Episode 29: If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Join ‘Em

Did you know we will be at Shop.org in LA this September 25-27? We will be recording live! Come see us. If you haven’t yet registered, be sure to use code ‘BRICK10’ to get 10% off your registration.

Is Anyone Immune to Amazon?

There are fewer and fewer types of retailers that can escape the grips of Amazon. With their purchase of Whole Foods, this sent the grocery industry into panic mode. With Nike agreeing to sell their product on Amazon, this created panic in the athletic / shoe industry.

But, what makes up an Amazon proof industry?


Better Together

  • Online mattress retailer Tuft & Needle is deploying Amazon technology, including Echo devices, in a new brick-and-mortar store slated to open in October in Amazon’s hometown of Seattle, Recode reports.
  • That store, the fourth brick-and-mortar location for the online retailer, will feature in-store tablets that customers can use to read product reviews from Amazon, as well as Echo devices that customers can use to ask Alexa questions about the store and merchandise.
  • The store will also post QR codes that customers can use for one-click purchasing through the Amazon mobile app while in-store. Amazon Prime members who shop at the store are eligible for one-day Prime shipping of mattresses from inventory held by Amazon, rather than Tuft & Needle, according to the report.




The Future of Stores and Food

  • Retailers are also experimenting with activity detection, understanding exactly what activities are being undertaken inside the store, by whom, and how they’re being undertaken.
  • AI-infused retail experiences lies deep learning, an AI approach utilizing neural networks which nearly everyone uses, including, likely, you via applications like Google Translate and Snapchat. The technology underpins health care diagnoses, self-driving cars, and even the financial markets where your 401(k) and other retirement savings are nestled.
  • Other AI use cases in retail include better predictive and prescriptive models — essentially answering forward-facing questions like what will happen in a particular store tomorrow or this weekend — and automatic recommendations — along the lines of where new stores should be opened, what the layouts should entail, and what products should be stocked in the store and where. Shoppers’ needs and values will be better met when retail marries art and science.



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