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Amazon Puts Store Customers Under the Microscope

Amazon Puts Store Customers Under the Microscope

What if you could tell how many in-store shoppers who picked up your product from a shelf actually purchased the item? If you’re a brand, that’s useful information, and it’s especially helpful if you could tell whether any of those shoppers later purchased the item online.

That’s the premise of a new service from Amazon. Store Analytics offers brands insights about the performance of their products and marketing campaigns, the company announced on Wednesday.

“Store Analytics provides brands with aggregated and anonymized insights about the performance of their products, promotions, and ad campaigns in Just Walk Out technology and Amazon Dash Cart-enabled Amazon Go and Amazon Fresh stores in the U.S.,” Amazon said in its announcement.

To be clear, Amazon stated in a FAQ, “we are not sharing any video or images of shoppers with brands as part of this service.”

The company is using the same kind of data analysis to stock store shelves as it does to stock its virtual shelves with products and advertisements. Amazon continued, “These insights will help those same stores continuously improve the shopper experience by making the store layout easier for shoppers to find their favorite items and discover new ones, improving selection and availability of products, and delivering great value through relevant promotions and advertising.”

In fact, it wrote, “advertisers running in-store campaigns such as digital signage will see associated performance metrics in their ad campaign reports.” But Amazon said it doesn’t have plans to allow brands to target ads based on Store Analytics data “at this time.”

Some people might think the concept of Amazon Store Analytics is creepy, and Amazon said it understood that not all shoppers want their data used for Store Analytics, “even though what is shared is always aggregated and anonymized.” Shoppers can opt out and still use Just Walk Out and Amazon Dash Cart technology, it said.

In a FAQ about the new service, Amazon explained, “We do not share anything that can be linked back to any individual shopper, rather only offer totals, averages, and percentages about product, promotion, and ad campaign performance—for example, the service could share how many shoppers interacted with the brand’s in-store product and either purchased it during the visit or later on Amazon.com.”

While it may sound concerning to some, the retail industry has been gathering and analyzing data for decades. You can read more about Amazon’s in-store analytics offering on the AboutAmazon corporate blog.

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). She is a member of the Online News Association (Sep 2005 - present) and Investigative Reporters and Editors (Mar 2006 - present). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com. See disclosure at EcommerceBytes.com/disclosure/.

One thought on “Amazon Puts Store Customers Under the Microscope”

  1. The technology industry has always been headed by and staffed with creepy people. Many of them have very poor social skills and have trouble understanding human interactions.

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