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Shoptalk recap: Top 5 commerce media trends unveiled by industry leaders

By:
Rama Chanani
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May 14, 2024

The 2024 Shoptalk dinner, hosted by Moloco, brought together industry leaders Andrew Lipsman, Keith Bryan, and Nikhil Raj to discuss the ongoing evolution of commerce media. The event offered a glimpse into the future of retail advertising, the significance of first-party data, and Walmart's acquisition of Vizio. 

  • Andrew Lipsman: An Independent Analyst specializing in Media, Ads, and Commerce, and a former principal analyst at eMarketer.
  • Keith Bryan: Founder of Colosseum Strategy and former president of Best Buy Ads, Media, and CRM.
  • Nikhil Raj: Chief Business Officer for Retail Media at Moloco, co-founder of Walmart Retail Media, and former partner at Bain.

Here are the 5 key trends in the commerce media landscape from Shoptalk:

1. First-party data can drive up click-through rates by 3-6x

Andrew and Nikhil dived into the importance of leveraging first-party data and advanced machine learning algorithms to achieve high levels of monetization. By optimizing ad impressions based on user behavior and preferences, retailers can significantly enhance click-through and conversion rates across various ad formats. This highlights the importance of data-driven strategies for maximizing ad revenue and effectively competing with major industry players like Amazon.

Machine learning improvements improves search ad monetization

                                                                      
They further emphasized the outsized revenue share onsite ads will continue to deliver in commerce media.

Retail Media is evolving to drive impact throughout the funnel 

                                                                            

While Retail Media is expanding, on-site search still drives the majority of growth expectations

2. Moving up the funnel through off-site ads

Keith reflected on his tenure at Best Buy, unveiling how the strategic move into offsite ads highlighted the importance of adapting to evolving consumer behaviors and technological advancements. By leveraging Best Buy’s upstream vendor relationships and embracing offsite ad formats, this forward-thinking approach expanded advertising reach beyond traditional onsite channels. Best Buy was able to tap into a wider range of advertising objectives and ultimately enhance their monetization efforts.

Retail Media’s evolution up the funnel and offsite

                                                   

3. Committed investment toward in-store ads

To effectively implement onsite monetization efforts, it’s essential to benchmark against industry standards and optimize ad formats to cater to customers and advertisers. Keith's reference to benchmarking against "good publishers" emphasizes balancing audience needs with advertiser goals to maximize effectiveness.

Retail Media’s growth into physical retail comparable to broadcast TV

                                   

4. Shifts in how retailers are strategically setting up their ad business for success: Insourcing (supply, ad ops, and technology)

In commerce media operations, there are choices between insourcing and outsourcing. Nikhil highlighted how insourcing important elements such as ad operations and sales, allows retailers such as Kroger, to control their profit margins better, enhance operational efficiency, and tailor solutions to meet their business goals. He stressed that balancing internal capabilities with external technology partnerships is critical for achieving profitability and sustainable growth in the competitive commerce media landscape.

Options for retailers when considering how to set up their ads business

                                 

5. The growing value of first-party data: Walmart’s Vizio acquisition

Andrew and Nikhil discussed how Walmart's acquisition of Vizio as a strategic was in part a move to obtain valuable first-party data, sharpening its competitive edge against major industry players like Amazon. This acquisition grants Walmart critical insights into consumer behavior and access to the Connected TV (CTV) market, enabling optimized advertising revenue through data-driven strategies. He linked this to broader industry trends observed at Moloco, where customers are expanding their advertising from retail media to CTV partners.

Walmart’s new flywheel with Vizio acquisition

                                                     

Watch the Shoptalk top trends playlist here:

Rama Chanani

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