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Eye Tracking and Its Use in Marketing Strategy

Explore how companies use eye-tracking technology to inform everything from package design to digital media strategy—and discover how a master’s degree can build your expertise in the latest marketing techniques.

Why does a person choose one product over another? How does a customer decide to make a purchase? What motivates an online user to click a digital ad?

When it comes to marketing a product or business successfully, understanding consumer behavior is a big piece of the puzzle. Knowing how, when, and why consumers make their purchasing decisions is not only key to building effective marketing strategies, it’s also what customers expect. In fact, one study found that 76% of consumers want companies to understand their needs and expectations.1


Considering that 95% of buying decisions are made in the subconscious,2 understanding the complexities of consumer behavior isn’t an easy task. However, many companies have discovered eye tracking as a great way to gain insight into why consumers do the things they do.

How Do Companies Use Eye-Tracking Technologies to Inform Marketing and Communication Strategies?

First, what is eye tracking? According to Tobii, a global provider of eye-tracking technology and research, “Eye tracking is a sensor technology that makes it possible for a computer or other device to know where a person is looking. An eye tracker can detect the presence, attention, and focus of the user.”3

Essentially, with eye-tracking technology, you can study where consumers look, for how long, and their responses to what they see.

There are many ways companies use eye-tracking technologies to improve their marketing and communication strategies and grow business. From product placement and package design to online advertising and website design, companies can use eye tracking to develop marketing strategies that engage and influence consumers across traditional, digital, and social media channels.

Here are a few examples of how some brands are using eye tracking to shape strategy and enhance marketing and customer engagement:

  • Toyota:4 Using eye-tracking technology, Toyota studied how customers engaged and interacted with their dealership showrooms and promotional materials, such as digital displays, stickers, and other on-site marketing. The company used the information to make better decisions about their sales materials, product placement, and showroom designs.
  • Palace Resorts:5 This luxury-resort brand in Mexico and the Caribbean deployed eye tracking as part of a digital marketing strategy. Tapping into customers’ web cams (with user permission), the company created a microsite that allowed customers to use only their eyes to explore and personalize trip options.
  • Unilever:6 Unilever—the maker of over 1,000 brands worldwide, including well-known names like Ben & Jerry’s, Lipton, Dove, and Vaseline—uses eye tracking to understand what attracts consumer attention to products on the store shelf. The company uses these insights to increase sales through better packaging design and product placement.

While eye tracking may not give marketers direct access to consumers’ minds, the technique can provide a window into the customer perspective—allowing companies to see things the way their customers do. With this type of information, companies can make better decisions when it comes to both their marketing and business strategy.

Elevate Your Marketing Expertise With a Master’s Degree

Do you want to know more about technologies that can make your marketing and communication strategies more effective? Then you should think about earning an MS in Marketing.

One great option is the online master’s program in marketing at Walden University. The flexible and convenient online learning format is ideal for working graduate students who want to earn a master’s degree while continuing to balance their current career and life responsibilities. Online classes explore relevant topics such as digital and social media marketing, brand management, online marketing strategies, and market research techniques.

By pursuing a master’s in marketing, you can update your skill set and gain the credentials and expertise to move your career forward.

Walden University is an accredited institution offering an MS in Marketing degree program online. Expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.


Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission,