WTF are tracking pixels?

Tracking pixels have been a digital marketing fixture for years. And yet they’ve largely stood in the shadow of the third-party cookie, despite their similar tracking capabilities.

Tracking pixels are effectively tiny, invisible images that can be embedded in web pages and emails and used to collect information, such as a device’s IP address, as covered in the video below. Earlier this year, ad security monitoring company Confiant discovered an ad tech company using tracking pixels as part of a fingerprinting ploy that co-opted IAB Europe’s Transparency and Consent Framework.

Imperceptible as tracking pixels may be, they have garnered the attention of companies like Apple and Mozilla. The former’s Mail Privacy Protection feature blocks tracking pixels from loading in emails, which has posed a threat to email marketers. Meanwhile, both Apple and Mozilla provide options in their web browsers to similarly block tracking pixels on web pages.

More in Marketing

As the line between B2B and B2C marketing blurs, Workday taps humor in consumer-facing media channels

As the crowded digital landscape challenges marketers to stand out, B2B company Workday tests a B2C marketing strategy.

How the NBA’s broadcast rights tussle could affect advertisers

Streaming could change the NBA advertising landscape, say media experts.

Ad tech vendor Colossus faces scrutiny for alleged mismanaging IDs

Concerns stem from a report by ad transparency startup Adalytics, which discovered that Colossus was mislabeling IDs, leading to unintended ad purchases.