Contextual Vs. Behavioral Advertising: What to Choose in 2022?

You must have heard the news of the demise of third-party cookies in the coming future. While some marketers cannot handle the grief, intellectual marketers discover new and innovative ways to connect with their customers. These marketers are investing resources in experimenting with various new-cookieless strategies and the best one is contextual advertising.

What is Behavioral Targeting?

Third-party cookies have been the significant support behind the functioning of behavioral targeting for the past 20 years. It enables marketers to show customers ads based on their browsing behavior. Cookies help them track users? behavior, such as what they are surfing, wishlist or adding to their cart, links they are clicking on, etc. 

Perhaps, they can target the customers and display relevant product-related ads on any website users visit.

Behavioral targeting is an effective way of advertising. Still, it is likely to see a huge downfall when third-party cookies will be phased out by Google chrome because marketers will no longer get access to users? personal information. 

What is Contextual Targeting?

Contextual advertising is on the plan of many B2B marketers and advertisers. A simple explanation of contextual advertising is ?displaying ads on relevant content.? In contrast to behavioral targeting, contextual ads don?t rely on user information to display their ads. It is displayed on the right content at the right time. 

For example, a home appliance?s ad is shown on a recipe website. So, any user who?ll visit that website will come across that ad. 

In this form of marketing, the website or video content is analyzed and matched against the relevant ad using keywords, location, filters, etc. The relevancy of content increases the chance of it getting clicked by the consumer. Contextual advertising might seem a bit complex but it is really interesting and helpful for all the advertisers.

What to Choose Between Contextual and Behavioral Targeting?

Previously, marketers didn?t need to choose between these forms of marketing, as a smart marketer would use a combination of both strategies. 

For instance, an advertiser would display contextual ads on the websites its potential customers are visiting and then show behavioral ads on different websites.

As the world of advertising is shifting toward a more consumer-friendly approach to targeting, it will be best to opt-out of behavioral targeting and focus on contextual targeting. It is a top choice for marketers looking for a consumer-friendly advertising strategy.

How to Use both Contextual Advertising with Behavioral Advertising

The cookie isn?t entirely phased out yet. It means that, for now, many advertisers are continuing with their well-established behavioral strategies. We understand?it?s convenient to stick to what you know! But since we?re in an evolutionary moment, now?s the time to consider how to introduce context into your existing strategy. 

It doesn?t mean abandoning your behavioral campaigns right away. Instead, strike a balance between these methodologies to introduce contextual tactics slowly. Blending both methods will make for a well-rounded strategy and help you gain more confidence in making contextual campaigns. Rather than waiting until Google makes the use of cookies unavailable, get ahead of the curve by embracing contextual advertising now. 

Introducing Contextual Advertising to Your Digital Strategy

Contextual advertising departs from the traditional behavioral approach of making sure ads are relevant to users. Instead, contextual targeting aims to ensure the ad is relevant to the content of that page. And as the ad industry continues to move toward a cookie-less world, the role of contextual will continue to grow. With this comes plenty of new opportunities! 


The countdown has begun! While there?s still some time left in the phasing-out of third-party cookies, you still need to start brainstorming about your future strategies. Evaluate all the pros and cons of both contextual and behavioral forms of advertising and pick the right one which suits your needs.

Be prepared to adapt to the changes if you?re relying on the behavioral targeting method till now, as contextual advertising is likely to take over the market soon.