Walmart extends retail media to CTV, in-store sales

Walmart DSP and Sam's Club are applying first-party data to enhance creative and measurement for advertisers.

MAP sam's club

(Photo courtesy of Sam's Club)

At its core, retail media is designed to provide advertising within an ecommerce marketplace. But as this nascent area develops, it is quickly expanding beyond the retailer’s website.

This week, two entities under the Walmart Inc. umbrella announced new capabilities that illustrate where retail media can play a role in CTV and in-store sales.

Let’s take a look:

Sam’s Club: In-store attribution

Advertising that appears on a website doesn’t only have the potential to drive online sales. It can also help to propel sales at stores.

A new capability announced this week by Sam’s Club is offering a way to measure across both channels.

The membership club announced that in-store sales can now be attributed to search ads that appear on its ecommerce site.

Sam’s Club said its Member Access Platform will use first-party data on member transactions to determine the revenue that is generated by particular search and sponsored product ads, including for purchases made in a store.

In media measurement, attribution is sought by advertisers as they seek to determine the effectiveness of a given ad or campaign, and where to direct spend in hopes of reaching more consumers. But if an ad in one place leads to a sale in another, it adds complexity to the task of assigning credit for a sale. That’s especially true of offline sales, since there is often less information on the behavior that leads up to the store-based purchase available.

“There’s a huge group of our members who see a search ad online or on their phone when shopping but purchase the product in-club. Previously, it was not possible for our advertisers to connect the in-club purchase to their online ads to know what drove sales,” said Tim Simmons, senior vice president and chief product officer, Sam’s Club, in a statement. “With our new attribution model, advertisers can understand what’s motivating purchases across all channels accurately, especially for search ads.”

With this addition, Sam’s Club said it can now offer “true closed-loop measurement” that crosses online and offline sales. The retailer said overall ROAS has increased by nearly 30% for advertisers that have added in-store sales attribution.

The new offering illustrates how digital commerce is driving both online and offline sales. Media must continue to evolve along with shopper behavior.

Walmart DSP: CTV partnership with Innovid

Alongside retail media, another fast-growing area of digital advertising is media that appears on streaming services, which is known as CTV (Connected TV). A new partnership shows there are opportunities for the first-party data that powers retail media to serve as a bridge between the store where they shop and the couch where they watch TV.

Walmart’s media arm will work with Innovid to make more personalized creative for CTV available for advertisers through the retailer’s demand side platform.

Innovid will provide “creative personalization, optimization and interactive experiences,” as well as offer ad delivery services.

The integration of Innovid’s Dynamic Creative Optimization technology is designed to improve “relevance and effectiveness” of CTV ad creative that is available on Walmart DSP, which is powered by The Trade Desk..

"Through Walmart DSP, marketers can more effectively reach Walmart's millions of customers across inventory, optimize their media spend, and connect with consumers on highly sought-after platforms like CTV and beyond," said Krista Panoff, SVP of global enterprise development at Innovid.

The partnership will allow advertisers to tap first-party data from Walmart, and apply it to campaigns that reach customers on channels and platforms beyond the retailer’s properties. Walmart DSP provides measurement that crosses both online and offline channels, the retailer added.

This is the second announcement in as many weeks that shows how first-party data from retail media can be applied to enhance CTV. Best Buy and Roku recently announced a partnership that will put the electronic retailer’s first-party data to work for targeting and measurement on Roku streaming devices.

As advertisers seek new ways to efficiently and effectively reach customers on a web that is moving beyond third-party tools and cookies, the partnerships underscore how retailers are in a prime position to provide the purchase-level data that can help to provide results.

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