Department stores have the ability to reach hugely diverse audiences within news media. The medium attracts an impressive demographic mix of gender, age, socio-economic status, and life stage that, when combined with the appropriate news media sections, has formidable capabilities to target audiences.
While newspapers are a traditional advertising medium, this does not limit what they can achieve, demonstrating remarkable leveraging power both in-store and online.
News media readers present two key characteristics for department store advertisers: the need to spend and the desire for quality.
The number of news media readers purchasing in-store has grown significantly year-on-year. Harris Scarfe enjoyed the largest growth at 19 per cent, followed by David Jones at 6 per cent and Kmart at 5 per cent. Myer and Target saw minimal loss at 2 per cent while Big W remained steady.
Weekend newspapers, particularly the Saturday edition, are more likely to attract potential department store shoppers than weekday papers.
Seventy-five per cent of news media readers believe quality is more important than price with 62 per cent willing to pay more if the quality is high (in relation to furniture). These findings were especially resonant with shoppers at upmarket department stores David Jones and Myer, each scoring higher than the average. Mass market stores Target, Big W, Harris Scarfe and Kmart were within several points of the average for both questions.
The willingness to pay more for quality by those shopping at upmarket stores correlates to socio-economic status.
David Jones has the most significant share of AB shoppers. Thirty per cent of the store’s patronage in the last three months were social grade A shoppers, while 22 per cent were social grade B. Myer has the second highest instance, with 26 per cent of shoppers social grade A and a further 21 per cent social grade B.
Mass market department stores sit on, or near, the average of 43 per cent of AB shoppers.
The best way to reach this demographic is through newspapers, with 50 per cent of readership identifying as part of the AB demographic. The instances are even higher in national papers, with 42 per cent of readers social grade A and 23 per cent social grade B, totalling 65 per cent.
Online vs in-store: what should be the focus?
Online and in-store shoppers are quite set in their ways, preferring one method of shopping over the other. However, there are some shoppers who will indulge in both.
Online shoppers are more likely to also shop in-store, especially if shopping at a mass market retailer or Myer. Harris Scarfe and David Jones have the least amount of shopper crossover, with only 39 per cent and 44 per cent of shoppers respectively shopping in-store.
Myer’s in-store shoppers are significantly more likely to also shop online (20 per cent), followed by followed by David Jones shoppers (11 per cent) and Target (10 per cent).
Harris Scarfe has the highest efficiencies with ads in newspaper sections (specifically food and wine), followed by Myer and David Jones.
News media readers who are in-store shoppers are shown to be big spenders on women’s clothing, watches, jewellery & accessories and holidays, homewares & furnishings.
David Jones in-store shoppers index highest for watches, jewellery & accessories (+57 per cent), followed by Myer (+53 per cent). Mass market department stores index at around 46 per cent for these products.
Women’s footwear & clothing is most popular with in-store Kmart shoppers at 36 per cent, followed by Target and Myer shoppers, both at 35 per cent. Perhaps surprisingly, David Jones was the least popular for these products, indexing at only 18 per cent.
Shoppers looking to spend on holidays & airfares are 63 per cent more likely to make purchases at Harris Scarfe, followed by Myer, David Jones and Target, each at 52 per cent.
Harris Scarfe also proved most popular with homewares and furnishing shoppers, indexing highest at 34 per cent. David Jones followed at 33 per cent, with mass market stores Kmart and Target, each indexing at 29 per cent.
David Jones achieves some of the highest efficiencies when targeting in specific newspaper sections. The most effective section for targeting is technology (+95 per cent), followed by education (+86 per cent), insights and commentary (+71 percent) and business and finance (+49 percent).
Competing up market department store Myer showed similar efficiencies, with technology king at 40 per cent higher reach, followed by education (39 per cent) and insights and commentary (+35 percent). The key difference is the effectiveness of the food and wine section which indexed at 34 per cent.
Mass market newcomer Harris Scarfe proves highly effective in the social and gossip section, indexing at 71 per cent. Other efficient sections include motoring (+45 per cent), food and wine (+43 per cent) and leisure and lifestyle (+41 per cent).
Looking specifically at David Jones, Myer and Harris Scarfe, readers of weekend papers show a higher likelihood of being online shoppers. Sunday papers demonstrated the highest results for Harris Scarfe (+173 per cent) and Myer (+39 per cent). David Jones had the best result from Saturday newspapers, with readers 108 per cent more likely to shop online.
The three stores can best utilise newspaper sections to hit online readers. The food and wine section demonstrate the highest efficiency, indexing almost twice as effective. Social and gossip (+89 per cent), health (+76 per cent) and property (+74 per cent) sections are also popular.
Harris Scarfe showed the most impressive examples of section targeting for online shoppers. The social and gossip section was the standout, proving 334 per cent more efficient at reaching online shoppers. Food and wine was shown to be 270 per cent efficient, with health (+257 per cent) and travel (+225 per cent).
The insight and commentary section was most effective at reaching online shoppers for David Jones at 212 per cent, followed by property (+147 per cent) and social and gossip (+145 per cent).
The food and wine section came out on top for Myer, proving 75 per cent more efficient for capturing online shoppers. The technology section came in second at 72 per cent, followed by health (+61 per cent) and social and gossip (+60 per cent).