MindBullets 20 Years


Shopping not so easy to revolutionize after all

Amazon earnestly tried, but for the most part, they successfully failed. Their Dash Buttons were launched in early 2015 as the e-commerce giant tried to create a future where we buy specific grocery items by pressing physical, branded buttons stuck to surfaces in our homes.

The efficiency built into the Dash Buttons has not been all that it’s cracked up to be. People have deployed the odd button in their homes, but in general, Amazon has underestimated the ritual that is weekly or bi-weekly shopping. Going to the store is not just about stocking up. It’s about the small wins when you buy the last four doughnuts at 50% off, and the unplanned window shopping that accompanies the outing.

Very few consumers are loyal to only one brand and global market research agency, Statitude estimates that up to 60% of shoppers actively choose to try out different brands. ‘Adventurous shopping’ is set to become even more of a trend in the next two years.

To add insult to injury, the buttons have been labelled ‘the biggest decor nightmare of the 21st century’ by renowned lifestyle blogger, Mi Gredeltoork. She writes: “No middle class consumer in their right mind will have those ghastly things in the same space as their Anthropologie finds!”

Some behaviours are deeply entrenched in society and the human psyche. Solutionism will not replace market days for the typical Parisian. Japanese women would never abandon their shopping outings with pals. Tech companies should take note – not everything needs fixing and an algorithm is not always the perfect answer.

Warning: Hazardous thinking at work

Despite appearances to the contrary, Futureworld cannot and does not predict the future. Our Mindbullets scenarios are fictitious and designed purely to explore possible futures, challenge and stimulate strategic thinking. Use these at your own risk. Any reference to actual people, entities or events is entirely allegorical. Copyright Futureworld International Limited. Reproduction or distribution permitted only with recognition of Copyright and the inclusion of this disclaimer.