xAd Launches Blueprints To Track In-Store, Not Just Near-Store, Visits For Location Marketing
The technology relies on physical boundaries of businesses rather than navigational map data.
Mobile location advertising technology firm xAd introduced Blueprints on Wednesday as a solution aimed at giving media buyers peace of mind that their messages resulted in a store visit or sale.
xAd says that Blueprint’s technology derives place data based on physical boundaries of business locations (the blueprint outline of the outside of a store), as opposed to navigational system data that captures the area around a street address. The problem with using map pins on a street rather than the middle of a business to understand store boundaries, xAd explains, is that “drawing a circle – or radial fence – around that point would result in grossly inaccurate store visitation data. This is also important as most businesses are actually set back from the street – some as far as over 100 meters – the length of a football field”.
For marketers relying on attribution models based on actual store visits, xAd argues, relying on proximity data from navigational systems or location history on a smartphone (as is partially the case with Google AdWords’ store visits metric, for example) may lead to misdirected or under-allocated spend because those data sources aren’t specific enough. Update: Google clarified to Marketing Land that it has a large operations team that draws the geometry of stores based on Google Earth and Street View data and that the company surveys stores and does Wi-Fi scans to accurately collect data on where store visits come from.
“Place data accuracy is paramount when using location data to define audiences or even to use as a form of attribution,” said George Rekouts, Head of Technology Infrastructure, xAd. “Knowing the actual physical area of a store can help make the crucial determination of a consumer who visited an actual store versus just passing by.”
xAd says with Blueprints, the company already has perimeters marked for more than 12 million business location in the US. Blueprints uses a visual mapping algorithm that automates 70 percent of the place creation and updates to keep up with the over 130,000 new address listings and changes processed by the U.S. Postal Service each day. Blueprints also automatically processed in-store polygons for roughly 4,000 malls worldwide, including 1,900 in the US and 200 in the UK.
According to the company, more than 10 billion ad requests come through the xAd platform daily. It counts companies such as Denny’s, Outback Steakhouse and Toyota Scion among its customers that use the platform to deliver location-based messaging to consumers.