Will the “Buy It” button be the dominant shopping e-channel in the future?

I have posted about Actv8.me in the past and now with the introduction of Pinterest’s “Buy It” button we are seeing a huge movement into the this new digital shopping experience. Shoppers now have the ability to use different kinds of applications like Pinterest and Houzz to see products in a different way and then actually buy them.

Let’s look at these three different models and compare:

Actv8.me gives a shopper with an iPad or mobile device to synchronize what they are watching on TV to buy products they are currently viewing in the show. This could be anything, a shirt or sweater someone is wearing to a table or a couch in the scene. This is of course driven by the television show and opens up new advertising opportunities for the show.

Houzz is another cool site I know many women like because they get to see household products in the context of a scene or picture. It even connects you with local designers, and construction companies:

Houzz - designers

The real beauty of the site is the ideas section. Once you fill out your profile of what you are looking for you can get categories of ideas for those selections.

Houzz - Ideas

These ideas are professional designers getting “their look” out to the public, a form of crowdsourcing. Houzz has a shoppers section but it also allows shopping and pricing from the different things right within the idea pictures. I am seeing more and more people using Houzz for their next great project and how cool is it to just click and buy. Their mobile application is actually addicting and you find yourself just flipping through some amazing ideas.

Buy it on Pinterest is the latest announcement where Pinterest users will be able to buy the items they see in the boards they subscribe to. I really love Pinterest and use it a lot for various reasons from fitness, cars, motorcycles, commerce, etc. Once eCommerce platforms support the Buy It button on Pinterest it makes me wonder how many people will be going to a company’s site versus their Pinterest board. Think of it as somewhat of a “free” eCommerce site where people pin and promote your products to the masses. I really think this could be a game changer in the eCommerce space and even allow smaller mom and pop shops to get a digital shopping experience for their products in a much cheaper and convenient way.
Buy it on Pinterest

Imagine the analytics around these solutions. With access to what boards you follow and what “pins” you like, the marketing teams for these companies can get a better idea of your tastes and who you are – essentially streamlining their ability to properly cross sell and up sell to you.

If you have any other “Buy It” now types of applications comment here and let me know, I am always interested in hearing about different ways to shop, especially in different countries. It would be great to learn what applications others across the world use in this context.

Is Pinterest in your marketing plan?

We all have our favorite stores and products and usually expect marketing emails to come from the company itself. But did you know Pinterest has been sending “Price drop emails” since last year (2013)? This is great for people who pin products to a “Wish List” board or simply “like” a product and may have intentions of buying it later.

From a consumer perspective I really like the Pinterest model for two primary reasons:

  1. I provide no information to the actual company and don’t receive “tons” of emails daily or weekly on things I could care less about
  2. I only receive price updates for the products I personally pin

I pinned this watch last year, unfortunately I pinned it because I got the watch as a Christmas present so I really don’t care about the price changes. Maybe Pinterest should have a “Did you purchase this?” option when pinning a product so these emails are not sent.

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 10.43.20 AM


Today, I received an email telling me the price has dropped:

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 10.46.02 AM

Adding the Pinterest “Pin it” button to WebSphere Commerce

pinit-aurora1With social media becoming more and more popular many sites offer a “Pin it” button for their products to be posted on Pinterest. If you are working in WebSphere Commerce and modifying the Aurora storefront, here is a quick snippet of code you can put into the ProductDisplay.jsp to enable this functionality.

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Smarter Commerce Info Graphics on Pinterest!

Just in case you missed this, the Smarter Commerce team has created an Infographics category on their Pinterest place. I am a very visual person and I really like these kinds of graphics to tell a story.

It also looks like they are preparing for the Smarter Commerce Global Summit in May and created a Gayload Opryland Hotel & Convention Center category so stay tuned!

If you have not signed up for this event then make sure you do. It has a packed agenda of IBM’s customers giving testimony to their Smarter Commerce story and how IBM’s solutions are helping them in execute their eCommerce strategy.

My new Pinterest board for some GIMP work I have been doing

Check out my new Pinterest board, I play with GIMP a lot in my spare time.

Link to board is here.

I followed this video I found on YouTube, I think this is the best video showing the mask layer concepts in GIMP. It is amazing how easy it is to do something like this in GIMP.

Why you should add a calendar to your eCommerce site – Fab.com

I was playing around on Fab.com and I found it interesting it had a “Calendar” link at the top of the page. I clicked it and I was put to a calendar like page showing the Daily Sales specials coming up in the next week. I think this is an excellent concept for eCommerce sites. It is sort of like their own news paper of coupons right on the site. Knowing when a sale for an item you are interested in is key in the commerce space. Many companies hold promotions or sales on future dates and advertise product or group sales in advance. This is the first time I have seen a company actually promote individual item sales on their site in a calendar format – very cool indeed.

Fab.com also has a nice little widget that rotates the number of likes products have on their site. Once again, great feature. Nicely placed rotating content that is not obtrusive to the site and may actually lead to sales. The cool fade in and fade out java script gives it an elegant look and feel.

Lastly, I can not tell you enough how much Pinterest is changing the online commerce world. If you have sharp images of your products and allow customers to “Pin It” then  you are clearly headed in the right direction. Pinterest is the next “big thing” and the concept is simple, its a virtual pin board.

These guys clearly take pride in the design of their site. I can easily see many commerce related sites using many of these features. Great job Fab.com!