In almost all markets, online marketplaces are in charge. From ride sharing to food delivery to e-commerce. While these marketplaces are very good at matching offer and demand, this benefit comes at a cost: 1) A lot of data is being collected, both from suppliers and consumers. 2) The marketplace owns the customer experience, taking away the opportunity from retailers to build a sustainable relationship with their customers. 3) In e-commerce, retailers face the additional challenge that the platform is also a competitor, but with the advantage of more data and no commission fees.
We are proposing a decentralised solution that allows retailers to connect directly with customers through the vendor relationship manager-model (a.k.a. Me2B), allowing them to have more control over the customer experience.
Instead of customers connecting to individual retailers or a marketplace, VRM enables retailers to connect to the customer’s own environment. This enables customers to create their own marketplace (i.e. the customer becomes its own platform). With this model both retailers and customers gaine more control which opens up new possibilities for search and discovery.
In addition, we are focusing on a local first model, where local retailers are matched to local customers.
The following will be discussed:
- Proposal for a search experience within the customers own environment
- The challenges and possible solutions for this search experience
- Implications for business (benefits and challenges)
- Implications for customers (benefits and challenges)
We are challenging the audience with our view that there is an alternative to online marketplaces that is better for people and business and encourage them to think about the implication this has on search and discovery, both from a business and a technical perspective.