Localogy 20/20: Store Attribution Marches On

The location intelligence sector has been somewhat turbulent over the past year. It’s endured privacy-related headwinds from public sector measures (GDPR, CCPA) as well as private sector ones (iOS13). That was the case before a pandemic upended yet another data source: people engaged in local commerce.

But according to Foursquare CEO David Shim in a Localogy 20/20 interview today, it’s more about a shift than a consumer spending standstill. That means it’s an opportunity for those who can take advantage of shifting ground to grab market share, which is precisely what we’ve seen from adaptive retailers.

David Shim Takes the Reins For Foursquare’s Next Era

$13 Trillion Up For Grabs

To wrap some figures around the above, roughly 13,000 local stores and restaurants have closed since the beginning of the pandemic, says Shim. For the sake of this exercise, if we conservatively estimate a million dollars in revenue for each, that’s $13 trillion in local spending that’s become up for grabs.

Again, this spending hasn’t gone away (some of it has) but has shifted to new ways that consumers get products. That means a shift in fulfillment methods and technologies. And the winners have been those to jump on things like mobile ordering and curbside pickup, which can be seen tangibly in financial results.

With that, we’ve seen an acceleration in the technology itself. We’re not just talking curbside pickup, but smarter systems that fire my food order at the right moment so that it’s hot and ready when I get there. Notably, these aren’t new technologies but like many things are experiencing Covid-pressured acceleration.

Besides fulfillment, advertising and media spend have also shifted. Shim says that smart eCommerce and delivery players have enlisted Foursquare’s data to pinpoint and target consumer segments that were shopping and eating out frequently in January and February. They face the biggest supply gap.

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Attribution… More Important Than Ever. 

Speaking of consumer segments, audience targeting has inflected in the pandemic. So instead of using location data for proximity marketing (targeting someone based on where they’re standing now), it’s all about targeting them based on the consumer behavior they exhibit in a broader sense.

Another shift in the art of location intelligence is the importance of attribution data, says Shim. Because there are fewer consumers transacting locally, tracking their patterns is more important than ever. Brick & mortar businesses also need an edge in now competing with eCommerce to get customers back.

As for what’s next, Shim says Foursquare isn’t pursuing more acquisitions in 2020, following two large acquisitions this year. Still, we believe there’s more consolidation to come in location intelligence for several reasons — including the need to assemble forces to compete with Foursquare’s escalating capability.

For the full on-demand session, register for Localogy 20/20. And stay tuned for lots more session coverage.

Foursquare: Factual Merger is All About Exponential Gains


Store Attribution Marches On
It seems like just yesterday knowing “foot traffic” attribution was among the most important metrics for the retail industry. Now that may be old news and there are new attribution models that have to be considered in the context of COVID-19 and the massive transformation retail is undergoing. What are the new best attribution metrics and how will they affect advertising and media choices?

David Shim, Foursquare
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