iPhone users have probably noticed a few new features since Apple rolled out iOS 14 updates in September 2020. And marketers have probably lived through a few headaches dealing with the response from Facebook, Google, and other notable marketing platforms. Just as everyone seemed to get a grasp on that update, Apple announced the plan for the iOS 15 update. So what are these updates and what does it mean for your Shopify marketing strategy?
Recently, people have learned much more about just how much of their personal data is shared on the internet (thanks to The Great Hack on Netflix and, well, those targeted ads you get after you just mention a product in the general vicinity of your phone without even Googling it)—from your online browsing habits, weirdly specific interests you may have, to whether or not you’re in the market for a new car lease. As a human, it may make you want to throw your phone off a cliff and move off the grid to live in the middle of nowhere.
As a marketer, you’ve probably known about this way before it was cool to be aware of the sheer amount of information stored about you. Cookies and third-party data served as a great way to customize an experience for users that personalized the content they saw. Once your data started getting sold and shared, things got a little too personal. Marketers also know that while this information is used to serve you ads that you’ll find super relevant (or, at least, we think you’ll find super relevant), all of this data is really anonymous.
Someone setting up an advertising campaign would never be able to tell that Sally from Tallahassee buys a lot of stuff through Facebook Ads, “Love” reacts to every picture of a cat on their newsfeed, and also spends a lot of time interacting with X Facebook group. We are all Sally, but we don’t know Sally.
The amount of data marketers were able to use to target people was convenient in the sense that you could target the right people for a low cost, but people lost a lot of privacy because of it. Now that The People are aware and super creeped out about data sharing, Apple decided to give some power back to the people. Ok, so, what exactly did iOS 14 updates change for Apple users?
So, no big deal, right? Wrong. This simple update waged a war among the big tech world companies because this makes it harder for them to profit off of you. C’est la vie.
The biggest aspect of this change for businesses is going to come from shifting away from third-party data collection and moving towards first-party or zero-party data. The difference? Customers will give you their information directly but only if they want to share it.
This shift has already changed a lot in terms of advertising capabilities, mainly cost, ad targeting, ad cost, and ad measurement—especially on Facebook.
Marketers work in an ever-changing industry, and that won’t be changing anytime soon. The shift towards privacy likely isn’t going to change either, so now it’s time to adapt.
This also serves as a time where marketers may want to shift towards other avenues. As advertising on Facebook becomes more and more expensive for businesses who have relied on it, where do they go when they’re spending more to get a quick one-off sale than they can afford to make a profit? How do you shift strategy for acquisition and growth for your business in your Shopify marketing strategy?
While there’s no going back to the way things used to be, there’s also no going back to the way things are right now. In the coming months, and likely even years, there will be a continuation in strides to advance privacy for the people. Early in June, Apple released the announcement of iOS 15 and what everyone can expect to change. While this won’t roll out until fall 2021, we already have a pretty good idea of what this will look like.
While marketers are sure to notice the effects of privacy changes pretty much everywhere, email marketing is where this will have the most impact. Users will be able to hide their emails from companies for enhanced privacy, thus taking away from measurement for email marketing.
Apple’s Mail Privacy Protection and the users ability to hide their email is going to completely change the email marketing game. Now, email marketing platforms like Klaviyo and MailChimp, will no longer be able to track opens, forwards, and location-based metrics. While users will have to opt into this, we’ve seen with Apple’s iOS 14 updates that a lot of people likely will err on the side of privacy.
The Hide My Email option will, again, make things a bit more difficult for email marketing. With this, users can sign up for email offers with an Apple-generated email address. When the email comes through to the generated email, it will be forwarded to your email. Because of this, deliverability will likely be impacted.
While this is absolutely going to change how marketers utilize email marketing, it’s not time to abandon ship. You just need to shift your Shopify marketing strategy and prepare for what’s to come.
As a human, these changes are a move forward for more privacy in your day to day life. As a marketer, this means you’ll have to shift your Shopify marketing strategy to adapt to these changes when they fully roll out. Staying up to date with the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing can be difficult. The team at Responsival can help. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help keep your strategy up to date.
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