How the iOS 14 User Privacy Update Might Affect Digital Marketing

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How the iOS 14 User Privacy Update Might Affect Digital Marketing

How Will the User Privacy Focused iOS 14 Update Affect Your Business? 


Hey there. My name is John King, owner and president at, digital marketing agency. I’m excited to visit with you today a little bit about the new iOS 14 privacy update being rolled out this year by Apple. Let’s go ahead and jump into it.


How many iPhones do you think are currently circulating throughout the world? Back in 2016, Apple actually announced that they had sold their one billionth iPhone, and in 2018 Apple reported that more than 900 million iPhones were being used on an active daily basis. What does this mean for you? It means that there is a super high probability that your ideal customer, whether you’re in digital goods or whether you’re a home service industry business owner, your ideal customer has a high probability of using an iPhone themselves, which is really important to take note to some changes that are coming this year that will directly affect how data is being shared to companies like us from users who are using the iPhone.


iOS 14 will be soon pushing an update that allows iPhone users to first restrict companies from collecting their data and tracking their online activity. Currently, iPhone users have the ability to disable tracking. However, it’s not first asked by the user if this is okay or not. Here’s what I mean. If you’re using your iPhone right now, there’s nothing that prompts you to look at a warning that says, “Hey, here’s how Facebook is tracking your activity,” or, “Here’s how Google is or a different ad service.” Instead, you have to go out of your way as the iPhone user to your settings and to your privacy controls and actually go and restrict access to these apps. While, instead of that being the case, now with the iOS 14 update, before apps can begin tracking your data, you first have to give permission.


Here’s an example of what this might look like. On Facebook, in order for Facebook to be able to track your activity and serve you personal ads, it has to ask you for permission first. Data scientists across the world all agree that the majority of people will likely opt out of personal ads and data tracking. This will have a couple of effects on you and your business specifically. Let’s look at how some of those effects might take place.


Have you ever gone to Amazon, looked at a product, and maybe an hour later have seen those products show up in your Facebook feed or somewhere else within an online advertisement? This is called website retargeting. Let’s say that you’re a home service business and you provide air conditioning repairs and you want to be able to get your personalized ads in front of somebody after they’ve come to your website. This is called website retargeting and this is something that might be affected with the iOS 14 update. That means that when people come to your website, if that person is using an iPhone and they opted out of data tracking, that means that you won’t be able to receive the necessary information to know whether or not you should retarget them with ads on a social media platform.


This would also have a pretty big impact on personalized ads in general. For instance, have you ever gone through, let’s say, to a news article and you’re reading content and throughout the content you have these different little ad blocks throughout the content? Those are called display ads. Display ads are a great way to serve cheap but effective personalized ads to your ideal customer. However, if your ideal customer is using an iPhone and they’ve opted out of online tracking and data sharing, being able to give your ideal customer this personalized ad is no longer going to be an opportunity.


What about if you’re trying to target ads on a location basis? How does this affect you? As we know, especially with the prominence of local services or if you’re a local home service as well, this means that, when you’re serving ads to somebody, it’s super important that those ads are going to people within your actual geo location.


For instance, Twin Falls, Idaho. Let’s say that we are serving ads in Twin Falls, Idaho for people who are looking for a certain service in the area. If people are opting out of activity tracking and data tracking, we’re not going to be able to know whether or not they’re in Twin Falls, Idaho or if they’re somewhere else regionally that’s irrelevant to our business. Therefore, we’re not going to be able to serve personalized ads to them based on location.


Here is another thing to really consider. A big problem with being able to opt out right away from personalized tracking and data tracking is, what about tracking conversions on our website? Being able to put a piece of code in the browser that says, “Hey, if our ideal client goes to our checkout page or to our thank you page, how do we know that they’re going to those pages and they’ve came to our website from a paid advertisement?” If our ideal customer is using an iPhone and they’ve opted out of tracking, this means that we’ll no longer be able to measure accurately whether or not that person converted into a lead or a purchase.


With all of this going around and a lot of marketing companies and businesses trying to figure out how this iOS 14 privacy update will really affect how we pursued digital advertising, you have to be wondering, “What should I be doing right now to help adapt to these changes that are for sure coming down the pipeline?” I have a couple of answers for you.


First of all, I’ve always been a huge supporter in the idea that you should never put all of your eggs into one basket. If you’re only advertising your business through PPC or you’re only advertising your business through Facebook or through OTT, make sure you diversify. There are a lot of advertising options out there, PPC, Facebook, OTT, which is YouTube, display advertising. Be sure to work with a partner who can provide you a mix of ways of getting in front of your ideal customer so that you aren’t only relying on one platform.


But here’s another thing that’s super important to think about. Voice search is becoming super prominent in today’s world, especially among millennials. It is predicted that by the end of 2021 more than 55% of households will have a smart device within their home, which typically has Alexa or Siri or the Google Assistant. With that being said, it’s super important to optimize your website and to optimize your brand to be better positioned within voice search itself. Did you know that more than half of voice searches when conducted through an assistant device return results based on content that answers questions, and that’s a really great way of positioning yourself to become more prominent and more dominant in voice search.


Begin creating content on your website, but also on your Google My Business post that answer questions that your customers are actually searching and looking for. For instance, if you work with a marketing agency, they can do the keyword research and do the topical research to really understand all the different types of questions that your ideal customers are actually searching online within your region.


Definitely keep building reviews. We know that most businesses who want to be aggressive in search really rank really well for competitive keywords are always building reviews for their brand. Don’t give up on reviews. There are a lot of tools out there that will help you generate incredible, authentic, real reviews for your business that will help you maintain your reputation but also help you strengthen your ability to rank for those prize keywords within your marketplace.


The last suggestion that I really have for you is, don’t give up on SEO. As I mentioned before in this video, don’t put all of your eggs in one basket, but that also includes adding to your mix actual SEO services to your marketing campaign. This will help you really stand out organically, it will help your brand build a lot of traffic into your website that converts into leads, and honestly, it’s very future-proof. Google isn’t going to get rid of SEL and people are always going to the organic search results more so than they ever click on ads.


If you have any questions about that, I would love to visit with you. Please reach out to us here at and we would love to do an audit of your website, an audit of your PPC campaigns, and share with you some things that we could do together as a marketing partner to help you boom your business through digital through the year of 2021 and beyond. Thanks for watching.



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