Asda and Starbucks prove mobile advertising can drive footfall as well as click-through rates

Asda and Starbucks prove mobile advertising can drive footfall as well as click-through rates
Liz Morrell is a freelance business journalist and content creator with more than 20 years writing experience, including 15 in retail and associated sectors. She is a regular contributor to MarketingTech but also covers a number of other industries in her freelance capacity. Contact her via LinkedIn or at

Picture credit: iStockphoto

Online and mobile advertising have traditionally focused on click-through rates and online traffic but, as retailers become more aware of the need to provide an omnichannel rather than single channel experience, that is changing. 

Mobile advertisers are realising that the fact that their customers are shopping both online and instore – and more importantly using their mobiles within the physical store environment – means that they can target advertising to drive the physical as well as the virtual shopping experience.

The trend is highlighted by a new partnership between global location marketplace xAd and UK retailers including Starbucks and Asda. They are creating targeted mobile advertising campaigns that have not only been shown to increase brand awareness but also to boost store visits – up by an average of 60% according to xAd.

UK trials

xAd ran trials with the UK brands to show how mobile ad campaigns can impact and drive store visitation lift (SVL) as well as affect brand awareness. Previously the focus has simply been on click through rates (CTR) for online retailing rather than any understanding of how the instore experience benefited from mobile advertising.

“The trial has shown us the true potential for location-based campaigns,” said Chris Chalmers, head of digital marketing at Asda.

“Early results show a real lift in store visits and we can see the impact of specific promotions which is critical in the run-up to Christmas.”

At Starbucks the company says the platform has been a natural fit in its aim to be a mobile innovator. “We aim to deliver relevant content at the right time and through xAd’s proximity targeting, mobile gives us the unique ability to do that while providing insight on the content that resonates most,” says Ian Cranna, vice president marketing and category EMEA at Starbucks.

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