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 […]

Rakuten’s Viber Buys Chatter Commerce, Maker of Shopping Keyboard Shopchat

Viber acquires Chatter Commerce which offers a keyboard app for iOS called Shopchat. Shopchat integrates shopping features via its keyboard into, for example, messaging apps. (This works in every iOS app.) Rakuten, which bought the messaging app Viber for $900 million in 2014, was also the lead investor in the company’s $1 million seed funding […]

Shopify’s Buzzfeed Channel and the Massive Potential for Innovation in Shoptech

Shopify’s Buzzfeed channel, of which we talked about here, has now offically been introduced. The main points from Shopify’s introduction of the new channel: The new BuzzFeed channel allows you to easily tag your products for BuzzFeed editors to search, find, and consider featuring in its campaigns, product lists and onsite content. With its unique […]

These 40+ Commerce Startups Have AI at Their Core

AI, it’s all the rage these days. CB Insights: Investors poured a record high of $4.9B into artificial intelligence (AI) startups in 2016, and AI is already affecting more areas of our lives than many people realize. Even retail and e-commerce companies are increasingly integrating the technology. While chatbots may be one of the more well-known […]

MorningSave: How the Former Woot Founders Are Building a New Kind of Shoptech Platform

“We believe in a future where there is no need for middleman retailer geography on the internet”, the former people behind Woot wrote. And while Woot under Amazon is having a hard time, its former founders, while running deals site Meh, have started another project: MorningSave, which they plan to build out into a new […]