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From clicks to bricks: measuring the impact of marketing strategies on in-store sales

In today’s competitive retail landscape, the need for brands to be efficient is more important than ever. This includes managing and navigating the intersection of online and in-store sales to ensure marketing strategies align with consumer shopping preferences. However, according to Capital One, despite the digital transformation and e-commerce boom, brick-and-mortar shopping remains the preferred method for most American consumers. This poses two important questions – can marketing and advertising strategies effectively drive in-store sales? And can it be measured?  

Are Traasdahl

The answer is yes. Innovative brands are leveraging modern, collaborative data platforms to combine and leverage data on inventory, sales, and advertising spend to measure the impact of marketing campaigns on in-store sales. By analyzing marketing efforts and in-store purchases, brands can directly measure the impact their campaigns have on in-store sales, enabling them to put their advertising dollars in the highest impact channels.  

Here’s how brands can apply an innovative data analytics approach to measure the impact digital marketing strategies have on driving in-store retail sales.   

Eliminate data silos between sales and marketing 

In an era where retail margins are razor thin, CPG brands require access to accurate, real-time sales and inventory data – not as a luxury but as a crucial tool for success.  

Today’s consumer is omnichannel. Customers engage with brands across multiple digital landscapes, including social media, display ads, online videos, and more. With information on which channels – and campaigns – perform best, brands can create a strategy that delivers maximum ROI. Historically, this data is trapped in siloes and often late to the game. However, innovative brands have learned to leverage the latest sales and inventory data, alongside media spend data, to empower marketers with the insights needed to measure actual campaign effectiveness by linking ad exposure to in-store visits and purchases.   

Additionally, with access to store-level sales and inventory insights brands can pinpoint which campaigns, products, audiences, and channels drive the highest in-store success, allowing for strategic adjustments as needed. With the combination of retail sales and marketing spend data, brands make more sound marketing decisions when building out strategies to increase in-store sales.   

In one example, the popular soda brand poppi, observed that users who viewed poppi’s Amazon online video were 15 percent more likely to buy its products in a store than people who didn’t see those ads. At the same time, customers exposed to TikTok ads were 80 percent more likely to buy poppi soda at a store. 

These findings highlight the importance of using in-store data to fine-tune marketing strategies and the potential for brands to adjust marketing spend based on tangible sales data. By connecting ad exposure to actual purchase data, poppi’s agency Tinuiti was able to measure its campaign’s true effectiveness beyond superficial metrics such as clicks and impressions to derive actionable, real-time results.   

Align inventory with marketing strategy 

The proof is in the inventory data. CPG brands know, in theory, that if shelves are empty, they shouldn’t market to it. Too often, brands are unaware of inventory levels and they deploy broad marketing campaigns regardless of actual inventory levels at retail locations. However, with the correct data, marketers can optimize marketing spend to push products where inventory levels are high and reduce spend in less promising markets. This not only reduces marketing waste but increases consumer loyalty by ensuring that promoted products are in stock.   

Toy brand ZURU Group has prioritized the application of data in every decision. It’s a shift that has empowered the organization to launch trending toys and fast-moving goods rapidly in as little as three months. Post-product launch, access to real-time heat maps of product availability via Crisp additionally empowers ZURU’s marketing teams to execute geo-targeted campaigns and reduce ad spend. With a data-driven approach, Zuru Group has reduced 50 percent of potential markdowns, boosting bottom-line success and increasing advertising efficiency using store-level sales and inventory data.  

Embrace data-driven decisions 

As both poppi and ZURU Group experienced, leveraging real-time sales and inventory data alongside marketing spend enables stronger business decisions and more effective marketing strategies. By measuring true performance across channels, brands can fine-tune strategies to unlock critical revenue growth opportunities. With the proper data foundation and platforms, brands can confidently move through today’s digital-first landscape by linking together their retail data and, media spend data and marketing strategies to identify which channels are most effective at driving in-store sales. Additionally, as omnichannel retail expands, brands that embrace real-time data-driven strategies will gain a competitive edge.  

By Are Traasdahl  

Are Traasdahl is CEO at Crisp, the market leader in Collaborative Commerce. Crisp leverages the power of the cloud to connect and normalize 40+ retail data sources to provide real-time insights and trends. Hundreds of brands, retailers, and distributors use Crisp to manage supply more efficiently, reduce waste and skyrocket profitability.