The New Age Of Retail Media

Apr 15, 2021 | Omnichannel Marketing, Retail

With customers increasingly turning to e-commerce, alongside the impending death of third-party cookies, brands are now discovering a new age model of advertising. And now more than ever, we need to diversify advertising platforms, as the once king on the top of the hill advertising method starts to become unstable for revenue and predictable results.

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Headshot of Perry, Creative Director at Ten Four
Written by Tom
Our Chief Digital Strategist, living for the latest news in the e-commerce and digital marketing world (and the weather report, so he can get out on his jet ski)

5 Mins Read

Introducing the retail media network. 

As we know all too well, the marketing and advertising industry is a fast-paced and ever-evolving environment. With the plethora of technology advancements, alongside the world-changing events of COVID-19 accelerating consumer adoption of digital retailing channels, people are increasingly turning away from brick and mortar stores and turning to online retailers to do their shopping. 

  • It’s estimated that 95% of purchases will be made online by 2040 [2] 
  • In 2017, e-commerce was responsible for $2.3 trillion in sales, which is expected to nearly double to $4.5 trillion by 2021. [3] 

It’s been said that retailers who leverage retail media networks have become the ‘new media moguls’, thanks to the rise of e-commerce. 

According to a recent study from Mckinsey & Company, it is estimated that a whopping 10 years of e-commerce growth happened in just 3 months at the height of the pandemic [1]. Bringing these crazy growth stats closer to home, it is expected that by 2023 Australian e-commerce revenue will have a 5-year growth rate of 44.6%. 

Despite the commonly held belief many of us may hold, it is not just the more digitally native Gen-Xers and Millennials who are now pivoting and adjusting their preferences to online retailing. Data published by eMarketer shows that 62.1% of US Baby Boomers will also turn to purchasing online this year [4]. 

This huge shift in consumers buying habits means that for businesses, adapting fast is essential to not just their success, but for their survival. 

And so, the retail media network was born.

What Is A Retail Media Network?  

More and more retailers are now selling profitable ad space on their sites to other brands. And this my friends is the core idea behind a retail media network. Large retailers set up an advertising platform on their website, app, or other digital platforms within their network, where businesses can buy ad spaces. Essentially making advertising a vertical strategy. 

This new vertical advertising strategy enables advertisers to reach customers at the various stages of their buyer journey. 

As the world’s third-largest digital media seller, Amazon is now giving Google and Facebook a run for their money and for their ad marketplace dominance. How? Because of the astonishing amount of consumer purchase data it possesses. Thus, retailers with their own treasure trove of first-party and purchase data are suddenly finding themselves able to battle in the digital ad economy. 

Mass merchandisers such as the likes of Amazon (Amazon Advertising), Walgreens (Walgreens Advertising Group), and Target (Target Roundel) are no longer the sole key players in the retail media network game. There has been a noticeable surge recently in other companies jumping on the retail media bandwagon and establishing their own networks. 

The Big Draw Cards For RMN’s  

One of the key reasons why retail media networks have typically performed so well is because of one basic psychological marketing insight: shoppers are more likely to be receptive to ads when they’re already in the buying funnel, rather than when they’re carrying out other activities that are unrelated to shopping.  

This new advertising model has opened up a whole new world of possibilities in how retailers and brands can diversify their marketing mix and generate revenue. Even though retail media networks are still very much in their infancy, they’ve already proved themselves to be a very powerful form of advertising that has the ability to completely alter the future of online shopping experiences.  

Another advantage for brands is that these ads lead to increased visibility and diversified product discovery, which ultimately helps to drive sales. These large networks can help brands tap into the niche and much more personalised audiences that they wouldn’t have otherwise been able to reach on their own. 

  • More personalised ads, leading to more accurate advertising for brands
  • Maximise marketing budgets by generating better results and greater ROAS
  • No more blanket marketing
  • Increased ROI through automation, control, and efficiency of media investments 

Step Up Your Marketing Mix With RMN’s  

Not only have retail media networks proven effective, but they’re also quickly proving to be a big player in the same league as Facebook and Google. As a performance marketing agency, our two cents is that they’re here to stay. 

With the removal of third-party cookies, as well as the privacy policy changes from both Facebook and Google (read more about that in our article here) the attractiveness of highly targeted ads is now more than ever awfully appealing. 

Businesses now need to adapt to the changing advertising landscape and consumer behaviours either by creating their own retail media network if they have the first-party data to do so or alternatively advertising on other companies networks.  

As Ten Four is a platform-agnostic media team, we do offer this new form of advertising for our clients. With our end to end marketing approach, we marry a combination of performance marketing from Facebook and Google with this new approach of sending traffic to online retailers in order to drive conversions. 

Get in touch with one of our digital strategists today to see how we can step up your marketing mix and increase your ROI by utilising the power of retail media networks.   

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