Twitter Acquires Mobile Retargeting Firm TapCommerce

July 07, 2014
By: Casey Houser

In news that certainly garners more than 140 characters, Twitter (News - Alert) announced last week that it has acquired mobile retargeting company TapCommerce. According to analysis at, the social media giant paid more than $100 million in the deal, potentially enhancing its ability to reach customers with specific ads that target mobile users.

The concept of advertisement retargeting is not entirely new, as there are both startups and established enterprises that capitalize on the concept. The basic idea behind retargeting is that companies can offer incentives and special deals to consumers through the use of targeted ads. After companies, for instance, recognize that consumers have left their online shopping carts without making a purchase, or browsed websites without placing an order, they can sweeten the deal on items in which those potential customers were interested.

These types of ads have proven extremely successful in desktop environments, and Twitter has experimented with mobile retargeting since at least this past December. points out that Twitter recently launched its official mobile ad program called mobile-app install ads. This program allows advertisers to reach mobile users based on demographics such as age, location, and gender, and it is possible that the acquisition of TapCommerce could strengthen this program as a whole.

Mobile users drive a bulk of Twitter's revenue. As TMC (News - Alert) reported in December, approximately 70 percent of Twitter's ad revenue comes from mobile users, and an updated report shows that 78 percent of users are accessing the social media service from mobile devices. Those numbers underscore how important it is for mobile ad retargeting to do well.

Reports show that competitor Facebook (News - Alert) has done well with the service, so there is hope for Twitter to continue that trend overall. Twitter's user base is also climbing, however, there is some speculation about when or if Twitter will begin to profit from that base. Ad revenue is the only way forward at this point, and for that, TapCommerce may prove itself invaluable.

Edited by Adam Brandt