Interactive Advertising Bureau
06 September 2023

IAB Europe Releases Pan-European Definitions and Guide to Retail Media Paving the Way for Industry Standardisation


Majority of Retail Media Buyers and Sellers Want Standards in Media and Attribution Measurement

6th September, 2023 - Brussels, Belgium, IAB Europe, the leading European-level industry association for the digital advertising and marketing ecosystem, today released the first pan-European definitions for Retail Media in a new comprehensive 101 Guide to Retail Media. This groundbreaking initiative created by IAB Europe’s Retail Media Working Group provides a comprehensive overview of what Retail Media is, including a breakdown of on-site, off-site and in-store definitions, and essential guidance to the buying and selling of Retail Media in Europe. The Guide serves as a valuable resource for all industry stakeholders, offering an introduction to Retail Media and its growing significance in the European Market. 

Defining Retail Media for Europe

Retail Media has emerged as a powerful digital advertising tool in recent years, but as with any emerging technology or solution it is vital to first understand and define what we mean by Retail Media and to dispel any misconceptions or confusion surrounding the different aspects of it. To overcome this challenge IAB Europe’s Retail Media Working Group has created the first pan-European definitions of Retail Media in a digital advertising sphere. Working collaboratively with National IABs across Europe and drilling down into digital on-site, digital off-site and digital in-store, these definitions help provide a clear understanding of the Retail Media, and educate industry stakeholders on how to leverage it effectively. 

Guide to Retail Media in Europe

To help support the definitions of Retail Media, the working group has also created a 101 Guide, designed to empower buyers and sellers to make informed decisions and achieve their advertising objectives through Retail Media. This introductory guide covers all the must-know aspects of Retail Media, including insights into how campaigns can be purchased, reasons why retail media is essential for brands, and an overview of available measurement and targeting options. 

Commenting on the publication of the 101 Guide, Jason Wescott, Global Practice Lead, Commerce at GroupM Nexus said The success of early adopters in digital retail media has driven more retailers to throw their hats in the ring.  More digital retail media owners means buying becomes more complex, confusing, and highly specialised, as each retailer has their own definitions, campaign metrics and attribution windows. For advertisers, this makes it hard to compare across digital retail media platforms vis-à-vis planning budgets, strategies, and campaign activations. The IAB Europe Retail Media 101 Guide will empower the industry with key knowledge on what digital Retail Media is, how it can be bought and why it should matter to brands. Equip yourself with exactly what good looks like, so you can approach the exciting world of digital retail media, with confidence.”

Creating Standards for a Thriving Retail Media Market 

A recent IAB Europe survey of over 100 Retail Media buyers and sellers found that over two thirds of buyers (70%) think the lack of standards for Retail Media is a barrier to investment. When asked about which standards are most important, the majority of buyers (90%) and sellers (84%) cited media and attribution measurement. 

Commenting on the work IAB Europe is doing to advance education and standardisation in Retail Media, Townsend Feehan, CEO of IAB Europe said: "IAB Europe forecasts that ad spend on Retail Media will reach EUR 25 billion by 2026, exceeding traditional linear TV advertising. In order to fully realise this opportunity, we need to bridge the "knowledge gap" surrounding Retail Media.  Our newly released pan-European definitions and the comprehensive 101 Guide will help industry stakeholders start to navigate this dynamic landscape. The clear call for standards that came through in our recent survey is driving our next move, with a dedicated new Retailer Council leading the work.”

The full guide is now available for download on the IAB Europe website here.


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