.
  3. Personalized experiences:
    Cookies allow websites to track a user’s browsing history and preferences, which enables them to tailor the content and advertising to the user. This creates a more personalized experience for the user, as they are shown ads relevant to their interests. Remember when you surfed for sports wear Tees and multiple ads about sportswear started popping up each time you surfed the internet? Cookies help customers see ads for things they desire.
  4. Improving website functionality:
    Cookies can be used to store information that is necessary for certain website features to function correctly, such as shopping carts and online forms. Without cookies, these features would not work correctly.
  5. Better advertising:
    Cookies allow advertisers to track user behavior and preferences which helps them tweak their ads accordingly. This improves the effectiveness of online advertising, as users are more likely to be interested in the ads they are shown and may be much easier to convert from prospects to clients.
  6. Improving website performance:
    Websites can use cookies to store information that can help to improve website performance, such as the number of times a user has visited the website, the pages visited, and how long the user spent on the website.

Life without Cookies

Cookies have been criticized for their invasive nature. They work by tracking users’ browsing history and personal information, leading to privacy and data security concerns. Therefore, modern browsers allow users to control or limit the use of cookies and also allow them to delete them. Life in a cookie-less world would be vastly different from today’s world. Without cookies, many of the conveniences we take for granted on the internet would be gone.

Staying logged in to websites:
Without cookies, users would have to enter their login information every time they visit a website rather than being automatically logged in. This would be a significant inconvenience for users who frequently use the same websites, such as Amazon, Myntra, or Reebok.

Since cookies store information about a user’s browsing history and behavior, personalization of ads depends on them. Without cookies, websites would be unable to personalize their content, and users would see the same generic information and advertisements. This would indeed make their world boring. Imagine, you want to buy sneakers, but you are bombed with ads for watches, perfumes, and formal clothing! Your surfing experience is sure to go for a toss.

Online Shopping:
Cookies are used to remember items in a user’s shopping cart, and to show users relevant products based on their browsing history. Without cookies, users would have to manually add items to their cart every time they visit a website, and would not see personalized product recommendations.

The biggest concer for cookies has always been about privacy. In a world without cookies, users would have more control over their personal information and browsing history making them feel safer online.

Last words

Overall, a cookie-less world would be significantly different for both users and companies. While it would reduce privacy concerns, it would also lead to a loss of many conveniences and personalization on the internet. It would be a trade-off between privacy and convenience. It’s important to note that cookies are not inherently good or bad, but it’s their usage that can pose privacy concerns. Users can control the use of cookies in their browser settings and delete them when they don’t want them.

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