Say hello to Google's FLoC
Google says that advertising is necessary to keep the web an open platform, which we don't disagree with. Many consumers would argue that point and also ask company's like Google "How did you get my information and what are you going to do with it?". Great question, thats what we are here to tell you and how FLoC is using that data.
Google's FLoC, or Fundamentals of Library and Collection, is a system that helps Google Ads better target users with relevant advertisements. Interest-based advertising has been around for many years, but FLoC helps make it more accurate and efficient.
How FLoC Works
Google takes all the data it has on users, whether it's from search history, YouTube viewing habits, or other Google services, and creates a "profile" for each user. This profile is called a FLoC ID, the ID carry's over to cohorts which we will get into later. This profile includes age, gender, interests, and other demographic information. Google then uses this data to show users ads that are most relevant to those users with a high intent to take action.
Google's interest categories are used by advertisers to help them better target their ads. These categories include things like sports, technology, health, and more. For example if a user sees an ad for a hotel in Jamaica while watching a Jamaican dance video on YouTube, Google will know that right now that user is interested in Jamaican culture and seeing an ad with Jamaican music event
Why the drastic change?
Measuring online website traffic is getting more and more difficult with privacy laws and changes in technology. The biggest change in technology is the slow fall of browser based tracking and the impact it already has had on other channels like Facebook Ads. Browser based tracking basically sends a cookie to the user and collects that information passed back, but this is something that has been hurt by companies like Apple when they announced the new privacy updates in iOS 14.
FLoC will give Google the ability to measure data in large groups of users who fall under similar online actions, intent levels and interest topics. This will also eliminate the need for browser based tracking. FLoC creates a multi-dimensional mathematical representation of all potential web browsing histories. Translation, Google is collecting data on a massive scale to target and deliver ads and measure experiences more efficiently
How does this change privacy?
Many people have informed Google that they do not want this change, because they are concerned about the data collected on individuals and how there are no GDPR provisions to define FLoC's activities or how it collects data... so it's yet to be seen how the general public feels once they understand how these changes will affect their data preferences.
How does affect Google Ads?
Anyone who has used Google Ads before can see how much better Google's ads are when targeted correctly. FLoC helps Google Ads target key user profiles with relevant ads to increase engagement from users. If you have a business that caters to a specific gender, age group or interest level, then utilizing these audience demographics is very important for your online presence.
Currently only 0.5% of all Chrome users are in the beta FLoC trail, so it is yet to be seen how this will impact the strength of Google Ads. In our experience anytime Google rolls something out big like this, there is a very strong and compelling reason Google does so.
We will keep you updated if anything else changes with Google Ads, but don't worry too much. In the meantime, get ready for some pretty big industry changes to come.