First-Party Data Makes Retail Media a Future-Proof Strategy

For brand advertisers looking for a viable online alternative that will perform today and after 3P cookies are gone, retail media is the obvious choice.
Updated on September 26, 2023

In the not-too distant future, third-party cookies will be extinct. This has everyone planning now for how to advertise in a post-cookie world.

At the same time, the ecommerce boom fueled by the pandemic has brand advertisers moving more funds than ever from shopper and trade budgets to the digital space.

For brand advertisers looking for a viable online alternative that will perform today and after 3P cookies are gone, retail media is the obvious choice.


It’s a 100% first-party data solution.

Want to know more? Take a look at our Retail media ultimate guide.

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Discover 11 metrics that prove the value of retail media beyond ROAS

The goldmine of retailer first-party data

First-party data is data that is collected and owned directly by the website owner – in this case, retailers. It has none of the privacy issues associated with third-party cookies. It’s also clean, reliable, and information rich. And perhaps most important of all, it’s data that’s right at the point of sale for what is the main sales channel online for most brands.

For many brands, especially those that rely on retailer distribution, they simply don’t have enough of their own first-party data to activate. For others, their data is scattered or siloed, making it difficult to effectively personalize.

That’s why retailer first-party data is so attractive. It’s a treasure trove that includes every web and app search, click, and transaction. It can show who’s browsing and buying which products, when, how often, and across which devices. It can also include a retailer’s offline data. Even with the impacts of COVID, the general rule of thumb is that about 90% of sales are offline and 10% are online, so this gives a massive boost to the data pool.

All of this first-party data enables the kind of personalized advertising that customers will still want, even after third-party cookies go away. It also enables the measurable performance that brands are increasingly interested in: since the advertising and sales are happening within the same environment, brands can link ad spend down to the SKU level.

Benefits of retailer first-party data:

  • Privacy-safe
  • Ready-to-buy audiences, at the point of purchase
  • Clean and fresh, so you can target based on up to date information
  • Includes both online and offline data, for a larger data set
  • Detailed, for more precise, effective personalization
  • Closed-loop, so you can attribute ad spend directly to sales

Retail media: connecting brands and retailers

In the last few years, retail media has emerged as a way for retailers to help brands take advantage of their valuable first-party data. With a technology solution like Criteo Retail Media, retailers can enable brands to boost visibility with display and sponsored product ads, and control everything through a self-service platform. It’s a win-win-win:

Retailers win, with a solution that helps them monetize their data and earn more ad revenue.

Brands win, with retailer intent and purchase data that doesn’t rely on third-party cookies and measurable ads that boost their product visibility on the digital shelf.

Consumers win, with personalized ads that seamlessly integrate into their shopping experience and help them find the products they are most likely to want and buy.

How will this impact brand ad budgets moving forward?

When third-party cookies go away, brands will lose a significant part of their data pool. Retail media is one of the few alternatives that can help them to fill the void left behind. Brands have already begun shifting trade and shopper budgets to retail media. This change will lead to a greater paradigm shift, with retail media taking its place as a core part of brand marketing plans, rather than an add-on.

Are you a retailer interested in growing ad revenue? Learn about Criteo Retail Media for Retailers.

Are you a brand looking to increase product sales? Learn about Criteo Retail Media for Brands.

Looking for tips on how to take your retail media to the next level? Learn how to scale your retail media program.

Ann Pyle

Ann revels in finding the simplest and clearest way to convey a thought. Her favorite word is 'moxie', which she tries to embody whenever possible. She's been developing content strategies and writing for the tech and B2B space for more than a decade. This, along with her SEO and advertising agency ...

Senior Manager Global Content

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