Retail media ‘leaving money on the table’ with limited strategy

Retailers and brands want retail media networks to have a better quality advertiser experience, range of inventory, data collaboration, measurement and targeting capabilities, a Publicis Groupe survey has revealed.

The study, by Publicis Groupe data company Epsilon, revealed current attitudes from brands and retailers towards retail media’s inefficiencies and strengths, along with their respective priorities and concerns about the growing medium.

Five Retail Media ‘Truths’
One finding was that retailers were “leaving money on the table” if they only offered limited channel strategies, for instance only providing on-site or off-site ads.

The study highlighted that using an omnichannel approach, rather than waiting for customers to come online, offered more opportunities to increase revenue and track the full shopper journey.

In a subset of 471 retailers, nearly half of the retailers polled (45%) currently had on-site ads as part of their strategy, and more than a third (37%) offered off-site programmatic advertising.

Another finding was that at least half of retail media networks did not target or measure effectively. Inconsistent targeting (43%), disparate reporting (41%) and multiple contracts or sets of terms (41%) were the top sources of “retail media inefficiency” across channels and tactics.

Top Sources of retail media inefficiency across channels & tactics

The study suggested retailers adopt a people-based identity solution, rather than modelling, which could cover multiple channels and devices to deliver improved personalisation, relevance and performance.

Retail media networks that offered data collaboration, like “clean rooms”, were found to be more attractive to brands with 70% of respondents saying it was “highly important” to their advertising strategy.

Nearly half (47%) of those surveyed said they were actively developing data collaboration partnerships while more than a third (37%) have existing data collaboration partnerships.

Retail media networks should reduce the number of tech partners they work with to avoid wasted impressions and frustrated shoppers as 64% of those surveyed said retail media networks that worked with too many tech providers had a “negative impact on shoppers”.

On this point, 38% had experienced disjointed creative or messaging across tactics, and 41% considered multiple contracts or sets of terms to be “extremely or very frustrating”. Minimising the number of providers improved consistency, measurement and the ability to sequence messages.

The quality of the advertiser experience, amount of inventory available and online and in-store attributable sales reporting were the top priorities for both retailers and brands registering above 68% for each category for both groups.

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Top retail media priorities and concerns for brands
When measuring retail media campaigns, total sales (47%), return on adspend (47%) and total reach (41%) were the most important metrics for brands in a subset of the survey group of 218 executives.

This was followed by brand lift (37%), purchase intent impact (37%), incremental reach (28%) and category share (22%).

When deciding between retailers on where to spend their ad budgets, quality of a retailer’s media network offering and its performance were ranked top by brands. By rank weighting this was followed by required spend commitments, existing retailer relationships, brand sales volume at retailer and sale of a retailer’s available audience.


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