Google to require parallel ad tracking for online marketing
In an effort to make user experiences safer and faster, Google announced that come this October, it will require all advertisers using click measurement features on AdWords to employ parallel tracking. The announcement comes as another change in Google ad procedures looms: when it's new update comes out in July, Chrome will start labeling all HTTP (as opposed to HTTPS) sites as "not secure."
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Auto-play ads get temporary reprieve
Google has rescinded a policy announced in January that stopped video ads from playing automatically without the user's request. The move was in response to consumer complaints about unexpected audio blaring out when certain pages are loaded. However, blocking auto-play caused unforeseen problems with some apps and games. Google is working on solutions to those problems, and plans to reinstate the policy in October.
Survey raises questions about how much contact is too much
Amazon and Groupon topped a list of survey responses in which consumers indicated which brands were e-mailing them too frequently. While this suggests customers can be annoyed by repeated contacts, the flip side is that Amazon and Groupon were among just four brands (Old Navy and Apple were the other two) that succeeded in significantly increasing customer engagement over time.
New Massachusetts tax on cookies could complicate online retailing
A key concept in the ability of states to tax purchases is establishing whether or not the retailer has a physical presence in the state. Massachusetts recently passed a law that would consider retailers using cookies on web sites visited by Massachusetts residents as effectively having a presence in the state for tax purposes. If this law holds up to legal challenges and is emulated by other states, it could considerably complicate online commerce by requiring retailers to track where users are when cookies are used and assess the applicable state tax accordingly.
Facebook's "clear history" option could limit user tracking
Facebook recently announced the introduction of a "clear history" option that would allow users to be notified as to what information online marketers are tracking about them on Facebook, erase that history, and restrict that tracking going forward. While some search engines have long offered such privacy options, introducing this limit on information use to Facebook poses a new set of challenges to online marketers.
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