67- The human address
CEO of Rent the Runway, believes a disruptive approach is the answer. “The delivery network needs to be completely ripped up and re-created,” she said at this year’s South by Southwest Interactive. “We need to put UPS and Fedex out of business... The only way for e-commerce growth to be economically viable is if the delivery network changes.”
The startup Shyp announced “address-free shipping” in October 2015; customers have usernames synced to physical addresses and delivery preferences. Just as apps such as Venmo replace bank details with a simple username, people sending packages now only need to remember who they’re sending an item to. The address lists we now store digitally may soon seem as obsolete as the Rolodexes of decades past.
At the technology conference WSJDLIVE in October 2015, the company revealed a new service that expands access to its search data for retailers, allowing them to build geographic heat maps based on product searches across the US. The initial version of this Shopping Insights tool includes data about more than 5,000 products available through Google Shopping, targeted to 16,000 US cities and towns, updated monthly.
The Shopping Insights data reveals surprising geographical patterns— the example presented at the conference was that demand for Minion outfits was three times as high as demand for Star Wars costumes in Madison, Wisconsin, while the ratio was reversed in Berkeley, California.
Google also continues to develop its Local Inventory Ads programme, which allows mobile advertising to be targeted to consumers based on whether a given product is in stock at nearby retail outlets, and even includes information on how far away a consumer is from a given store. “Retailers’ mistake number one is that they are simply not there at the consumer's moment,” global vice president of product management and shopping at Google, said at World Retail Congress 2015 in Rome. “We see ourselves as a connector, we connect consumers with the retailer they need.”
Why it’s interesting: Why it’s interesting:
Google is finding new ways to build complex, nuanced data pools on consumer behavio8ur and harness these insights for advertising. The increased desire of consumers for real-time, location- sensitive information also speaks to the growing importance of mobile in driving retail.
Shyp by Jack Smith, Joshua Scott and Kevin Gibbon, San Francisco