Retailers recognize cross-device need, but struggle: Criteo

Customers browse on multiple devices before making the final purchase.

Retailers recognize cross-device need, but struggle: Criteo

SINGAPORE - Nearly four in 10 ecommerce transactions in Asia were conducted on multiple devices before the purchase, according to new research from Criteo.

In its Performance Marketing in Asia-Pacific report, mobile websites accounted for 27 percent of traffic share in Asia Pacific, compared to mobile apps (10 percent) and desktop websites (63 percent). Percentage of total sales accounted by mobile website, mobile app and desktop website was 23 percent, 10 percent and 67 percent, respectively.

Retailers took heed of the trend, with more than four in 10 companies prepared to spend 41 to 60 percent of their budgets for cross-channel advertising campaigns over the next year and a half.

Mobile and cross-device advertising is going to see the largest growth over the next 12 to 18 months (75 percent), followed by search marketing (69 percent) and paid social advertising on social media platforms (60 percent), the report said.

In addition, display accounted for the biggest share of advertising budget (28 percent) and revenue (29 percent)—the only area where revenue exceeded investment.

While the need is well understood, the report also details the struggles marketers are stilll having as they try to deliver personalised, cross-proflle marketing.

Here are the top choices respondents cited as the biggest challenges to their online advertising and marketing:

  • Lack of properly segmented market/consumer-level data (55 percent)
  • Achieving and/or justifying ROI (53 percent)
  • Finding the right solution providers (50 percent)
  • Lack of management/department support (44 percent)

And here are the biggest headaches they have experienced in "onboarding and running cross-profile, personalised advertising":

  • Identifying the best technology partner and accuracy of the solution? (65 percent)
  • Difficulty dealing with the latest privacy standards and best practices (59 percent)
  • Difficulty maintaining customer data quality across systems (53 percent)
  • Lack of internal knowledge/ skills to run the program (55 percent)
  • Lack of coordination between stakeholders (e.g., marketing, analytics/customer intelligence, eCommerce, etc.) (50 percent)

Criteo said improved technology can now help retailers get the exact match in order to engage multi-screen users in the most consistent and connected way. "For many consumers in Asia, mobile internet is their first real experience of online commerce, and the market is growing every day: 6 million people get online for the first time on mobile every month in India," Yuko Saito, managing director of Criteo Southeast Asia, said in the report.

Big data

Besides cross-device advertising, retailers were also keen on data-based personalised advertising. Delivering personalised ads based on customer data, improving customer life-time value and loyalty are among the top three online marketing goals for retailers who are now banking on long-term customer loyalty (more frequent and longer visits from existing users) instead of clickthroughs and conversion rates.

"The key to success is making ads relevant and personalised, and getting this right can deliver online conversions very effectively," said Saito. "Practically, this may mean showing customers ads based on products they have already been looking at, but it can also mean showing recommended products. What we have seen is that up to 70 percent of customers who are served ads in this way go on to view products they had not looked at previously. That's the real power of personalisation."

Criteo suggested that retailers should seek an ad-tech partner that allows them to use deterministically matched and actionable real-time customer-level data in order to get a holistic view of customers' browsing patterns and intent. 

On the other hand, mobile web display and in-app advertising are currently a high priority for more than 70 percent of marketers. With mobile being the first screen for the majority of consumers, Criteo said retailers should focus on designing apps that enable the users to buy convert better and have a higher average order value than desktop purchases. 

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