MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu here has released the results of research showing that interactive banner display advertising running in a variety of third-party websites boosted in-store sales and penetration in several of the company's retail divisions.
The interactive “PaperBoy eCircular” banner ads, provided through PointRoll's ShopLocal division, are expandable, revealing a scrollable horizontal series of items from the weekly circular for Supervalu stores within the viewer's ZIP code; each of the items is also expandable. In addition, shoppers can click on buttons to view sales items by category, a printable shopping list, or the entire online circular.
The technology “digitizes our circulars and makes the ad come to life,” said Shelly Nelson, director of connections strategy and media for Supervalu.
The ads run on hundreds of third-party websites, including food-related sites, local media sites, weather.com, as well as smaller networked sites available through Yahoo and Hotmail, said Nelson.
The study — conducted with Nielsen Catalina Solutions, Cincinnati, and PointRoll, Conshohocken, Pa. — evaluated an interactive banner campaign that ran in support of Supervalu's Albertsons, Cub Foods, Jewel-Osco, Shaw's and Acme divisions between October and December 2009.
The study looked at more than 30 million online impressions and subsequent sales among three Nielsen Homescan panel household groups: Consumers exposed to the expandable display ads; consumers exposed to a basic, non-expanding flash display ads; and consumers not exposed to any ads.
The study measured offline sales impact, incremental sales generated, underlying drivers of sales, purchase size and halo effect; it included the number of shoppers, basket sizes, demographics of each household segment and the impact on competitive marketers.
Supervalu found an overall increase in in-store sales; the company also saw an increase in penetration of households that had not shopped Supervalu stores previously. Nelson declined to disclose the amount of the increases.
In addition, the ad sales lift among exposed households was found to be three times higher for the expandable ads than for standard non-expanding flash ads, even though the average frequency on the standard ads was 75% higher. The average cost per thousand was the same for both the standard non-expanding and expandable ads. She did not disclose the cost of the expandable ads but said, “We see one of the best ROIs from this vehicle.”
The study also enabled Supervalu to “measure the value of our online spend and the benefits of more relevant and activation-based advertising,” Nelson said in a statement. “Online delivery of weekly sale items is cost-effective and is relevant to today's consumer.”
As a result of the study's findings, added Nelson, Supervalu has doubled the weekly impressions of the expandable ad unit in the retail divisions already utilizing it and will continue to roll out the program at additional divisions throughout the year, such as Farm Fresh, Hornbacher's, Shop 'n Save and Shoppers.
Nelson explained that in some cases the expandable ad campaigns are made possible by a redesign of the division's website.