Breakfast with ShopLocal

Picture 19I just had a great breakfast with Vikram Sharma, CEO of ShopLocal. He took me through a deck that reflects all the stuff that they’re doing with retailers. They’ve got their fingers in almost every area of the digital pie now: search, display, mobile, social media.

The company has largely migrated from a shopping destination that also manages retailers’ digital data to a marketing platform or vehicle for retailers and mediator between them and the rest of the digital universe. Apparently they’re doing extremely well.

We spoke about the ongoing challenge of measuring the online to offline conversion and about coupons and other tools (e.g., online tied to loyalty cards, mobile) that help bridge that gap.

We also spoke about the fact that many retailers are seeing their print ROI go down but don’t yet have coherent strategies for digital. It’s amazing that at this point in the Internet’s history there are still major retailers that haven’t fully embraced it yet.

The challenge of attribution and of tracking will remain a persistent problem in local because there’s no single analytics tool or solution that works every time on a campaign basis to reveal efficacy. Regardless, consumers are doing the “ROBO” thing and everyone understands that. Eventually marketers will be compelled to fully embrace that proposition and spend accordingly.

2 Responses to “Breakfast with ShopLocal”

  1. Dan Entin Says:

    It used to be more clear to me the difference between ShopLocal (web-enabling retailer circulars) and Krillion (syndication of local product prices & availability). But it seems that ShopLocal is becoming more similar to Krillion. Would you say that’s true?

  2. Greg Sterling Says:

    ShopLocal is less and less a destination. But it’s equally not doing real-time inventory; it’s pushing out the sales and circular information to more points and more ways around the web. So . . . a marketing partner/enabling technology provider.

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