19 May How Google Now will Impact the Retail Experience
The ability to search for an item online and purchase it instantly is an enemy of brick and mortar retailers.
But what if retailers could pick up the items abandoned in virtual carts and sell them to customers in person? Google Now could make that happen.
What is Google Now?
Google Now is an app that acts like a digital personal assistant. It works within the Google Search application on Smartphones to recognize a users repeated actions. Once patterns have been established, it starts to display more relevant information for the user in the form of “cards”.
How Will Google Now Affect the Retail Experience?
A new feature of Google Now makes it so that if you’ve searched for an item, and you are then near a retailer who sells it, you will be alerted. For example, if you were searching for a new bicycle this morning, then went out this afternoon and passed a store that sold bikes you’d get a ping from Google. Imagine the effect of walking into the store to find out in person if the bike is a good fit for you.
Integrating this location-based shopping feature is sort of the opposite of show rooming, where customers try out products in-store and then turn around and purchase them online. Instead, with this app users will see a picture of the item they searched for with price information as they are near a retail location, in a way similar to how an iBeacon can alert users as they near a location.
Of course, in order for this to work consumers will have to both use the Google Now app, and have location tracking enabled on their phone.
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Photo Credit: Google