How Instacart Moved Beyond Groceries to Become a Retail Media Power

The brand refined its core offering and expanded its marketplace with a few smartly delivered pivots

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At a high level, Instacart has taken an intelligent approach that may seem counterintuitive on the surface—yes, the company is best known as an online grocery destination, but its recent IPO proved the company is adept in another area as well: retail media.

Let’s examine how Instacart moved beyond its core business to set itself up for long-term success, the challenges it will continue to face in competing with the Amazons of the world, and how brands can leverage the site and data science best practices to optimize their retail media spending. 

A model of ecommerce success 

In the context of Instacart’s business model, the introduction of its advertising platform has transformed the company from a three-sided marketplace to a four-sided one.

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