A couple of months ago, I wrote up a report that talked about the marketing technology behind $35 billion in 2011 holiday e-commerce sales. I pulled the data from Ghostery, a browser plug-in that allows users to understand what trackers and beacons are on individual websites. After I released the report and got some initial traction, Evidon, the owners of Ghostery reached out and asked me to be a guest editor for their Global Tracker Report. Fast forward to today, their first report is out and you should download it. Also, the New Media Age wrote a solid piece on the report.
Not only is it a good read about the current state of privacy, advertising technology, and data, it’s a piece that both the novice and advanced marketer can understand.
Based on the data, the top 5 most prolific trackers are owned by both Google and Facebook. Google has 3 of the top 5 including Google Analytics, Google Adsense, and Google +1. Facebook includes both Facebook Social Plug-ins and Facebook Connect. It’s amazing to see the dominance of Google on this list, as their Google Analytics tags are down on a disproportionate amount of websites scanned by Ghostery.
I’ve recently stated on this blog that Google is both the house & the card player (in relation to a casino). They know the odds, the cards in the deck, in the current hand, and are playing the game. The more and more data that Google has access to, the more they can optimize for a Google beneficial outcome. Note however, this argument falls a bit when you realize that Google can do this short term, but will lose advertisers long-term if (Google) only optimize outcomes for themselves.
If you have a second, download the report to learn more.