The Definitive Guide to First-party Data

Updated on: January 4, 2024
First party data is a hot topic in adtech. And, as the world turns to first-party data as a foundation for creating audience segments and making ad decisions, publishers are faced with a pressing question: Where can they find high quality first-party data at scale and how to make the best out of it?

There’s no getting around it. First-party data is king. It offers the benefits of knowing who your visitors are, what they’re doing, and why they’re doing it. But there’s a major disconnect on first-party data. And many publishers don’t realize how valuable it can be on a strategic level for a company’s digital advertising efforts.

With the recent changes in how Google is removing third-party cookie support, first-party data is now playing an even more important role in helping publishers have a better chance of showing up in SERPs as well as ad revenue. This blog post will be all about how to get started with first-party and best practices to increase your overall revenue.

How to Get Started With a First-party Data Strategy?

First-party data is any data that you collect about your users on your website. This data can be generated from many different means, including events generated by web page interactions, content interactions, newsletter signups, contact forms, feedback surveys, and more.

The question is, how do you actually use this data?

Using the insights you get from the data, you can use it to build better content, create more effective ads, and attract your target audience. So, you need a structured approach to collecting and storing data and to make data easier to find and use.

Here’s a detailed post that will help you to identify what data points to collect, and how to collect and store them. Once you have all the data in one place, it is time to put them into use.

What’s the Role of a DMP in First-party Data Collection?

Data Management Platform (DMP) is a technology platform that enables data collection at scale. It manages all data touchpoints, transforms the data into formats that are ready for use, and then provides it to various applications that require data.

Tools like Google Analytics can help in collecting data from the web, but a dedicated data management platform can help you analyze all your offline first-party data in addition to online statistics. You can combine both – online and offline data, help your advertisers to view the complete journey, and serve targeted ads to each audience segment.

Read more about DMPs in this article.

How to Use Data and Analytics to Improve Content and Monetization?

Content is the most important factor in website traffic, and analytics is your best ally in understanding where your audience is coming from. That is why you should work on first-party data because it is highly accurate.

That said, first-party data combined with various metrics (such as page views, post tags, referral sources, etc.) will enhance your monetization efforts. Below are a few things you can do with first-party data and analytics:

  • Find the best ad placements for your website,
  • Narrate the right story,
  • Identify the right traffic acquisition source, and
  • Decide the right vertical for direct ad campaigns.

“In 2020, [first-party data options were] included when a strategic advertiser was asking for it or looking for it, but now it’s going to be much more proactive and default,”

– Ryan Pauley, Chief Revenue Officer, Vox Media (Src)

Read more about the use cases in this blog post.

How to Get the Best Out of the First-party Data?

The rise of first-party data and its use has exploded in recent years with many publishers acquiring new technology and choosing to use first-party data over third-party data. However, not all publishers know how to leverage their data to its fullest potential. Check out this blog post to learn about the best practices of collecting first-party data and running data-driven ad campaigns.

What’s Next?

It’s no secret that digital advertising is in the midst of an identity crisis. With third-party cookies going away, publishers are looking for alternatives to support their advertising businesses. The need for direct relationships with users, and data-driven approaches grow as brands and publishers try to inch their way toward a world built around privacy.

As first-party data continues to reign supreme in the adtech sphere, the time is now for publishers to take their relationship with users and advertisers to a new level and to rethink the technology they use. Have any questions on first-party data? Let us know in the comments.

News and Tips for Publishers

Get the inside scoop on publishing and programmatic with our 5-minute newsletter.