Retail Marketers’ Top Digital Channels


by Ayaz Nanji

Some 41% of retail marketers say they have spent more on social media marketing this year than last year, according to a recent report from Extole.

Mobile advertising has also been a top priority for retailers, with 32% of marketers surveyed saying they have spent more on the channel this year compared with last.

Email marketing has been popular as well, with 31% of respondents saying they have spent more on the tactic this year.

Marketing channels with a significant decline in investment by retailers this year include: Display advertising (28% spent less), content marketing (28%), and paid search (24%).

Below, additional key findings from the report, which was based on data from a survey of 302 people responsible for marketing and technology at US retail companies across a range of sizes, geographies, and verticals.

Most Used Channels

  • Social media and email are the two most used digital channels by retailers, employed by 85% of respondents.

Most Effective Channels 

  • Social media ranked as the most effective tactic for acquiring customers, with 50% of respondents listing it in the top three.
  • Referral marketing, SEO, and email marketing are also seen as being effective channels for customer acquisition.

  • Email marketing is seen as the most effective channel for converting retail customers.