How BuzzFeed, Time Inc. Are Using Facebook Messenger Bots to Create Gift Guides

People shop differently for gifts than they do for products one buys for oneself. Using bots for gift shopping could turn out to be fruitful. Buzzfeed, trying to bring to e-commerce what the company has learned in producing media for a platform world, has recently launched its first e-commerce bot. This bot is built around […]

The bad User Interface of Today’s Facebook Shopping Bots

When Facebook launched the bot platform on top of Messenger we had a look at the Spring shopping bot and were not impressed. Buzzfeed went further and the verdict is not good: It just so happens I need a new pair of gym sneakers, so this seemed perfect for me to try out. Little did […]

First Bots on Facebook Messenger are Like First “Social Shopping” Pages on Facebook

At the company’s yearly developer conference f8, Facebook announced the new bot platform on top of Messenger, which is now used by 900 million people on a monthly basis. More on the new APIs at Facebooks developer blog: Send/Receive API. This new capability includes the ability to send and receive text, images, and rich bubbles […]

Here’s How Facebook Wants to Improve Discoverability for E-Commerce on Messenger

Almost one year in, Facebook’s Messenger bot platform is still looking to find its groove. The Information (paywall) has exclusive information on what Facebook is working on for the next iteration, which will most likely ship or at least be announced around April’s f8 developer conference: After two years of trying to figure out ways […]

At Least 27 Shopping Bots in the Wild, Germany based chatShopper a User Favorite

Conversational commerce, in text as in voice, remains a (growing but small) niche for now. There is a lot of potential, but also a lot of road to cover still. The Information (paywall) is looking back on a year of bot frenzy and disillusionment. Facebook, Amazon and Google are all lacking on the distribution side […]

Who Will Become the “Facebook of E-Commerce”?

Benedict Evans (analyst at VC a16z): Facebook recommends stories it thinks (based on its machine learning model) you might like. There’s not really an equivalent for products. (…) Amazon in particular and ecommerce in general is good at search. Amazon, very obviously, is Google for products. It’s good at giving you the best-seller you’ve heard […]

First Retail Partner Switches Back From Messenger to Email, But Not So Fast, Everyone Else

How Zalando uses mobile notifications. Every company needs to find its own way. There are no best practices yet, and maybe there never will be ones universally applicable. Recode on Everlane, a launch partner of Facebook Messenger’s business offerings in 2015 which is switching back from Messenger to emails: But today, Everlane emailed customers to […]

Amazon’s Most Promising ‘Stealth’ Project, the Treasure Truck, Celebrates 1st Birthday

This friday, the Amazon Treasure Truck celebrated its first year anniversary, see the offical social media updates on Facebook and on Twitter. The Amazon Treasure Truck, a location based, short-term deals model that only works with the premise of everyone owning a smartphone, is promising because it allows Amazon to do local deals with comparatively […]

From Drones to Subterranean Delivery: What Amazon’s Fantastical Patents Really Mean

An unusually high amount of patents by Amazon have made headlines over the last few weeks. What’s behind them? First, here’s a summary of some of the recent patents. ‘Flying Warehouses’ & Drones The flying warehouses, zeppelins from which drones are meant to be dispatched, brought in the most headlines. ​Readwrite: An Amazon patent, found […]

Zalando Could Become the Role Model for Winning Against Amazon

The New York Times has published a portrait of Zalando in which almost every strategic initiative at least gets named: Few companies have been able to keep Amazon — the largest online fashion seller in the United States — at bay after it enters a new market. The notable exception is in China, where rivals like Alibaba, […]