What is a cookie?
Cookies may be set by the website which you are visiting («first party cookie») or they may be set by other websites which run content on the page you are viewing («third party cookie»).
What is in a cookie?
A cookie is a simple text file stored on your computer or mobile device by a website’s server. That server will subsequently be able to retrieve or read the contents of that cookie. Cookies are managed by your browser. Each cookie is unique and contains some anonymous information such as a unique identifier, site name, digits and letters. It allows a website to remember your browsing preferences.
Types of cookie
First party cookies
First party cookies are set by the website which you are visiting, and they can only be read by that site.
Third party cookies
Third party cookies are set and used by a different organisation from the owner of the website which you are visiting. For example, to measure its audience a website might use a third-party analytics company, which will set its own cookie to perform that service. The website you are visiting may also have embedded content, e.g. YouTube videos or Flickr slideshows. Those sites may also set their own cookies.
More significantly, a website might use a third-party advertising network to deliver targeted advertising.
Advertising services are not used by Askfred bvba.
Session cookies are stored temporarily during a browsing session and are deleted from the user’s device when the browser is closed.
Persistent cookies are saved on your computer for a fixed period (usually a year or longer) and are not deleted when the browser is closed. They are used where we need to know who you are for more than one browsing session.
Google Analytics Cookies
Google sets the following cookies:
A persistent cookie that tracks visitors. Metrics associated with utma include: first visit (unique visit), last visit (returning visit). This also includes days and visits to purchase calculations which afford ecommerce websites with data intelligence around purchasing sales funnels.
- utmb & utmc
These two cookies work in tandem to calculate visit length: utmb marks the exact arrival time and utmc registers the precise exit time of the user.
Because utmb counts entrance visits, it is a session cookie, and expires at the end of the session, e.g. when the user leaves the page. A timestamp of 30 minutes must pass before utmc expires. Given utmc cannot tell if a browser or website session ends. Therefore, if no new page view is recorded in 30 minutes, the cookie is expired.
utmz monitors the HTTP Referrer and notes where a visitor arrived from, with the referrer siloed into type (Search engine (organic or cpc), direct, social and unaccounted). From the HTTP Referrer the utmz cookie also registers the keyword that generated the visit plus geolocation data.
This cookie lasts six months. In tracking terms umtz is perhaps the most important as it will tell you about your traffic and help with conversion information such as what source, medium and keyword to attribute for a Goal Conversion.
The utmv cookie lasts "forever" and is used for segmentation, data experimentation. utmv works hand in hand with utmz to improve targeting capabilities.