Taking note of the trends of the season is an important step in crafting a winning mobile marketing strategy in today’s increasingly competitive market. One trend we’ve written about recently is an increase in in-store shopping this Q4 holiday season. With this trend in mind, the importance of aligning a brand’s in-person and digital shopping experiences cannot be overstated. One tactic is targeting ads to users’ geographic location — what’s known as serving ‘geo-targeted ads’. In this article, we explore the best practices of serving geo-targeted mobile advertising to improve your omnichannel retail strategy this Q4.

In-store shopping sees gains in Q4 2023 

In a surprising departure from what was seen during the pandemic — when shoppers relegated by shelter-in-place regulations shifted their holiday to online channels — more consumers plan to shop in-person at stores this Q4 than in previous years. According to PwC, 40% of consumers intend to increase in-store shopping and decrease online shopping because delivery costs are too high.

As noted in the graph below, 43% of shoppers plan to make regular purchases in-store in 2023. This stands in contrast to 34% of shoppers who plan to shop regularly on mobile devices and 23% on desktop.

Source: PwC

Consumers’ decision to shop in-person to save on delivery costs reflects larger trends of greater cost-consciousness. Also according to PwC, 96% of shoppers adopted cost-saving behaviors this year.

These trends have given way to another phenomenon — consumers embracing the mix of online and in-store shopping. A notable 59% of shoppers have said they would shop online and pick up items in store according to Ampd Intelligence.

The rise of omnichannel shopping

It’s apparent consumers have shifted their shopping habits to include both digital and physical storefronts. In fact, 56% of shoppers who purchase in brick-and-mortar stores used an app or online store to conduct research first. The act of shopping across several channels — from in-store to online and mobile — is called omnichannel shopping.

The rise of omnichannel shopping behavior has shifted consumer preferences. Today, consumers expect a seamless experience across digital platforms and brick-and-mortar stores. This, in turn, has made it critical for retailers to optimize their shopping experience — leveraging strategies like flexible payment options, QR codes, and geo-targeted mobile advertising to create a personalized and frictionless experience for their customers.

Holiday shopping trends in 2023

Based on 2022 data, Deloitte has predicted that global 2023 holiday sales will total $1.54 to $1.56 trillion. According to Adobe, 51.2% of these sales will take place on mobile devices. This is a major milestone, with mobile overtaking online sales for the first time.

While these numbers are notable in an economy where inflation is rising and disposable incomes are tightening, when compared to prior holiday seasons, shopping has slowed.

According to Insider Intelligence, this year, US holiday ecommerce sales will increase to 11.3% year-over-year (YoY). While this represents a more than 4% increase in sales from last year, it’s nowhere near the rate of holiday shopping we saw during the pandemic, when sales grew by 39% in 2020.

Source: Insider Intelligence

The takeaway?

While the Q4 holiday shopping season will continue to be an expansive commercial opportunity for retailers, consumer purchasing has decelerated compared to previous years. With that said, retailers should implement strategies that most efficiently and effectively optimize their advertising dollars for maximum performance.

What is geo-targeted mobile advertising?

Geo-targeting is a type of location-based advertising that serves ads or content to individuals based on their geographic location. Geo-targeting can be undertaken via several different data signals, including country, city, zip code, or even neighborhood.

Marketing content that is optimized using location data shows higher rates of performance. According to Mailchimp, email campaigns segmented by location drove more than 62% more clicks than non-segmented campaigns.

Here are three more reasons why retailers should consider geo-targeting advertising this Q4:

  1. Personalization: Brands can increase the relevance and engagement of their campaigns by delivering personalized content to users based on their geographical location. This, in turn, can lead to higher conversion rates.
  2. Localization: Geotargeting lets retailers optimize their messaging to specific regions, with cultural nuances and preferences in mind. This localization fosters brand loyalty and a deeper connection with the target audience.
  3. Cost efficiency: Geotargeting optimizes ad spend by letting marketers target regional areas with higher potential ROI, enhancing cost efficiency.

Geo-targeted mobile advertising ideas for Q4

To maximize Q4 holiday omnichannel marketing strategy, here are three ideas for geo-targeted mobile advertising campaigns.

Increase in-store traffic with location-based promotions

Given the ongoing rise of in-store shopping, using geo-targeted mobile advertising to enhance in-store experiences is a smart strategy for retailers this year. One way to do this is serving relevant, timely offers to customers when they are near one of your brand’s store locations.

TIP: serve mobile ads, push notifications, or emails to customers that are within a certain radius of an in-store location. This content should offer compelling in-store promotions like discounts, free delivery or special holiday promotions. This will demonstrate to nearby customers the added value and convenience of in-store shopping with your brand.

Drive sales by upselling with last-minute urgency

Nothing drives purchases than a sense of last-minute urgency. Location-based advertising that includes relevant information about time sensitive offers can drive sales and upsell seasonal promotions.

TIP: Serve mobile ads, push notifications, or emails notifying customers of a time-sensitive price increase or decrease when they are in range of a store. These notifications should feature time-sensitive messaging like “limited time offer” and “ending soon”.

Bridge online and offline moments

Using geo-targeted mobile advertising to serve offers to users who have recently interacted with your mobile app is a valuable way to blend retargeting with location-based advertising. Retailers can segment users that have browsed their mobile app recently and retarget them when they are near a brick-and-mortar store.

TIP: Segment users based on their location and recent interactions with your mobile app. When a customer that has previously engaged with your mobile app or left an item in their shopping cart is close to a store location, retarget them with a mobile ad to complete their purchase in-store.


Consumers now prefer to shop across various channels, from in-store to online and mobile, creating the need for a seamless omnichannel experience. Geo-targeted mobile advertising is a location-based advertising strategy that offers personalized content, localization, and cost efficiency, leading to higher performance.

Geo-Targeted Mobile Advertising Ideas for Q4:

  1. Increase In-Store Traffic: Use location-based promotions to attract customers to your physical stores by offering timely and relevant discounts or special promotions when they are nearby.
  2. Drive Sales with Urgency: Create a sense of urgency with location-based advertising that highlights time-sensitive offers, encouraging customers to make purchases quickly.
  3. Bridge Online and Offline Moments: Retarget users who have interacted with your mobile app and are near your brick-and-mortar stores, encouraging them to complete their purchases in-store.

Optimize your Q4 holiday mobile advertising strategy with YouAppi. From acquiring new users to retargeting existing best customers, our team of experts can help your brand meet its year-end revenue goals. Schedule a meeting here