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I'm managing 10 WordPress sites getting between 5-15k views a month.

The company owner sees 'cookie' acceptance warnings on lots of sites he goes to and wants me to implement it across our sites (he has no idea what they do, just hears the headlines about 'tracking' people). I don't know enough about cookies to tell him that they wouldn't be helpful to us, but I feel like they wouldn't. Would having cookies on the 10 different sites we control be of much benefit to us? Would they give the same sort of data that Google Analytics give us? Or are they very different products?

I have GA set up across the sites and we get good data from it, but my boss keeps asking me to set up cookies and I want to have a better understanding of the pros vs cons of introducing them, and what sort of data they might give us compared to what we already get.

  • What would he use the cookies for? It sounds like he doesn't know what they are. It's not something you just turn on and they do something on their own. – Rob Sep 6 '16 at 21:28
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I have GA set up across the sites

In which case you are already serving cookies to your users. And if you are serving this content to EU users then you are "supposed to" display a notification of some kind to at least get implied consent.

Would they give the same sort of data that Google Analytics give us? Or are they very different products?

Hhmmm, you need to do some research on cookies! Cookies, by themselves, don't do anything. They are simply a way of maintaining state between the client (the user) and the server (your website). By setting a cookie you can determine if/when that user last visited your website - that is all. (As well as any information that you link to that cookie in your server-side database.)

  • Our main site www.example.com has a login system which sets a cookie with a user id. Could I then have a different wordpress site www.different.com check for the cookie set by example.com and send back the user id to a db? Would different.com have access to that information that example.com had set? – user1180888 Sep 7 '16 at 9:06
  • No, different.com cannot access cookies that have been set by example.com. Browser security prevents you from accessing cookies that have been set on other domains. – MrWhite Sep 7 '16 at 9:42

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