It may have been kickstarted by ecommerce operators capitalizing on digital shelf space – but the “retail media” boom isn’t staying confined to the consumer screen.

Next-up, retailers are making use of in-store ad opportunities – and that means many of them will want to link up the physical and digital journey.

In this video interview with Joanna O’Connell for Beet.TV, Brian Gleason, Global Chief Revenue Officer, Criteo, talks about retail media’s “omni-channel” odyssey.

The rapid expansion of retail media

“Retail media came about in a significant way, first with Amazon, and then most recently to see large players coming in, whether it’s Target with Roundel, Walgreens, CVS, Macy’s,” says Gleason. He believes this expansion has opened up opportunities for media placements at the point of transaction.

With retail media now accounting for 20% of digital advertising, Gleason shares, “it’s grown to $40 billion in five years, expanding twice as fast as social media and three times as fast as search.”

Those were the figures Forrester put on the space in 2022, when it predicted the amount would rise to $85 billion by 2026, buoyed by a “retailer pile-on” and diversification of ad formats.

What’s Next For The Booming Retail Media Market

Bridging the physical and digital worlds

Gleason explains why in-store shopping will fuel “omni-channel” retail media.

He emphasizes that with 80-85% of transactions happening in-store, the goal is to create a seamless experience across digital and physical touchpoints.

“It’s linking physical,” Gleason says. “Think about when you’re walking into a store and you see an end cap or a digital screen, or you get a coupon in the mail.”

Incrementality and profitability across channels

As marketers begin to understand the value of each touchpoint, Gleason says they will” want the same experience that I have in a digital world that I do in a physical one”.

“As marketers, I want to think about how I’m engaging at each one of those touchpoints,” he says.

He highlights the importance of measuring the return on ad spend (ROAS) for in-store promotions versus sponsored ads and the incrementality they drive.

Making retail media buying seamless

Addressing the challenges in the fast-moving and fragmented retail media space requires building an ecosystem that connects brands, agencies, retailers, and publishers.

Gleason outlines the approach: “For the brands and agencies, giving them one platform to be able to come into and buy across our 175 retailers is step one.

“For the retailer, it’s figuring out, ‘How do I actually build a standardized way to measure them?'”

You are watching ‘Inside Commerce: Retail Media & What’s Next? Reports from ShopTalk 2023,’ a Beet.TV Leadership Series presented by Criteo. For more videos from this series, please visit this page.