As the world rapidly transitions to a digital-first landscape, consumer behaviours evolve. One of the most significant changes we’ve observed is the rise of online shopping. DV’s Four Fundamental Shifts in Advertising and Media report found that nearly 50 percent of Australians shop more online now than pre-pandemic. This trend presents a golden opportunity for marketers to tap into this burgeoning market and drive sales.

Digital media plays a crucial role in the purchase journey. The report in fact revealed that 57 percent of Australians become aware of more brands if they spend more time online, and 62 percent spend more time researching brands online when making important purchase decisions.

Yet the wealth of information available, and the paradox of choice, can also complicate consumers’ lives. Almost half (44 percent) of respondents reported the volume of choice online makes it more difficult to make purchase decisions.

In today’s environment, this abundance of information comes with a lot of noise as well as dis- and misinformation, making it harder for brands to retain customers. According to our report, 61 percent of respondents would be less likely to purchase/use the brand again if they saw it advertised next to content that they determined to be mis- and disinformation.

The key ingredient to successful digital retail media campaigns is a foundation of quality impressions and suitable inventory. They can be scaled to deliver high-quality, targeted marketing campaigns to stand out and influence purchase decisions to effectively reach and engage their target audiences.

Four critical components to quality

Quality is the bedrock upon which successful marketing campaigns are built. By focusing on the four components of quality — fraud-free advertising, brand-safe and suitable environments, geo-targeting for localised campaigns and ad viewability — marketers can maximise the effectiveness of their media spend and better reach and engage their target audiences.

Let’s break that down. First, to ensure a solid foundation for marketing campaigns, advertisers must prioritise fraud-free advertising. Unprotected advertising costs businesses dearly. According to Statista, last year an estimated $81 billion USD was lost to ad fraud.

These kinds of incidents can have real consequences to brand loyalty and recurring revenue as consumers increasingly hold brands accountable. Two-thirds of consumers say they would actually stop using a brand if it appeared beside false, objectionable or inflammatory content. These concerns highlight the importance of establishing quality media in shopper marketing campaigns.

Next, a brand-safe and suitable environment is essential as nearly 90 percent of consumers believe it’s a brand’s responsibility to ensure they are running on or next to safe content. Ad creative messaging and placement must serve in contexts that align with a brand’s values to maintain credibility and avoid damaging brand equity.

When we look at brand safety and suitability infractions, retail is experiencing higher violation rates across both publisher direct and programmatic buys. In fact, retail campaigns see a 26 percent higher brand suitability violation rate on publisher direct buys compared with all other DV advertisers and a 29 percent higher rate on programmatic buys.

Retail campaigns often require a sliding scale of brand safety and suitability settings. For example, the brand suitability needs of a family-oriented CPG likely differ from those of a technology device company. In fact, a recent study by DV and Publicis notes that technology device companies perceived fictional violence as suitable more than 50 percent of the time, while CPG companies considered this suitable just 37 percent of the time. 

Finally, maximising viewability to ensure conversion is the last critical piece of the puzzle. Ads must have the opportunity to be seen by real consumers to make an impact. Although you can’t focus solely on viewability for your campaign to perform, consider all the four pieces of the quality puzzle to optimise your campaign.

Optimise for quality to protect your media investment

Marketers are losing quality in the race to conversion. Solutions that holistically consider all components of quality lead to improved campaign performance and conversion rates. By optimising toward all quality metrics instead of focusing solely on viewability, marketers can enhance their campaigns’ effectiveness and protect their media investments whilst building trust with consumers and aligning brands with the right quality content.

To ensure their shopper marketing campaigns are protected, advertisers should verify everywhere with post-bid solutions, which help maintain and protect brand equity and stop media waste. By maximising working media spend and partnering with trusted verification platforms like DV, marketers can drive ROI and deliver successful campaigns that effectively engage their target audiences.

Imran Masood is country manager for Australia & New Zealand at DoubleVerify.