A weekly podcast with the latest e-commerce news and events. Episode 251 is our annual predictions episode for 2021 and a recap of our 2020 predictions.
2020 Recap – Predictions made on episode 204
2020 Predictions Recap
- Shopify wilts a bit – new competition comes out with different angles (marketcap stays static) – No
- Fedex does something drastic – buy eBay? Merge with Alibaba? No (but shoprunner for 0.5)
- The year of returns – “happy returns” – a startup raises $100M+ in space. No (but 0.5 for year of returns)
- Mallageddon continues At least another 8k stores Yes 8721 stores +1
- Google gets aggressive in ecommerce Yes +1 (Bill Ready, etc…)
- Walmart – growth slows due to completion of grocery build out. Marc Lore leaves Walmart. No on growth, yes on Marc Lore (0.5)
- Amazon – Opens affordable grocery concept. Digital grocery wars heat up. Yes
- Owned brands continue to grow. 5% of retail in 2019, could be 8-10% in 2020 (as measured by IRI, for CPG private label). Yes
- Installment Payments heat up – At least one company is acquired (Affirm, Afterpay, Klarna, QuadPay, Sizzle) Yes (IPO’s)
- Digital in-store heats up, QR codes make a comeback Yes
- Made to Order apparel business > 9 figures
- Retailer offers viable health alt insurance option to consumers
- Grocery E-Com > 10% someone deploys(not pilots) MFC
- Amazon Shopify Competitor (shipping solution)
- Retail Media > $20B
Bonus – More store closures in 2021 than 2020.
- Amazon move to same day prime by opening a huge wave of neighborhood DCs (near DSPs)
- Shipping (Shopify) – launch own DSP
- Shopify marketplace
- ‘zero friction addiction’ sticks – I’ve seen 30-40% repeated a lot, I think it’s 60-80%. commerce penetration says at 16% or better in 2021.
- spac/ipo? Dnvb wave
Bonus: post-covid anti-consumerism/materialism wave
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Episode 251 of the Jason & Scot show was recorded on Thursday, January 21st, 2021.
[0:24] Welcome to the Jason and Scott show this is episode 251 being recorded on Thursday January 21st
2021 that’s a lot of twenty ones I’m your host Jason retailgeek Goldberg and as usual I’m here with your co-host Scot Wingo.
[0:42] Hey Jason and welcome back Jason Scott show listeners.
It’s our annual tradition here at the Jason Scott show put out some predictions it’s a little bit of a Jason versus Scott competition to see which of us is best at predicting the trends,
and the future of retail e-commerce and payments.
[1:01] If you’ve been following us for a while way back in episode 204 that’s when we made our predictions for 2020 we did that in I believe January of 2020 just like we’re doing here in 2021.
And way back then we combined an annual recap and then we did our predictions and that show was six hours,
so being why is podcasters we decided that’s a lot of Jason Scott to just in one sitting so,
good news we have split it up this year so last week we did the annual recap and then this year that frees us up to do the predictions.
So what we like to do here is go through our predictions and score how we did so that’ll be the first half of this episode,
and then to make it fun we like to read each other’s predictions and see how the other person did and then try to do a,
yeah a negotiation I guess I would call it yeah so we try to come to terms with some kind of a scoring it’s always hard is.
Use a bit Jason so bad try to try to sandbag a little bit so we’ll see if that works out this year.
Jason anything you want to add before we jump into it.
[2:18] No I want this to be one of my favorite shows of the year but as you alluded to I generally get shellacked so bad that it starts out fun for me and by the end I’m just totally depressed.
[2:31] Yeah well we’ll see we’ll see how it goes free this year.
[2:34] Yeah it’s a new year so I’m optimistic it’s like the San Diego chart or La chargers at the beginning of the Season before they have to pay anyone.
[2:44] I will say when we first started podcasting you said Scott I’ve read all these articles in the biggest thing is being consistent and that was in 2015,
so dang if we haven’t been consistent so we started in November of 2015 so then we did 16 17 18 19,
20 so this will be our sixth year of making these predictions if I’m doing my math right.
[3:08] That I don’t think you are right.
[3:11] I may have an N plus 1 from this is either our fifth or sixth year of doing these predictions.
[3:18] We’ll get the intern on that but let’s let’s jump into them so I have your 2020 predictions in front of me,
and your first one was kind of Doom and Gloom you is I’m recalling in January of 2020 Shopify was very hot and Buzzy and
I believe your prediction was that they would Wilt a little bit and that new competition would come on in with more Innovative angles and that they would have a decline.
[3:48] Yeah I kind of blame you for this when you get me so sold on headless Commerce I probably jumped the gun a little bit also again we made these predictions in January and I don’t think we had even heard of coronavirus at that point.
I don’t know do you remember.
[4:04] It was not common because I had a trip coming up at the time to China I had actually like they were starting to like,
mildly talk about it in January then but definitely yeah these predictions were not influenced by any Corona awareness.
[4:24] So this was a total zero.
[4:27] Yeah I want to say their stock was at 450 when you made that prediction and you can get it for the budget price of 1193 right now.
[4:35] Yeah it was super overpriced and then covid hit and then the revenue surged from like 50 percent growth to a hundred percent growth and then the stock followed and yeah so that was a bad one so that that one was a zero it was a dud.
[4:49] It’s good it’s good to get one of those under your belt though,
um so then your second prediction was that FedEx would do something dramatic like by eBay or merge with Ali Baba.
[5:06] Yeah the driver on this one is you know the the Amazon is exerting pressure across multiple ecosystems simultaneously and one of them is shipping,
and I do feel like UPS and FedEx are feeling that pressure again the pandemic just kind of change this one so everyone I think.
Yep stopped worrying about oh my gosh what’s going to happen with the Amazon to how do we ship so many packages and so this was a Miss 2,
I will throw myself to the the jury though there was the shop Runner acquisition which I think is massively.
This effectively gives FedEx a complete Prime competitor so they’re going they’ve won up to Amazon.
Shop owners better than Prime 10 times as many subscribers I.
[5:57] I believe.
[5:58] Well I have to have someone fact.
[5:59] Amazon might actually be getting out of the Prime business because they just they don’t want to compete with the the FedEx shop Runner duopoly.
[6:08] Could happen.
[6:09] Yeah I totally see the spirit of this prediction there was a lot of financial stress on FedEx and yeah I could you could imagine something,
big happening I think this illustrates to me like one of my biggest learnings from having done a bunch of these prediction shows which is.
Having a good idea of what might happen isn’t even as useful as,
getting lucky on the time Horizon because I feel like you and I have both made predictions that.
But we’re just too early right or or something like that so still wouldn’t surprise me to see,
some dramatic evolution of those those carriers I’ll give you half a point for shop running because I’m a generous guy,
I believe in the earnings call someone asked if chaperone was going to have an impact on their financials and they said not that it wasn’t a material acquisition but.
I kind of suspect sharpener was a little bit of a sort of a budget exit for for shop Runner.
[7:18] That’s corporate speak for this is the future of our company.
[7:22] Who knows maybe maybe it will be I hope it is for them so I’ll give you I’m giving you zero on Shopify I’ll give you half a point for for shop Runner I believe they also bought a cardboard box company that you failed to mention.
[7:37] Okay number three.
[7:41] Yeah so number three this will be the year of returns and you predicted that happy returns which is one of the the vendors that facilitates e-commerce returns,
would make a huge cash raised in the in the space you said they’d raise a hundred million dollars.
[8:03] In this one I failed to learn from many of your failures which are being too specific so I was super specific here I tried to capture it by making your returns,
I will again throw myself to the jury that we did have returned again so the,
other side of the ship again coin is we are now swimming in returns you know could be,
super specific and say that really didn’t happen in the year it did happen in the bookends of our episodes though so I don’t know,
I’ll be generous to you on that one for one of your predictions of you be generous to me so I do feel like it is a big return to your and there were several articles written about the you know this,
there’s one did you see it where it should look UPS facility and people like literally swimming in packages,
so you know I do think it was a year of returns where there was a much brighter light.
Shine on that but happy returns did not raise their hundred million bummer for those guys,
there was so I did look and there was a fair amount of funding activity so happy return this has raised 25 return logic to,
Loop returns 15 million so it is a hot category I get a lot of calls from VC’s poking around this category so.
So I don’t actually know how to score this one so I’ll defer to you.
[9:25] Yeah I’ll give you half a point because I agree it was just a poorly worded prediction I think the spirit of your predictions that it would be a significant year for returns is fair.
As it happens like it’s going to be 20 21 is going to be the big return year and while there was a lot of returns the first half of January a lot of that still,
going to be in progress and we certainly haven’t seen any of the numbers yet but I would certainly concur that there’s going to be a lot of.
Interesting things going on in returns this year in response to,
do you know the huge spike in e-commerce sales we saw we saw last year so I’ll give you half a point.
[10:09] So generous.
[10:11] Yeah well you know it’s the I feel like when you when you lose by a lot like there’s no point in playing really tight defense.
And I feel like this next one is not going to be very controversial on the scoring.
Mulligan and continues in 2020 and I thank you you couldn’t have known what a disaster 2020 is going to be from malls or would be come from Al’s.
Foot traffic in the malls is probably down fifty percent for the year,
sales for the anchor stores is down more than 30 percent for the year so is a disaster again you are pretty specific on your prediction you you said that at least 8,000 stores would close and,
I believe that the source that you and I must use for that had the number at 8720 one so you you cleared it by 10%.
[11:10] Yeah this is where oddly enough to pandemic Health my prediction.
I don’t know I feel like I feel like there’s some be another feel like the big wave is actually coming this year have you seen any predictions on that are you going to punch suffocate on that.
[11:25] So I do have a mild prediction in the space like the the public prediction that comes up most often is,
it is a huge amount of stores closing but over a five-year period so not necessarily all this year or next year
but like 25 percent of retail stores closing over the next five years is the is the number and a thousand Mall’s closing over the next five years are the are the,
kind of often reported public ones.
[11:56] Yeah I could see it I’m I’m for newer listeners I’m down in North Carolina and,
we have I’m in the Raleigh-Durham area there’s a little town called Carrie and it has kind of like a beam all and it just go by by epic games and they’re going to turn it into a headquarters I’ve been doing some little road trips around like going to the mountains recently,
and the malls up there are literally maybe like 10% of the stores are open it’s like the weirdest thing in these small Southern malls that used to have,
if they’d have a belk a Sears a JC Penney and Macy’s.
Generally two of those anchors are gone and sometimes they’ll be 1 acre left sometimes maybe none so you’ll be in the mall and like the whole anchor is just like cordoned off with effectively duct tape or sometimes they’ll put some really weird stuff in there like,
little tables of these people selling random tchotchkes like almost like a bizarre but I think it’s really really very odd and then there’s all these other weird dead parts of the mall where they’ll put in,
you know like they’ll have like Thursday night Magic the Gathering night no.
But it’s like 8,000 square feet used one night for some you know game event for something so it’s really strange going into some of these malls that are on their last leg.
Excuse me the that the top malls are still doing pretty well although they were even negatively affected by by covid but yeah you know covid-19,
apparel is already in trouble and covid-19 you / rough on apparel and of course.
You know as apparel goes department stores go and his department store just go malls go so you basically had covid knocking down this,
of dominoes and yeah it’s it’s going to be pretty rough couple of years for you know I personally doubt that we’re ever going to see.
Department stores or apparel stores or malls get back to kind of pretty pandemic levels.
[14:03] I know this one took shop so let’s move on.
[14:05] Yeah exactly figuratively and literally and so then your fifth prediction in this one’s going to be yeah I’m going to be curious to hear you you talk to this one Google gets aggressive in e-commerce.
[14:19] Yeah and
this one I was careful to not say that it would work and so what they did if we kind of recap the highlights of 2020 from Google what they’ve done is they hired a guy Bill ready from PayPal so they went out and found someone that,
you know has e-commerce chops to bring into the company,
he immediately kind of opened up Headey throttled Google shopping so let every Merchant kind of come in there then they’ve invested a lot on,
this program is really weird because it has like 16 different names I like by on Google but they don’t really call it that they call it Google shopping actions I think it’s at the latest name.
[14:58] I think you are correct yes.
[15:00] Yeah which doesn’t really make any sense to me so again I didn’t say they’d be effective on these things it’s just say that,
aggressive so then they that sir I think of that as their Marketplace I don’t think they like to call it that but to me it’s a Marketplace because you buy on Google and just like buy on Amazon and then they were out the order to you versus sending people to your website your,
your responsive website so they took away all the missions for that so that advertisers would would utilize it more and and I guess they must have gotten,
push back and then so and then they’ve been they also change the commission’s on Google shopping they.
I remember they changed economics I couldn’t find an article to find the time on that but I remember that happening there too so yeah and then you know the,
those are the things that say they got a little bit of aggressive there.
[15:57] Yeah well so I think with your caveat I’ll totally agree and give you a point I think they did.
Do do a lot and I’m not even going to say that they have won’t work but they haven’t yielded.
Significant results yet but but certainly like we’ve seen a lot of activity there so I’ll give you the point,
so you get Molly get in in Google full points so that’s two I gave you half for FedEx and happy returns so that’s three out of five for your 2020.
[16:30] Awesome 60% predicting that’s a it’s actually pretty good,
one thing I would comment on here that’s interesting is there was a report out by Cowan John Blackledge and,
I tweeted on this and I sent it to you Jason not know if you had time to read it but they went out and did a survey and I’ll let you opine on surveys but it was a lot of folks like you so as a lot of these super fancy Executives at Ad Agency type places.
[16:58] Most of them had shorter titles than me.
[17:00] That have long titles except longest titles where yours is longest and effectively said you know what are you seeing with Amazon ads and I thought it was really fascinating,
the I don’t want to spend our whole show on it but one of the ones that really got my attention was you know,
there was the usual do you see people spending more or less on Amazon ads and Evans like more and then the most interesting one was amongst your client base where are the dollars coming from,
and one way they asked the question it was like largely TV but then another way they asked the question it was kind of like,
within your maybe they think the question had a digital framing so it was kind of like within your,
customers digital budget where the dollars coming from and it was like 80 percent Google,
number one was Facebook so it was like really taking sheer from Facebook but then also from Google Now they didn’t I wish the had gotten a little bit nuanced there because you and I know,
critical Google includes a fair amount of double-click kind of banner ad type stuff display.
[18:14] They didn’t explicitly say Google search so it would have been nice to see in that broken out because it could be what the the digital strategic,
senior VP directors were saying was you know it’s Google display not Google search but in any case,
the message to me was Amazon’s number three,
pretty far behind the duopoly of Facebook and Google but you know they the other chart those interesting was the asking you know what do you say what are your clients say has the highest return on ad spend and Amazon was like Head and Shoulders above,
so it’s really fascinating reading all the survey results directionally said to me.
[19:00] You know if I’m Google and Facebook I need to be paying a lot more attention to what’s going on in Amazon and figure out how to try to stop them,
so that was the reason I made this prediction and I think anything I would,
I haven’t done this but I do think you’re going to see the rest of the ad world really Step Up,
and then the thing this new is the increased pressure so they got Amazon one front they’ve got kind of privacy concerns on the other,
and then like iOS is coming you know more about this than I do but iOS is coming out with this thing that’s just kind of like really kill a lot of their tracking,
and then then you got the government coming after them on the other side so so it’s gonna be really interesting to see you know Facebook Google and how they navigate this this three-way encroachment that’s happening on.
[19:50] Yeah yeah there’s a lot of market dynamics going on it’s super interesting and you know I think you summarized it pretty well I would just for listeners that don’t follow adtech that much.
[20:02] 2021 is a weird year a lot of traditional television you know goes on new programming a lot of which didn’t come out this year and on Live Events a lot of which didn’t happen this year so you know it was super easy for marketers to shift,
a lot of those event television dollars to other channels so digital got a lot of those dollars but then there was a lot of.
Politics and controversy going on in the world and there was a lot of concern around brand protection when you just you know bottle out of digital ads on Facebook would they show up next to,
you know inappropriate negative news and all sorts of other things and so one way in which Amazon,
benefits is it’s a very brand safe place like there’s no negative editorial on Amazon it’s very brand safe place to put your money in a storm and I would basically agree with the sentiment of the Cowan survey,
amongst all my clients Amazon has the most mindshare as a,
a new advertising vehicle I would I would almost argue they have too much mindshare like people people are irrationally focused on them,
and I you know I’m not sure they always measure their ads in the best way so I would I would always be curious to talk with someone about what their success criteria are when they think that Amazon has the highest row ads but,
um but that’s maybe for another show.
[21:31] Yeah we’ll do a am Jason debunks your Amazon row s shop that’ll be a barrel of monkeys.
[21:36] Exactly not saying it’s a it’s I mean it’s a good vehicle there’s good eyeballs to be had there but it definitely needs to be part of a portfolio and you strategically.
[21:45] Okay I’m just giving you a hard time well ads Chief row as bubble popper to your title okay let’s jump into your predictions.
[21:57] Yeah I know the audience is super excited for these.
[22:00] I’ll create a dramatic pause here.
Number one Walmart this one you are very explicit you said Walmart’s growth is going to slow way way down,
because they’re gonna lap their Grocery and people are just so tired of curbside grocery just.
Done with it it’s just so boring and then you said,
and and I’ll put a huge emphasis on the ant here and Mark Lori leaves Walmart so as you and I know with logic gonna have both sides of that and this is clearly not a norm.
So first I thought you were going to win this one with that first with the mark Laurie thing so this is a bit of news Mark Laurie hat is leaving Walmart it was announced.
This week last week.
[22:52] You asked for it yet.
[22:53] Last week.
He’s going to build the city of the future how exciting is that you did not have that in your prediction so I think that’s a Miss if you could if you had had Mark Lori Leafs Walmart to them say future I would have just like,
drop the mic and giving you a thousand points and walked off at this point in the show,
so in all seriousness the growth did not slow the pandemic cut against you on this one you know Walmart’s been growing at a tremendous Pace due to endemic and they were the only store open,
so that has really helped them immensely during during these times,
so since you were generous with generous with me I will be generous with you and that’s definitely a half point because of the Lori part but the first part is kind of smelly so,
I think I’m just being so so generous here.
[23:42] Yeah I’m not sure it’s any more smelly than the Shopify will crater,
so I feel like we have parity there the differences I gave you half a well not you only had the Shopify prediction I feel like it’s pretty clear this I have Point prediction my I feel like my logic behind Walmart was sound and
thrilled to be wrong sorry sorry for why I’m wrong but obviously grocery to dramatically accelerated so I couldn’t I couldn’t have been more wrong on that half,
but almost certainly the first place anyone heard that Mark Glory might be leaving Walmart was was on our show a year ago so.
I’ll take that.
[24:23] And then yeah so good work on that one but you missed the city of the future thing.
And I’m going to be excited you know hopefully Mark if you’re listening we would love to be the podcasters for the city of the future I think I think we would be doing a good job there Jason wants to be would you say you want to be the Marshal or the sheriff or something you want to ride on that.
[24:40] That would be even cooler especially if I get to wear like Mandalorian armor but I was I was hoping for deputy mayor.
[24:49] Okay Deputy Mayor do you get to ride horses deputy mayor or no.
[24:53] I feel like if your Deputy Mayor you get to decide what you write.
[24:58] You guys have that sense of cowboy up there in Chicago you could you could borrow his horse.
[25:02] Yeah I’m hoping the story city of the future is somewhere tropical but I’m kind of worried that Manhattan is so affordable right now that he might buy that and turn it into a city of the future.
[25:13] Brooklyn strict strikethrough city of the future.
Um okay you’re number two was related to Amazon and you did a little clever hedging here you said they’re going to open an affordable grocery Concept in the digital grocery Wars will heat up,
you are really right on the digital grocery were part of that that one how do you score yourself on the opening up an affordable grocery.
[25:41] I scare myself a hundred percent they we now have five Amazon Fresh stores in California and two in Chicago.
[25:52] And then what’s the that’s the big one that has them – cart thing right.
[25:57] Yeah yeah so it’s – card it’s like a 20,000 square foot grocery store and it’s it’s you know very competitive prices on Main Line groceries as opposed to the,
that expensive premium brands that are exclusively carried at Whole Foods.
[26:14] Whole paycheck.
[26:15] Exactly the hey.
[26:15] Um Okay cool so that that’s a plus one.
[26:19] Yeah and grocery words heated up more than I could have ever known thanks to covid-19.
[26:24] Yeah yeah that was a nail down.
Um number three owned Brands continue to grow five percent of retail and to five percent of retail in 2019 could be eight to ten percent in 2020 as measured by RI for CPT private label.
I don’t know what the back into that means but yeah how did Dad Edge do.
[26:48] I got it I’ll be on it so iri is a data reporting company that tracks,
sales by product category in,
the grocery and mass base and they they have a data set for private label.
In hindsight I inadvertently sandbagged this a little bit I think the spirit of what I intended was that.
Private label would rapidly grow in 2020 in that that has absolutely been true it’s growing it like four times the,
pace of national Brands the penetration according to iri is actually a little higher than I wrote here so they’re fifteen percent right now.
So I feel like I hit both the spirit and I inadvertently wept the number more than I meant to.
[27:44] Wow now do they break out private late what you call you have a.
[27:50] No I do differentiate exclusive Brands versus private label and they don’t to them it’s all private label.
They do Break It Out by subcategories like fresh Frozen Frozen shelf-stable stuff like that the,
it was a big year for private label Target launched at the very beginning of the year a significant new brand that they expect good and gather they expect,
it to eventually be a 20 billion dollar your brand and it sold more than two billion dollars in the first year so,
those brands are selling really well like every digitally native brand we’ve ever talked about that gets all this Buzz not one of them has sold two billion dollars in a year so.
Yeah yeah absolutely but so I’m taking that one.
[28:39] Okay that’s fair enough so that puts you two and a half so within Striking Distance of me so hopefully your next to or total misses,
number four for you was installment payments heat up at least one company is acquired and you listed a firm after pay dalarna I like to say that one quad pay and sizzle.
[28:59] I made this prediction exclusively so you could say karna.
[29:03] Sizzle karna learn.
So this one was a win so a firm went public after pay is public know they did a spec what happened they expect it up.
Let me see I can’t remember after the note they went they did a public offering.
In Australia that’s why it was weird yeah I remember it was like kind of a little unusual it wasn’t listed in the u.s. so they did an IPO not you know,
if I were going to be nitpicky I would say neither of them was acquired which is your prediction but it did heat up,
it’s funny I’ve been meaning to send you some screenshots I was buying a couple things and literally four of these would be on the,
the checkout and it was really weird because they would have their almost competing at the checkout with like different offers so some of them would say,
two payments of 59 and no-one would say six payments of 4 and I was like sitting there like,
oh my God like his average consumer the calculus on this thing is kind of wacky of how to figure out which of these 12 offers is going to be best.
[30:13] Yeah yeah the cognitive load can get pretty high when they start NASCAR racing up the checkout with multiple buy now pay later options.
[30:20] Yeah and there’s some point it seems like it would hurt conversions because there’s like the what’s that thing about choice you guys talk about all the time.
[30:27] Yeah Paradox of choice is what you’re thinking of but yeah they’re just a lot more friction yeah.
[30:32] Once you got four of them you’re going to be like yeah I’m not gonna buy this thing so so that puts you over the top at three and a half right there.
[30:42] You can hear the music and In fairness I like if you were going to be a really strict greater I actually don’t think any of these got acquired like prove your point the,
partly because it heated up faster than I expected and their valuations are too high to get acquired now like for the most part,
The Firm did their IPO ass week and I think it went up 90% after the so they underpriced it.
[31:07] Yeah it’s now a bad IPO if you don’t more than double them first.
[31:11] We’ll have to do a whole show on that and then your last one I feel.
You know even though I’m losing I feel good for you because you’ve been talking about this for literally since the first day I met you you’re probably like the first day I met you or probably like,
let’s talk about Hugh are codes and how excited I am about him so this is like me claiming you know making my annual prediction that Amazon’s going to be with FedEx,
I know it’s going to happen it’s just whenever I’ve given up on it at this point so you predicting QR codes you get the persistent award you’ve been saying it for years
you know every time I go to one of the restaurants here in North Carolina that’s open I think of you because I have to scan a QR code to get my menu and then I do this cool little scan of a
another the little receipt to pay and
you know QR codes are definitely back you totally called this one the pandemic you got the pandemic assist so that was a solid one,
any other interesting use cases you’ve seen.
[32:14] Yeah no so pretty Point like obviously I did not foresee the covid use cases but all these contact us things you know certainly came up the thing we talked about just a second ago the bill me now pay me later pay later services,
have introduced a lot more QR codes because they you know they started out offering their service online and not in stores and then as they got bigger they all wanted in-store Solutions and those are mostly activated,
via an in-store QR code so like I want to say,
after pay you can now use it like CVS drugstore with the QR code,
um PayPal rolled out in store payments with a QR code and then of course thanks to covid,
Starbucks Mobile payment just completely exploded and so they’ve they say now that over 25% of all their sales are via QR code so,
so lots of different use cases and then a few stores are starting to roll them out on shelf Edge as well for product information so,
some some Walmart prototype stores and a few other stores letting you scan QR codes,
to get product information in the store the Nike House of Innovations.
[33:35] Well congratulations you cleaned my clock this year so 4.5 versus three so that was a 90% prediction rate very very impressive my friend.
[33:45] Even a broken clock is right twice a year or twice a day but yeah.
I ruined that one.
[33:54] That’s ironic.
[33:55] Yeah I will say I’m super grateful because I feel like you and I have both had this thing where we predicted something that didn’t happen and then we skipped a year and it happened.
Like oxa earbuds for example or something you know and so I.
[34:13] Yeah that was when I made for a while and then it finally happened the year I didn’t.
[34:16] Exactly exactly so I’m grateful that I didn’t miss the QR year.
[34:21] Well a blind squirrel finds a broken clock at least twice a year so as you as everyone knows.
[34:25] Yeah yeah I’m I’m clearly not the sharpest bulb in the drawer.
[34:29] Okay hopefully that flows into your predictions let’s see it’s you are the winner in the champion of 2020 what do you have in store for listeners for 2021 predictions.
[34:44] Yeah yeah well I’m excited about these for now we’ll see what happens a year from now,
but so prediction number one made-to-order apparel business achieves nine figures in Revenue so that’s a hundred million dollars if I did my math right,
um I’m super bullish on these on made-to-order taking a significant chunk out of the apparel business as people may know,
um Amazon launched made-to-order t-shirt M Taylor Nike a lot a lot of folks doing pilots and kind of,
dipping their toe asked year and so I’m going to go out on a limb and say at least one of these catches some scale and 2021.
[35:30] What are some examples of some of them these this does not have to be part of your prediction I’m not kneeling you down because specific but I want to make sure I understand.
[35:35] Yeah yeah so so Amazon made for me Product would be 1M Taylor in ticino Nike ID proper cloth.
[35:50] Doesn’t it Jesus have one week like print the souls or something.
[35:53] Yeah they’re so there’s a ton in Footwear that’s kind of cosmetic personalization so Vans Converse David us Adidas had custom sweater pilot,
there’s a small direct-to-consumer apparel brand called Ministry of Supply that has some interesting like,
in-store weaving machine so there’s,
there’s a number of things it’s mostly been a novelty up till now so I feel like this is a stretch prediction to get 200 million in Revenue.
[36:30] We will see in your shirt Nike ID already isn’t there.
[36:36] So that’s going to be a tricky one because to me.
[36:38] I’m wise to your sandbagging.
[36:39] They don’t break out the revenue for that so I like I doubt I’ll be able to use that one as a win.
[36:45] Okay alright I’m going to have to come back and listen to this if next year you use it as when all right.
[36:49] Yeah I can Bank on you not remembering it or not be willing not be willing to remember re-listen to the show.
[36:57] I just set a calendar appointment for for January 21 2022 so I’m on I’m headed.
[37:04] Yeah so prediction number to a retailer will offer a viable health insurance alternative to Consumers so,
the spirit of this retailers are totally leaning into Healthcare initiatives Amazon of course went all in with a pharmacy they offer some healthcare options for employees at this point so that could become,
consumer-facing Walmart has opened a handful of healthcare clinics Walgreens just announced a significant new division with 200 employees focused on delivering Healthcare so,
my I am predicting that one of these gets to scale and offers a viable Nationwide Healthcare alternative that does not require traditional insurance.
[37:57] Okay and so this is pretty brave given Amazon just and wound their their initiative with was it JP Morgan and yeah.
[38:05] But I am I’m banking on the fact that they Unwound that because they think they have a better solution on their own we’ll see.
[38:16] So then number three we talked about the grocery war is heating up last year and then of course thanks to covid a heated up a lot more than expected,
um so I think that the interesting one this year is I am predicting that they are going to stay at these very high levels,
our friend Sue charita from Forrester just wrote a grocery article yesterday and she talked about how it was a huge year for digital grocery but they in 2021 all the restaurants are going to open back up,
and that she expected digital grocery to shrink back down maybe not to pre-pandemic levels but to go down a lot,
um I actually don’t think that’s going to happen I think that a ton of people have formed a new digital grocery habit I’m not saying they’re going to do all their grocery shopping online,
but I think on a go-forward basis a big chunk of people are going to do a significant piece of their grocery shopping online and so I think,
um next year that for 2021 10% of all groceries will be sold online,
and I think as a result of that retailers are going to have to invest in operationalizing those those services and making them more profitable so I think it’s pretty likely that a,
a least one retailer will roll out these these micro fulfillment centers on a broader basis than just a pilot.
[39:43] Cool and specifically for grocery though because they are envisioning they would need to be refrigerated or.
[39:50] Yeah most of them are at least two climate zones many are three climate zones so frequently they have like ambient refrigerated and Frozen.
[39:59] Three climate zones nice is Rainforest in Ops.
[40:01] Yeah I don’t I don’t know if it’s an option it doesn’t seem like a practical option.
Maybe if you’re selling like fish or plants in your in your extra fulfillment center.
[40:14] Bananas you want to keep your bananas fresh up on the on the on the coconut trees.
[40:20] All right not sure that’s how that works but okay so the number four and this is why I’m glad I’m going first because I feared that I would be stealing a prediction from you,
There was a lot of Buzz last year that Jeff Bezos Scott was getting personally involved in a Shopify competitor.
And so so my prediction is that Amazon will watch a Shopify combat,
which doesn’t seem that bold given that it was it was
strongly rumored last year but my specific prediction is I think I have an idea of what it will be and I don’t think it’s what most people are expecting I think most people are.
Expecting them to launch some kind of web store that competes with Shopify,
and I think what Amazon is going to do to compete with Shopify is they’re going to open up their fulfillment Network to,
for for third for sellers to fulfill their orders from their own websites and on a limited basis Amazon has,
done this in the past and even does a little bit of this now but I think they’re really going to productize and make a lot more competitive,
and offering where you put your inventory in the Amazon with just X Network and when you collect orders on your own website Amazon will cost effectively deliver them using their own delivery Fleet.
[41:47] So they’ll make FBA kind of like more of a generic shipping solution kind of like almost like meaningless shit.
[41:54] Exactly exactly a standalone offer that doesn’t require the Amazon Marketplace exactly.
[41:59] Anderson all right.
[42:03] And then I have a.
[42:05] So no front-end SMB e-commerce thing is part of that.
[42:18] You’re keeping it generic so you can catch a lot of possible.
[42:22] Trying to keep it reasonable exactly.
The the so my V prediction goes back to a trend that you were talking about the the Amazon media and I do think Amazon media is going to continue to be the,
by far the biggest player of the Retailer’s but there’s a ton of,
effort going on behind other retailers to get in on that action as well so,
Walmart has you know launched a major media initiative the Walmart Media Group target has an initiative called Target Rundell Kroger has an initiative called Kroger Precision marketing,
and perhaps the fastest-growing of all these growing faster even than Amazon is,
instacart who is like one of the biggest beneficiaries of covid is now selling a ton of media so I think in aggregate all of these retailers selling ads are going to exceed 20 billion dollars in ad sales in.
[43:21] Brickell they’ll be an arson to do have a way of tracking that.
[43:25] We do not up perfect way but a number of the the stock analysts report on that emarketer has done,
estimates on them in the past and some pieces of it we have actual data for.
[43:44] Cool and then one of the things one of the behind the scenes things listeners may not know is we always do six predictions in case some of our Collide and I don’t think we had collisions can you want to reveal your six this kind of a bonus.
[43:58] Yeah you you correctly predicted that over 8,000 stores would close last year
and a lot of people feel like 20/20 was the peak covid year and they’re all these you know extra things,
I actually think 2021 is going to be worse for store closures than 2020 so I’m predicting that will have more this year than we did last year.
[44:21] So over a thousand seven hundred.
[44:24] What if 31 all right that’s a very specific prediction I like it.
[44:29] When I wrote it it wasn’t that specific but then you had.
[44:33] I’ll put it in the show notes.
[44:36] So so Scott what do you what do you what do you think’s going to happen this year.
[44:40] Yeah so you know this one’s tough because I definitely feel the pain this year I think,
I think I’ve had three or four years of pretty well walloping you so it felt really weird to not win this year so,
dug deep on these and hopefully I’ll reverse it for next year.
So number one it wouldn’t be a Jason Scott show without talking about Amazon a little bit more so I do have an Amazon predictions,
I do think that they are going to use so they used covid to really scale up this DSP program and as you and I have talked about ship again they were somewhat immune from ship again as they control their own destiny,
I think they’re going to really Flex on that and I think,
I think covid has the Silver Lining to Amazon of covid around shipping is I think it’s given them the path to get to same day Prime,
for you know a lot more places in a lot more skews so I think we’re going to see them really crank up one day shipping so that’s my prediction.
[45:43] Okay and where do you how do you envision that gets Quantified like what is cranked up mean like it gets used a lot more or they offer it a lot more places or.
[45:54] I think they’ll be an announcement now that I would imagine it’ll come and kind of Q3 where Amazon is going to announce for the holidays you know a.
Millions of items available for same-day delivery through the holiday period something like that I think it’ll be a pretty material.
[46:10] Okay I like it.
[46:11] Change and I think they’re going to execute it and then,
actually had written this down in there was an article that came out that talked about how they’re going to use these little micro DC’s there’s an article I think it was,
squarely in the speculation do you remember who is it that is this guy’s in Seattle that come out with the stuff but,
anyway they were speculating that Amazon is going to open up mm kind of micro DC’s so I don’t know about a specific number like that but it was interesting that I think I think a lot of people are seeing that this this could be the direction they go.
Number two I do think so my train of thought here is,
you know if your quote-unquote arming the rebels in your Shopify and and I was reluctant to make another Shopify protection but but here we go so then I did too so in this one I’m thinking if you’re arming the rebels you know what.
[47:05] With ship again what the rebels need the rebels being smaller kind of retailers they need a lot of help with shipping right so FedEx and UPS are not adding enough capacity they’re really expensive first while guys,
so then using USPS they were total epic fail during holiday 2020,
so and then Shopify is already kind of got one little toe in this water with their fulfillment by Shopify every what they call it that’s what I call it so,
you know if you’re them and you’re sitting on this massive hoard of cash and market cap and you want to help your,
300,000 if you get the number but this very large number of smaller businesses the,
imagine having Shopify trucks just kind of driving around you know I think that would be really interesting and,
it kind of ties with one of my other predictions but I think I think Amazon has proven to folks you can build last-mile fulfillment.
With a lot less than you would think I think a lot of folks looked and said well I’ll have to build FedEx that is you know fifty billion dollars,
but I think all in Amazon DSP program was was relatively like under four or five billion dollars from them to build out and.
[48:23] What they did is they essentially use kind of almost a franchise model where all these local entrepreneurs fair amount of the risk and do a fair amount of execution and then Amazon can,
work the incentives in the system so so I think what’s going to happen is Shopify we’ll look at that decode it and it makes a ton of sense for someone else to do it,
sometimes I bounce between maybe like a one of the ship Bob’s or some of those guys doing it but I just don’t think anyone else has the resources I don’t think Google would do it I just don’t think they would,
they would do this I don’t think Walmart would do it so I think someone’s going to do it in my best guess is it’s going to be Shopify.
[49:00] Interesting one bit of Commerce news I’ll throw in that maybe supports that is,
is listeners will know that the traditional carriers often have these um surge prices over holiday and now they’ve announced that they’re just going to keep the surge prices on.
So it’s just it’s getting it’s getting more expensive and it’s it’s you know challenges the unit economics for a lot of product category so having some Alternatives could be interesting.
[49:28] Yeah yeah and then my third prediction is also Shopify so so you know since that worked out so well for me last time,
and then here again if I’m arming the rebels and I keep saying that because that’s kind of like their little catch phrase now you know one of the things that’s risky for Shopify is,
I would bet that their stores in aggregate get sixty percent plus of their traffic from Facebook and social,
um Facebook and other social folks which are largely Facebook’s of the.
[50:07] The giant 800-pound gorilla here is there on Instagram,
you know they have their own check out they’re starting to promote and Shopify as an option and whatnot but at some point the,
you know so I mentioned this earlier these guys are under pressure the sad models under pressure from the privacy and the government and Amazon and everyone else,
they’re increasing their work on Marketplace and other Commerce initiatives and then at some point do they say,
we want a power that check out now and capture some comics from that because if you look at it Shopify almost,
you know a very large portion of shopify’s Revenue comes from monetizing the shopping cart,
so things like affirm things like PayPal things like their own payment system,
etcetera so someone is going to get greedy on that and Facebook has kind of a pole position so if your Shopify,
you need a hedge for that where you say if the amount of traffic going to our aggregate stores goes down we need to be able to drive them traffic and,
Shopify has been kind of creeping up on this this is where you kind of have disagreed.
They had this happen always forget what it used to be called it’s now called the shop app and it’s really just basically tracking your package and you know that kind of thing but that could become a front door so.
[51:29] I think Shopify will have some option where you will be able to either get free traffic or by traffic from some app that’s installed on millions of phones that has some kind of a front door shopping experience.
I don’t think it’s going to be like.
You know I think it’s going to be more at the store level not the item level so meaning you could say I’m looking for stores that have really cool,
dutch ovens and it will show you those kind of things but I don’t think you’ll be able to say you know,
Star Wars Mandalorian six inch figure and get a result across all the Shopify stores.
[52:05] Interesting all right.
[52:07] You need that make you throw up in your mouth.
[52:09] No like a lot of smart people think that that’s going to be a play like it.
And I’m not convinced it won’t be my point is just like everyone’s like oh my gosh shopify’s winning and all these things they’re clearly going to do that and my point is just.
Generating traffic and marketing yourselves to Consumers to get consumer eyeballs is a wildly different skill than anything shopify’s demonstrated so none of their previous success to me other than their access to Capital,
really makes them more likely to succeed in,
generating a lot of consumer traffic so I just think it’s it has some risk and then it has some complication,
um in some ways that that new service would compete with the rebels right so that’s you know always one of the,
the conflicts of having a Marketplace and fulfilling you know,
providing services to people that want to sell direct so,
we will see on that one I do like to point out everyone they keep liking use that metaphor of arming the rebels but if my Star Wars wars correct,
the rebels eventually took all those arms and they blew up an under-construction death star with like a million enslaved construction workers on it so I’m not sure that that’s always a good thing.
[53:32] Yeah yes it’s always a different perspective of who the rebels are right.
[53:37] Um and then okay so then my next one so this is number four this is code related and I keep reading these articles about you know here in 2021,
and you and I have had vastly different views of when covid-19,
you know but but you know what I’ve been reading is a lot of people are predicting that these new habits we form will go away and we’ll go kind of back to the old way of the old ways covid ways and I’m specifically saying you know,
we the digital adoption,
I’ve seen I’ve seen a lot of surveys that say people are gonna kind of have thirty percent of this kind of new digital lifestyle stick,
I think that’s actually the opposite I think 70% is going to stick,
and the reason why is I like this phrase zero friction addiction what once you’ve gotten used to this kind of digital lifestyle of stuff showing up at your house,
you know the digital Grocery and all the things that are going on,
it amplifies the friction of that experience in a weird way that messes with your mind that that is hard to explain to people,
and there’s some interesting studies about this but I think,
I think we’re going to stay at this elevated adoption rate of digital will come down some but I think it’s going to stay a lot hotter than people think it will.
[55:01] Yeah I certainly agree with the sentiment of that prediction I talked a lot about,
these behaviors being One Way doors and two-way doors there some of the things people walk through it’s easy for them to walk back through a tar and other things once you go through that door it’s kind of a,
permanent decision and I think a lot of these new behaviors are one-way door so I generally agree you’re going to this will be an interesting one with the judges next year because I’m not sure exactly how to quantify it but.
[55:31] Yeah let me say can we use percentage of sales that are retailgeek.
[55:37] Sure that our digital you mean okay what kind of percentage do are you expecting.
[55:44] Well the trick is that the were numbers not out so I don’t know where we landed last year.
[55:48] So we’re so,
we can’t January of twenty twenty thirteen percent of all retail so the broadest definition of retail straight from the US Commerce 13 percent penetration the peak of,
nineteen percent penetration in April and pretty consistently for the last four months of the year sixteen percent so we kind of jump from 13 to 16.
[56:16] I’ve seen a chart that shows.
[56:18] 34 yeah that’s that’s my friends and Mackenzie that smoked something and made a prediction that never came to fruition.
They did also they were defining a narrower definition of retail they were taking a bunch of things out of retail they said can’t it doesn’t include cars because people don’t buy cars online it doesn’t include food because people don’t buy food online,
and of course the both of those hypotheses are totally wrong and covid because people bought a lot of cars and food online.
[56:50] Yeah if this Mackenzie company had achieved digital research retail officer then they would not have missed that one so.
[56:58] Pretty confident Mackenzie has people with longer titles than me but yeah.
[57:02] Okay so I will take so all right so you think it’s settled down in Q3 you 16% so he said.
Yeah so I think it’s going to come off 30% off high so so I’ll say we stick it.
Well if I see 14 necessarily not more than January is.
[57:24] It’s one more than January.
[57:26] Yeah thanks I’ll say we stay at 16.
[57:29] Okay Bolt.
[57:31] Okay you’re right now alright prediction and were five,
this has been a nursing so there’s a lot of really weird things going in the financial markets we don’t have time to go into them but one of the ones that’s fascinating is I mentioned earlier IPOs are doubling,
um yeah so and then just this just recently we had Poshmark go public and do quite well,
so I think we’re going to see is,
you know and then there’s this weird thing there’s a space vehicle called a spec which is a special purpose acquisition company where you create this shell of a company it has a you raise Capital into it an optional capital and then you say,
this thing is a vehicle for going in and buying a company that will effectively go public,
so it’s this very kind of weird way to go public through a back door way it used to be very kids today would call its us which is short for suspicious,
now it’s become kind of a thing,
um so I think they’re going to chew through a lot of the companies like open door that are kind of unicorny and have a lot of Buzz and then I think it’s going to become it’s going to start looking for a new space and I think,
you know there’s a lot of Buzz around these DMV bees so I think some of these DMV bees will kind of go public through this mechanism,
um so some of them would be like keeps hims hers that the right one and then.
[58:54] There’s a bunch in kind of like that category there’s a bunch of beauty I could see glossy a they’ll probably go the traditional route.
[59:04] What’s like a tear to too glossy a Kylie’s are they adhere to.
[59:09] I don’t think they would call themselves tier 2 but there I mean there’s a million South Korean health and beauty.
[59:17] Yeah and maybe even like.
This could be an exit Vin one of the trends that I’ve been fascinated by but I did make this shot is this there’s these companies buying up,
kind of micro brands that are born on Amazon and aggregating them together and forming companies were actually have one on the show soon this could be an interesting exit vehicle for them,
so so I think we’re going to see a wave of that e-commerce in 2021 is my.
[59:44] Got it so someone buys up all the foam mattress companies and specs them up got it.
[59:48] Yeah yes pack them up.
[59:50] I like it is that gonna is there any reason that they would clamp down on this backs it feels like they’re they’re like super peeking is that an abuse in some way.
[1:00:01] You’re more government regulation guy that I am I’m sure they’ll think of some reason.
[1:00:09] Gotcha ya know but I mean it doesn’t like just when you sit to a Layman it sounds kind of sketchy right.
[1:00:16] It is a so it’s a way for for more risky companies to make it into the public markets now there’s a school of thought that says there is an investor that you know,
that wants more exposure of those things right because you know it would have been great.
[1:00:33] Products cavea.
[1:00:35] Give me a more wide range but then there’s another side of that argument that is you know these these poor kids are on Robin Hood and they saw a firm because they’ve seen it in a check out and they just put you know $500 in there and,
if you’re good because it doubled and if some of these.
Hot IPOs are specs you know if the crater then that’s going to be a problem there are several there are some so there’s one,
Nicola there’s some of the electric car category that have no revenue and just pure speculative and and Dave,
they flopped over that could create a wave of Regulation that says.
Kind of depends on why we these are going public are they are they going public because they’re sturdy and financially viable and vetted or is it,
that they have agreed that they will share their information publicly and it’s up to the investor to take decide what risk them.
[1:01:27] Got it okay and then I think that was five so do you have a bonus.
[1:01:31] I do I think you know I see a lot I watch a lot of CNBC and there’s a fair number of Talking Heads that kind of say,
you know once covid zof caught covid on covid off you know once covid off we’re going to see an explosion of people going out and buying new outfits and stuff like that and I don’t think that’s going to happen I think we’re going to see the,
the I think we’re going to see this kind of actual,
anti-consumerism materialism wave there’s been a little bit of that generational but I think it’s going to be bigger and I think it’s going to be people wanting you know part of its just going to be people spending money on doing stuff there’s so much pent-up demand go to,
concerts vacations Leisure stuff whatever whatever whatever that is,
but then I think there’s going to be this weird kind of,
you know anti-consumerism wave if you will and I think that’s going to really Advantage companies like the real real thread up,
a lot of those companies that are in kind of that would you call it second hand or Consignment I don’t know the right.
[1:02:33] Previously owned yeah.
[1:02:34] Previously on gently gently on so I think we’re going to see you know.
I don’t think we’re going to see people run out and buy yep six suits so this is,
conversely this is bad for the Macy’s the Nordstrom’s and those kind of folks I just don’t think there’s this huge pent-up demand to buy you know fancy cocktail dresses and stuff.
[1:02:59] Don’t know how to measure this one that’s why it’s in the bonus category.
[1:03:01] That totally totally fair I am it’s funny you like in briefings I do on covid I do talk a lot about a forthcoming,
Roaring 20s that is kind of a backlash too,
to the pandemic but I’m with you I think most of that is,
spending on services and experiences not Material Goods,
so that’s people like you know craving eat out more and go to more wive concerts and events and things like that,
then it is you know filling up their closets with clothes so I think you’re right there I for a variety of reasons,
the clothes thing is going to going to be,
not we’re not going to see a ton of growth in a parallel regardless except for the made-to-order that I predicted.
[1:03:57] And athleisure seems to be resilient.
[1:03:59] So that’ll be that’ll be good in,
I think we’ve concluded our predictions but I did get a note from the intern while you were sharing yours that you were exactly right our first prediction show was,
January 7th 2016 so this is our sixth sixth prediction show which is.
But more fun he sent me your 2016 predictions and one of them you used again this year.
[1:04:31] Really which one.
[1:04:32] So you’re six predictions 2016 will be the year chat Commerce know Amazon will make some big moves in logistics yes jet will get acquired yes,
um Google will make a bold move in e-commerce that surprises everyone.
[1:04:50] I didn’t even know it was a retread man.
[1:04:53] I like it and then Ali Baba singles day won’t work in the u.s. yes so you did really well for our inaugural show,
and the one that you might not have gone right I didn’t check with how we scored it the what you probably got four out of five and the one you didn’t get right you’re still you’re still Reviving for this year so I love.
[1:05:12] I’m persistent I’ve learned from your persistence on QR codes did you predict QR codes.
[1:05:23] Yeah well Scott it will surprise no one that is happen again and we have blown through our allotted time we thought this would be a shorter show because we didn’t have the the,
the year recap in it but we managed to stretch it out to an hour anyway but hopefully it was fun to listen to as much fun as it was for us to make and if you enjoyed it we it’ll of that five star review,
especially shout out to all us nerds who have listened to all six versions of the prediction show we’re certainly grateful for your,
your support and your continued Allegiance.
[1:06:00] Thanks everyone feel free to let us know your predictions on Twitter I’m Scot Wingo with one t Jason is retailgeek with
two e’s in geek and over on LinkedIn we have a page and then on Facebook we look forward to hearing what you think will happen in 2021.
[1:06:19] Until next time happy Commercing.
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