The Future and Consequences of AI and Voice-Driven Retail
September 13, 2018 at 1:01 pm

New research from Voicebot.ai reports that nearly one in five adults in the U.S. already has access to a smart speaker (e.g., Alexa, Google Home), although they might not necessarily have their own. This equates to roughly 47.3 million people, or 20 percent of the U.S. adult population. Considering that Amazon.com didn’t release its Echo speaker until…

Product Quality Trumps Price for Consumers, Study Finds
July 26, 2018 at 12:17 pm

As brands and retailers endeavor to unlock the mystery surrounding consumers’ shopping habits and behaviors, the question of product quality vs. price comes into sharper focus. According to recent research from technology company First Insight, consumers are increasingly choosing quality. In fact, 53 percent of consumers who responded to a First Insight survey said product quality was the…

Marketing Stack From Hell
April 3, 2018 at 9:49 pm

Steve Jobs thrived at balancing the complexity that drives powerful computational systems with the simplicity required for utility. “Simple can be harder than complex,” Jobs said. “You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move…

Black Friday is Dead … And Other 2018 Retail Predictions
January 24, 2018 at 10:19 am

Each day, the world seems bigger, more diverse and moves much faster. Predicting the future — always a dubious proposition — seems like a fool’s errand in this climate, given the dizzying pace of disruption. But as Peter Drucker once said, “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” For retailers, that…

Decoding Price Elasticity to Unlock Revenue and Minimize Risk
November 8, 2017 at 11:15 am

It’s no secret that there has been a shift in shopping behavior due to growth in millennial spending power, aging of baby boomers and the growth of online shopping. These changes are impacting pricing and demand, and are creating a disconnect for retailers and brands between what they're charging and how much consumers will actually…

Ready or Not, Digital-First Retail is Here
October 23, 2017 at 11:01 am

Supposedly, Tori Spelling once said, “bad shopping habits die hard.” The "Beverly Hills 90210" actress was probably talking about her own shopping habits, but in a larger sense, Spelling, who helped personify consumerism in the 1990s, when the mall was king and Amazon.com was merely another dot-com, pretty much nailed today’s retail business, where bad habits…

Virtual Reality IRL at Shop.org
September 28, 2017 at 3:06 pm

The future is now. This thought went through my head several times this week at Shop.org in Los Angeles, especially when I was sampling some of the virtual reality (VR) immersive experiences that were on display on the trade show floor. The VR experiences I've demoed in the past have been proof of concepts designed…

Cutting-Edge Retail Tech On Display at XRC Labs’ Demo Day
September 20, 2017 at 10:26 am

Have you ever heard of XRC Labs, the innovation accelerator for the retail and consumer goods industries? If not, you may want to get to know it. It's doing some pretty interesting things with retail technology. Each year, XRC Labs runs two 14-week programs designed for startups in the retail technology space. XRC Labs provides…

Brand Voice Will Take on an Entirely New Meaning Very Soon
August 21, 2017 at 11:30 am

When I see people hunched over their phones, eyes fixed on screens, I think of the evolutionary chart that hung in biology class. The chart depicted a chronology of human ancestors, each one slightly more upright than their predecessor, until finally, we arrived at modern human, standing tall, except for when he or she is…