Corporate Eye

Online Display Advertising Increases In-Store CPG Brand Sales

New research from comScore and dunnhumbyUSA shows that online display advertising does have a positive effect on in-store sales for consumer packaged goods brands.

According to the research, consumer products brands get a median 21% sales lift from households that are exposed to online display advertising, and 5 out of 6 online display ad campaigns boost sales for consumer products brands.

The study also found that 70% of online display ad campaigns generated double-digit sales lifts, and 40% of online display ad campaigns generated sales lifts of 30% or more. Furthermore, the research showed that targeted online display ads (from in-store buying data and online browsing data from the study sponsors) generate an in-store sales lift of 42%, which is twice as high as non-targeted campaign results (21%).

These are some significant results that further support developing an integrated marketing strategy that raises awareness and purchase intent across media channels. It’s the continuing exposure to targeted communications where audiences already spend time that increases brand favorability and sets the stage for purchase decisions and conversions at the store level. Online display advertising is just one more place where marketers can expose audiences to their messages and stake a place in consumers’ minds, so when it’s time for the consumer to make the purchase decision, the brand is top-of-mind.

There has long been a debate in business circles about the direct effects that online display advertising delivers with executives relying on click-through rates and immediate conversion percentages as the measurement stick to judge a campaign’s effectiveness. The results from the comScore and dunnhumbyUSA study provide more proof that online advertising can do far more than drive immediate sales. Just as television commercials are unlikely to motivate a consumer to jump off his couch and head to the local store to purchase a specific consumer product, neither is online display advertising meant only for that purpose.

Show the results from this study to your executives next time you need to justify your online display advertising budget. It might make them realize they’ve been very short-sighted in their vision of online advertising success in the past. In fact, staying with that old way of thinking is going to lead to missed opportunities that competitors are more than happy to take from your brand.

Image: stock.xchng

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.

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