Data from Dash Buttons Will Lead to Evolution of Brands & Amazon’s Private Labels

Dash Buttons

The main thing to always keep in mind is that todays manifestation of any sort of platform is to an (often underestimated) amount a spring board for future iterations. In other words: Always keep track of the options still open to platform providers. The only constant in today’s technology is that everything keeps evolving.

Fast Company is speculating on what the Dash Buttons might be useful for for Amazon:

These buttons probably aren’t meant to drive significant revenue for Amazon. The true goal, in all likelihood, is to generate data. By understanding the shopping habits of brands’ most loyal customers, Amazon has a better chance to create the shopping business of the future.

I think the Dash Buttons are meant to generate significant revenue and I think that they will, in due time. (and maybe not in the same way we know them to work today)

Generating revenue and generating valueable data are not mutually exclusive.

Nonetheless, these are some interesting ideas from Fast Company on where the Dash Buttong could go from here:

  • Instead of standalone Dash Buttons, Amazon could build buttons into the product packaging itself. Each button would work once and would be discarded along with the package. Data from Dash Buttons would help Amazon and product makers understand what products and package sizes to offer, as an integrated button would make the packaging pricier.
  • An evolved version of Amazon’s Subscribe & Save service could offer more flexible delivery timing, with Amazon’s mobile apps and Alexa assistant checking in to make sure you’re well-stocked. To make this work, Amazon would need data to understand how purchasing patterns vary for each product, and how those purchases change over time.
  • Amazon’s app and Alexa could offer to add new items to your shopping list based on past behavior, along with competing products and other items bought by similar shoppers. Dash Button data would help Amazon figure out the right products and package sizes to recommend.

Here is why, Dash Button data is valuable:

If someone owns a Dash Button, there’s a chance they’ll use it as their only way to restock a given product. This, in turn, gives Amazon a better sense of how often people are consuming household goods, how much they buy at a time, and what other products they’re buying.

“In the near term, it will allow them to define the proper quantities,” [Richard Crone, a payment industry consultant] says. “It will allow them to adjust the packaging, and the bundling of other things. So you might see what other buttons are depressed nearly at the same time as another, and the cross-brand combinations that might come up.”

In other words: The convenience of the Dash Button crowds out any other means of shopping for that particular item and in the process creates unmitigated shopping data on that item. Thus, the Dash Buttons create data you can’t get anywhere else in this kind of quality.

For brands, this spots a bright light on consumer behavior.

But this data becomes especially interesting when thinking about how far Amazon may go with the company’s private labels..

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