Brands Can Now See When Snap Ads Drive Consumers To Store Locations

With 'Snap to Store,' the company takes aim at proving online-to-offline conversions.

As Snap Inc. looks to bolster its ad products in a bid to compete with Facebook and Google, the company has launched a new location-based feature, “Snap to Store,” allowing brands to see if customers visited a business location after viewing an ad.

The move is aimed at increasing value for the brick-and-mortar businesses who advertise on the platform; metrics around Snapchat views are nice, but what physical businesses really care about is if someone visited a store because of an ad.

So far, so good: Wendy’s was one of the initial beta testers of Snap to Store, and Snap noted in March that a sponsored Snapchat geofilter ad promoting Wendy’s Jalapeño Fresco Chicken Sandwich “drove over 42,000 incremental people to visit one of the burger chain’s various locations within seven days,” The Wall Street Journal reported.

“Foot traffic into our restaurants is the best measurement of short-term sales success for any program — we want more ad tech like this,” said Brandon Rhoten, head of advertising, digital, social and media at Wendy’s, in a statement.

Snapchat In Stores

Whether the timing of the product launch — which can be viewed as a competitor to Facebook’s online-to-offline offerings — is a strike at Instagram’s recent reveal of its Snapchat-like disappearing photo feature is anyone’s guess. But the fact is, there is a clear tie between Snapchat and in-store shopping.

As we reported last month following a conversation with Snapchat at London’s Retail Week, 60 percent of Snapchatters send Snaps of their retail purchases. Snap has now released additional metrics showing that 66 percent use the app while shopping at a mall, and 80 percent use the app at restaurants.

This means that businesses on Snapchat have have a significant opportunity to reach users when they are already in a shopping mindset — and now, they can measure if those messages actually succeeding in driving foot traffic and subsequent store visits.

The main question that remains: Will Snapchat maintain its user base and Gen-Z demographic dominance in the face of continued competition from Instagram and others? At present, the company is still growing, and it added 50 million users in 2016 — but only 5 million of those came in Q4. The remainder of 2017 will be a time for Snap to prove its mettle: After all, metrics only matter if the eyeballs are there.

About The Author
Lauryn Chamberlain Lauryn Chamberlain @laurynchamberla

Lauryn Chamberlain is the Associate Editor of A New York City based journalist, she specializes in stories related to retail, dining, hospitality, and travel.