Retail Ad Spend: A Mirror Of Consumer Activity?


Standard Media Index has just released retail advertising spend data for the start of the 2018 holiday season.

Early indications are advertisers are following consumers with respect to where to put their dollars, putting a dent on activity at radio and TV from brick-and-mortar stores who may believe local digital provides greater ROI, for the price.

Retail spending on advertising in October and November is down.

But, that’s on an overall basis, with ad dollars dipping 4% year-over-year.

The real trends to watch involve online retailers, versus those with a physical store.

Online Retailers spent 21% more on advertising in October and November 2018 compared to what they spent in the prior year.

But, did radio and TV benefit?

Meanwhile, department stores increased their ad spend by 7%.

On the contrary, specialty retailers decreased their ad spend 10% as “Other Stores” were down 14%.

Online retailers are fueling the season’s ad dollars — and much of that activity could be flowing to digital media.

Online retailers year-over-year increased their ad spend by 68% during the week of Thanksgiving.

All retailers combined decreased spend during that week by 6%, compared to 2017.