WebTrends: 12 Percent of Visitors Reject Third-Party Cookies

Last year, the proportion of Web site visitors rejecting third-party cookies increased threefold, from around 4 percent in January to 12 percent by December, according to new research by analytics company WebTrends. The third-party cookie rejection rate remained at around 12 percent through the end of last month, according to the report.

For the report, "Accurate and Actionable Web Analytics," WebTrends looked at records of about five billion visitor sessions a month across thousands of clients' Web sites, said Jeff Seacrist, WebTrends director of product marketing.

The report comes at a time when the industry is still reeling from other studies showing that consumers delete their cookies far more frequently than had been imagined. One report issued last month by Jupiter Research showed that 40 percent of consumers deleted cookies at least monthly.

The WebTrends research showed that third-party rejections occurred most frequently rn the retail category, in which 16.7 percent of visitors now decline third-party cookies. Other categories with high rejection rates include telecoms (15.4 percent), health care (14.7 percent), manufacturing (13.3 percent), transportation (13 percent), and media (12 percent).

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WebTrends also intends to launch an upgrade to its product at the end of the month. One of the new features is an offering that will allow publishers to do more analytics using their own first-party cookies, rather than third-party cookies placed on the site by an outside company.

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