How In-Store Visits Impact Online, Offline Purchase Cycle -- Even Now

Location ad company GroundTruth just released research on ecommerce conversion rates and for the first time agreed to share data on how in-store visits impact the overall online and offline purchase cycle, sharing recent data on what it expects for advertising in the third quarter as advertisers prepare for the holidays.

“We really didn’t know how to understand the value of an in-store visit based on total commerce,” said Dan Silver, vice president of marketing, GroundTruth, adding that the company wanted to know "when someone sees a location-based ad for a product, how does that result in total basket size?”

The study, commissioned by Numerator, found that serving location-based mobile ads to consumers results in higher conversion rates for both in-store and online purchases. Numerator analyzed the impact of 7,764 store visits driven by GroundTruth location-based mobile ads. The study was performed on various campaigns from 2019 with three major retailers across the Beauty, Home Improvement & Mass Merchandising categories and was based on pre-COVID-19 data.

While the pandemic shook the advertising industry earlier this year, with many advertisers pausing campaigns, requests for proposals on holiday ads are looking up.

GroundTruth is seeing 10% higher requests for proposals for campaigns running in the same quarter YoY, which says marketers are spending, but they are trying to be more opportunistic as they deal with quick changes regarding the virus

“When you look at total holiday spend, we’re thinking it won’t be much of a dip,” he said. “Shipping delays will be taken into higher consideration, especially now. People typically wait until the weekend before the holidays, but knowing there could be shipping delays people will start buying earlier.”

“The assumption is, when people go to a store now it’s more purposeful,” he said. “The in-store numbers for a specific retailer are probably higher, because people don’t want to go to too many stores, so they take what’s there.”

How does offline behavior influence online behavior? The study reveals that 66% of shoppers make a purchase from a retailer in-store or online when delivered with a location-based ad.

Shoppers who make an in-store visit after being shown a location-based mobile ad are 25% more likely to make a purchase from that retailer online than those who are not shown an ad. Shoppers who make an in-store visit after being shown a location-based mobile ad spend an annual average of 27% more than those who are not shown an ad.


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