The predictability of me (#retail #bigdata #shopping #data #loyalty)


You are predictable. That’s that. Game over. Even those that claim to be fair weather eclectic of tastes usually aren’t that much. Location determines what’s available around you.  Online you normally have an idea what you’re looking for already.  The shopping equivalent of Google’s “I feel lucky” button doesn’t crop up often.

One thing I do know: I’m that predictable.

On a Saturday in a location in Northern Ireland I will go to the same four shops in the same order, finish up in the same coffee shop eating the same stuff and drinking the same coffee with the same amount of sugar.

I’m that predictable.

My Chinese food order will be either beef or duck with mushrooms in a black bean sauce.

I’m that predictable.

The bus I get is usually the same.  The return train journey is usually the same.

I’m that predictable.

I can’t remember I last changed the style of the cowboy boot I wear.

I’m that predictable.

The stories I read from the same 40 sites looking for the same 10 phrases (usually retail, data, loyalty, sentiment and so on) my requirements aren’t going to change any time soon.

I’m that predictable.

When a startup says, “we can predict…”, there’s a good chance they already know. The patterns are usually clear enough to start making education predictions (or “guess” is really a better word). Your buying patterns and movements are usually that obvious. The data shadow that’s present it pretty easy to pick apart.

What’s not easy to do is do this over a large scale.  With a million users it’s data velocity and volume that are the key indicators. If you can deliver a product before the customer actually knows they want it then you’re doing a good job. Chances are the customer does really know but just forgot as they placed it at the back of their minds.

As for my next boots purchase, well, I’m that predictable…..

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