Petco Introduces Retail Media Capabilities With CitrusAd

Petco is the largest pet retailer to jump into the retail media industry through a partnership with CitrusAd.
Petco storefront

The partnership will launch CitrusAd’s retail media technology for sponsored products and display ads across Petco’s eCommerce, desktop and mobile platforms. CitrusAd, which launched in 2017, is a fast-growing retail media platform that also partnered with Target’s retail media business, Roundel, in early May.

Executive Summary

Petco’s launch in retail media highlights the sector’s huge growth over the past several years. The retailer is the first in the pet category to offer its own retail media network, but could be facing oversaturation in the future with so many new networks from retailers.


Petco’s vendors can launch sponsored products and display media campaigns across Petco’s digital platforms as either managed or in a self-service capacity. Brands can run their campaigns with a transparent dashboard to measure awareness activity, engagement, conversions and an accurate return on ad spend (ROAS).

“As part of our mission to improve the lives of pets and pet parents, partnering with CitrusAd will help Petco provide a more personalized shopping experience as our customers’ embark on their pets’ health and wellness journeys,” Darren MacDonald, chief digital & innovation officer at Petco, said in a statement. “CitrusAd’s retail media technology will help our vendors reach Petco’s strong ecosystem of pet parents and educate them on the products and merchandise that meet their pets’ specific needs.”

Executive summary

Petco began testing a retail media platform in December 2020 with several vendors that launched pilot ad campaigns. Brands experienced a 300% to 400% return on ad spending, not including an expected in-store impact, from these targeted ads, Petco stated.