NOTE: This post is updated monthly as we track first-party adoption. Check back regularly.

Unlocking the potential of first-party IDs is the single most important opportunity for digital advertisers in the current market landscape. When we started tracking first-party ID adoption in late 2020, the question facing the industry was, “What’s next? What can replace the third-party cookie?”. At the time, we had just finalized our first proof-of-concept end-to-end campaign test run purely on first-party IDs. It confirmed what the industry was still uncertain about — that a sufficiently robust technology platform could and would support first-party-driven programmatic advertising.  

A lot has changed since 2020. We’ve updated this post several times as new opportunities such as the re-engagement of Safari and Firefox users have arisen, and as the market has caught up and embraced first-party IDs as a core pillar of digital advertising’s future. We’ve also expanded significantly on our initial proof-of-concept and now have a robust set of client cases consisting of dozens of real-world case studies (see them HERE). We’ve also continued to lead the industry and raised the bar for transparency by commissioning PwC for a series of tests and validation of the performance of our identity solution, ID Fusion (see the report HERE).

When we started tracking first-party ID adoption, we focused on looking at the top 1,000 publishers sending at least 1% of their traffic with a first-party ID in a lot of major markets. The question at the time? Would publishers support first-party IDs. By September 2021 the answer was a clear YES. With more than 50% passing at least some first-party IDs. By the end of 2022 that number grew to over 80% in most markets.  

We are continuing to track these figures monthly and the trend continues to show not only that the vast majority of top 1,000 publishers in most markets are first-party ready, but that number continues to grow.

While the full discontinuation of third-party cookies in Chrome has been delayed several times, the real-world reality for most advertisers is that the pool of third-party cookies has now dwindled significantly and only offers a sliver of the value they once did. Third-party cookies have been a useful, but flawed, piece of the equation for a long time. With Safari and Firefox already blocking third-party cookies and Chrome increasingly transitioning – results-oriented marketers are already embracing alternatives.

What Comes Next?

As sophistication within the industry evolves, so does the demand for buying on first-party IDs. To this end, it’s not simply enough to know that 80–90% of top 1,000 publishers CAN support first-party IDs. Clients increasingly want to better understand what the scale, coverage, and supply look like for their market. After all, just because I have a driver’s license and CAN drive, doesn’t mean I have the car, the gas, or the road to drive on.

We’re at the leading edge of this evolution in the industry with our multi-award-winning ID Fusion capabilities providing a clear alternative to other options currently on the market. We’re not only helping clients re-engage and advertise to high-value Safari and Firefox users which have been inaccessible or undervalued for years.  We’re providing technology that helps our clients bridge more than 40 major identity and cleanroom solutions that have arisen over the past several years.

From Goal Based KPI driven campaign buying, to first-party algorithms, to scaled first-party campaigns – we’re now able to deliver results that scale (see the cases HERE).

We’re also seeing common trends across markets where we can see that the top 10 domains on average provide 60-90% of their traffic with first party IDs. Curious about your market? Reach out to a member of our sales team. 

Key takeaways for your marketing strategy

  • Adform is live with first-party IDs and we’re seeing great results. The technology works and is externally verified with constantly improving technology.    
  • Adform ID Fusion is uniquely able to add incremental value with the adoption of first-party IDs.   
  • First-party ID setups work seamlessly alongside other setups in Adform FLOW, meaning they are not mutually exclusive. This includes legacy support for third-party IDs and cross-device.   
  • We’ve now passed the 80% threshold in most markets signaling that scaled supply is rapidly becoming available.   

Want to learn more about first-party IDs and related Adform thought leadership including the latest white papers, interviews, case studies, and more? 

Read More Here

For Adform clients eager to discuss unlocking the full potential for Adform FLOW’s full enterprise capabilities, and eager to get started running first party campaigns immediately, please reach out to your account manager.