Revealing The Top Five Truths of Retail Media

Retail media is helping to re-shape the retail industry and the advertising space.

Retail Media

Worth a staggering $50 billion, up from $13 billion four years ago, according to Insider Intelligence, the sector goes from strength to strength with a growing number of retailers getting involved – developing their own networks and working with technology partners to deliver a retail media offering.

For retailers and brands, it’s a win-win. Retailers are able to monetise their ecommerce sites through digital advertising and create a better shopper experience. While brands can access retailers’ first-party data and reach consumers more effectively – all the more important in the context of third party cookie deprecation and an increasingly fragmented advertising landscape.

Earlier this year, global advertising and marketing technology company, Epsilon, and retail media platform, CitrusAd, published findings from a global report on The State of Retail Media in 2023. The comprehensive study of retailers and brands looking at the current and future state of retail media was conducted in partnership with Phronesis Partners across 12 countries in early 2023.

In it, we highlighted five key takeaways:

  1. Are Retailers Leaving Money on the Table by Limiting Channels?

Retail media is more than just on-site (on retailers’ own sites) or off-site; it is about giving brands access to all of the channels that retailers use to connect with shoppers. Waiting for customers to visit a retail website is not the most effective strategy so retail media networks that take an omnichannel approach to reach customers wherever they are, means retailers can develop a true advertising business. A unified retail media network has the power to follow the full shopper journey. That means off-site interactions are tied to on-site activity, and vice versa.

  1. Half of Media Networks Don’t Target or Measure Efficiently

Performance improves when marketing is based on a comprehensive understanding of every shopper across every channel. Without being able to see consumers at an individual level, there’s more chance of a poor shopper experience due to over-messaging. Retail media networks must be grounded in a strong, people-based identity solution (not modelling) that goes across multiple channels and devices so they can deliver the levels of personalisation, relevance and performance that brands want.

Brands want to drive sales and performance in their retail media campaigns, not just more impressions. But they also want to create customer loyalty with retail media enabling them to measure data correctly and build smarter loyalty programs.

  1. Retail Media Offers Brands Opportunities to Access First-Party Data

Retail media can be an engine for growth, and retailers’ first-party data is key to this. Data collaboration technologies such as clean rooms empower retailers to manage, organise and enrich their first-party data to make it more valuable to brands they partner with.

Brands and retailers want to be able to collaborate, activate and measure more holistically. Retailers also want to be able to extend their targeted reach off-site and in store.

  1. Retail Media With Multiple Providers Creates Inefficiencies And Poor Experiences

Working with too many providers creates problems for retailers, brands and shoppers. According to the study, nearly two-thirds (64%) of respondents said that media networks with multiple technology providers have a negative impact on shoppers. It can be hard to know which shoppers are interested and which have already been messaged (or want to hear from a brand in the first place) when working with multiple partners. It can lead to wasted impressions and very frustrated shoppers.

So, minimise the number of providers to help improve consistency, measurement and the ability to sequence messages

  1. Advertiser Experience And Inventory Are Key Say Brands and Retailers

Brands want an easy-to-use media network with plenty of inventory – and retailers want to provide it. Among the top priorities for retailers are the quality of advertiser experience and the amount of inventory available (both 78%), while these are also among the top priorities for brands – 70% point to the advertiser experience and 68% to the amount of inventory available.

The retail media market is constantly evolving, and best practices are still being defined. But for now, brands and retailers agree they both need a solution that does a lot of things right.

Alban Villani, Regional CEO for EMEA at CitrusAd