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A new survey commissioned by BloomReach reveals that 44 percent of US consumers go to Amazon first when searching for a product, "compared to 34 percent who use top search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo!."

This is, the company says, "a significant gain for Amazon since Forrester found in 2012 that 30 percent of consumers research products on Amazon first. Retailers fared worse with only 21 percent who say they’d start at a specific retailer.

"In addition, consumers are overwhelmingly being influenced by Web personalization technology; 87 percent said they’d specifically buy from the company that best predicts their intent and suggests products intuitively over all others."

One of the points that the survey makes is that Amazon has invested massive amounts of money in developing and implementing what is called "advanced algorithmic recommendation technology," which allows for a high degree of personalization and customization. However, as Amazon "advances the battlefield on one front, the traditional allies of retailers – the search engines – have inadvertently squeezed retailers from the other front. The BloomReach consumer survey found that consumers– by a 2:1 margin – are wondering why their favorite retailers aren’t delivering the same personalized discovery experience on site or on mobile that search engines provide on the wider Web."
KC's View:
The lesson here is that mainstream, traditional marketing efforts - whether in-store or online - simply aren't enough for a consumer population that does not just buy stuff via Amazon, but is having it expectations set by the e-commerce pioneer. If you are a traditional marketer, you need to be looking at things like Amazon Prime, Subscribe & Save, and even the Echo, and asking yourself, how do we compete with these initiatives?

You can't ignore them. Not now. Not ever. Not anymore.