20th June 2018

Could predictive shopping change not just the way we shop, but the way we approach marketing?

As technology continues to disrupt our way of life, a rise in one-click ordering and now, no-click ordering (thanks to the rising popularity of Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant) is impacting the way people shop. However, other than providing convenience and speed, technology hasn’t yet transformed the retail model.

According to the retail gazette, this could be about to change, as predictive shopping could be just around the corner.

While this trend is already starting to emerge with many online retailers providing customers with options to subscribe to regular deliveries of consumable items, former Halfords head of logistics and current BearingPoint director Stuart Higgins has said that predictive ordering has also started in the restaurant industry where a number of platforms are offering predictive ordering solutions, tying together weather and major events with historical data from their existing restaurant POS systems to predict customer footfall, help restaurants prevent shortages, and avoid over-buying of perishable foods.

“It can only be a matter of time before similar capability is available for online grocery shopping and home delivery.” He added.

For the consumer, this brings even more convenience, but where does it leave brands?

According to Hugh Fletcher, Global head of innovation at Salmon, consumers’ loyalty to the brand is already diminishing in the face of convenience and speed of delivery, “If they don’t specify a brand of dish cleaner, then the AI will make the decision for that consumer based on their preferences, not on what ad just showed up on TV.”

From our experience of working with brands and companies, we believe in embracing the change and evolving with the industry you’re in. Brands may have to change their marketing tactics with retailers and distributors in mind rather than the consumer. So it may not be just the retail model that changes but the way brands approach their marketing strategy.

The key obstacle for this technology however, is the fact that people, enjoy shopping and that doesn’t look likely to change any time soon.

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