Walmart Connect: Walmart’s Ambitious Advertising Plans For Its Programmatic Platform
Retail giant Walmart plans to build out its Walmart Connect advertising platform this year and is creating multiple new channels for advertisers to engage directly with its customers.
Walmart has improved its internal advertising prowess over the past several years, with retail media becoming increasingly important. On Walmart’s earnings call, the retailer discussed its global advertising business and how Walmart Connect, its United States arm, plans to innovate this year. In the fourth quarter ended Jan. 28, Walmart’s global advertising business reached $2.1 billion and active U.S. advertisers increased by 136%.
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The meaning of meaningful connections
The digital media presence is a tempting opportunity for advertisers. Big retailers have also stepped up their advertising offerings. These efforts imply an additional revenue stream derived from first-party data, as well as confidence that the retailers’ customers have more attention to spare for additional advertising.
Reach: Walmart states that 90% of American households with them in-store or online. Also, claims that more than 150 million customers shops every week. In a company blog post, Walmart Connect SVP and General Manager Rich Lehrfeld describe the connections the company is making between its customers, suppliers, and sellers.
“Our mission at Walmart Connect is to help brands and sellers meaningfully connect with these customers on their shopping journey – wherever that occurs – to find the right product or discover a new one.”
Walmart lists that these meaningful connections occur in omnichannel ways- stores, websites, apps, or the internet. Of course, the retail giant’s own digital properties play an extensive role in the journey that includes search and native display ads as well as social media.
Social Media: The #GetTheWChallenge for the football fans on TikTok to inspire their shopping for the Big Game.
AR Experience: The retail giant tapped customer attention using AR technology where they discovered new products through Walmart’s Gift Finder during the holiday season. They also purchased ingredients through co-created shoppable Pinterest recipes.
Expand Touchpoints: Walmart Connect plans to expand the touchpoints for customers to view ads and the types of advertisements they see through CTV, video, and omnichannel experiences, such as self-checkout screens, in-store events, sampling, and TV Walls. Moreover, Walmart.com will launch premium advertising experiences by the end of the year, including video and onsite advertising.
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Unlocking growth for suppliers and sellers
Suppliers and sellers will be able to reach customers more efficiently with automation. Lehrfeld explained,
“We recently rolled out Display Self-Serve to our first phase of advertisers, giving them more speed, flexibility and control with their display campaigns.”
Walmart Platform Partner program will also be expanded to assist sellers in scaling, automating, and optimizing search campaigns. Furthermore, Walmart Demand Side Platform (DSP) will be presented to more advertisers and will enable them to purchase offsite inventory in one place.
Its blog post explains that improving targeting and search capabilities will give advertisers more impact and customers a better experience. It will also be able to offer a more comprehensive end-to-end offering by expanding its measurement capabilities across its portfolio. Lehrfeld concluded
“We’re laser-focused on evolving Walmart Connect’s solutions to help advertisers make every media moment a retail moment, by connecting with customers in a meaningful way at any point in their shopping journey.”.
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