Retail Media Needs Standardization and Transparency Right Now

Retail media is projected to grow 20% year-over-year in 2023, second only to connected TV among key ad segments. New retail media networks are launching all the time as advertisers shift toward more privacy-forward media solutions built on robust first-party data sets to counteract the demise of third-party cookies.

For the number of retail media networks that exist, there is nearly an equal number of approaches to activating media channels via various platforms, measuring performance, monitoring viewability, measuring ad fraud, and ensuring brand safety.

While traditional digital media has matured, retail media is still in its infancy. This means each retail media network operates slightly differently, causing complexity across the industry. With ever-growing pressure on marketing resources, the retail media network sector cannot put the onus on clients to hire more staff to manage this complexity. Instead, marketers must work together to standardize across key areas.

Let’s look at measurement and methodology transparency as one area where standardization would benefit the industry. Generally, retailers provide some type of closed-loop sales metric attributed to digital media, but these methodologies are as unique as the brands themselves.