With iOS 14.5 released to the public earlier this year, iPhone and iPad users now have the ability to easily opt out of cross-site and cross-app tracking and targeting. New data from analytics firm Branch indicates that just 25% of users are opting in to tracking, which is causing panic in the advertising industry.
As detailed in a new report from Bloomberg, the impact is being felt in particular by Facebook advertisers. Facebook is reportedly no longer able to provide certain metrics to advertisers to help them know whether their ads are working:
Facebook advertisers, in particular, have noticed an impact in the last month. Media buyers who run Facebook ad campaigns on behalf of clients said Facebook is no longer able to reliably see how many sales its clients are making, so it’s harder to figure out which Facebook ads are working. Losing this data also impacts Facebook’s ability to show a business’s products to potential new customers. It also makes it more difficult to “re-target” people with ads that show users items they have looked at online, but may not have purchased.
While Facebook declined to respond to Bloomberg’s report, data from Branch shows that roughly 75% of iPhone users are now running iOS 14.5 or later with App Tracking transparency and that just 25% of those users have tapped on “Allow” when they see the prompt.
Facebook says that it is working on new features to help make up for the data lost due to App Tracking Transparency, including “new advertising features that require less data to measure an ad’s success.” The company is also reportedly exploring ways to deliver ads based on data stored on the user’s device.
“Apple’s policy is hurting the ability of businesses to use their advertising budgets efficiently and effectively, and the limitations being created are driven by Apple’s restrictions for their own benefit,” the spokesman added, noting that Facebook has tried to prep advertisers with notices, blogs and webinars. “We believe that personalized ads and user privacy can coexist.”
The full report at Bloomberg is well worth a read and provides more details from some of the advertisers affected by the changes.
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