2021: Week 21 | Retail Battle Lines are Drawn

2021: Week 21 | Retail Battle Lines are Drawn cover image
On today’s show, Snap announces cool new stuff, Twitter has lame stuff leaked, and Google unveils its retail plan to take on Amazon.


episode cheat sheet

Snap dives deeper into commerce

Snap’s Partner Summit has given us tools to look forward to 

During this year’s annual event, Snapchat announced features that are now standard in other platforms, like company profiles and gifting options (fans can pay creators). But what stood out the most for us, are the features around the Scan button, which is getting a more prominent location. Already you can use it to scan dogs or plants and get information on them. New categories will be added, like an Allrecipes lens that recommends recipes based on ingredients users scan. But, the most exciting update is Screenshop, an integration that allows users to scan a friend’s outfit or select a photo to be served shopping recos. Of course there’s Snap’s new Spectacles, which are not available to the public yet, but they will surely integrate the new features in the near future.

Will it change anything?

Snap has a reputation for being first but other platforms are catching up. It is possible they are breaking some ground with these new features and if they play their cards right, they have a clear shot at winning in the clothing industry—both in the offer for Snapchatters and in the opportunities for brand marketing.


Google’s annual developer conference

If you retain one thing only, it should be the Shopping Graph 

During its I/O (input/output) event, Google announced super cool new tech, like the hyper real Starine project, and new Google Maps features. Most notable for brands, Google described its Shopping Graph, which includes improvements to search and how it can combine with online shopping. Users will soon be able to scan an item like a pair of hiking boots and ask Google if these are good for scaling Mount Fuji. The search engine will also be able to identify a scanned object, and provide the user information, like where to buy it, what are the attributes or things to know about that product, and more. Also, consumers who shop via Google’s Chrome browser will soon see open carts “from the past couple of weeks.” Additionally, when they open new tabs users will be able to opt in to receive offers, as well as to link their loyalty programs to their Google accounts, so they will see where they can get discounts within Google Shopping results.

Will it change anything?

Yes. Search is Google’s core and if it can conveniently be used as the core service of shopping, it can have a huge impact on how we use the search engine. This would ripple into how brands think about SEO, content, advertising and even website back-end. From a business perspective, it’s been over 20 years of Google’s existence and it still dominates the search engine market by far. But when it comes to product searches, more than half of U.S. consumers use Amazon first instead. Pinterest has revealed there are now over 5BN searches—with a particular uptick in product searches—on the platform each month. And every social media platform is both a source for finding information or products and in a race to develop the best ecommerce experience possible. Meanwhile, Google’s ad offer shrunk as a result of the disappearance of third party cookies. All things considered, Google’s aggressive move into developing shopping is a survival move


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