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how do ad cookies, sharing data cross domains work?

when you visit a site and you see it has products you viewed elsewhere

9:27 pm on Nov 29, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I am wondering if there is already a thread covering this but I could not find one.

I am wondering if anyone can tell me in a simplistic way how this is done. When I go to a site and do some shopping or browsing, often times when I go to another site I see some of the products I was looking at.

I thought that this was done with a cookie but after some research it appears there may actually be a database involved?

So in a nutshell we have site ABC which has products, in the background it connects to site ZZZ, then when you go to site XYZ it communicates with site ZZZ and see's your info.

If this is correct, then I would like to know a little more of how this is done and what is involved.