Data is not only the life blood of eCommerce but of the internet in general. We have all experienced social media sites appearing to read our minds, smart devices appearing to overhear our conversations and then we get targeted with related ads almost immediately.
The likes of the Facebook Pixel and various other web algorithms from tech companies are specifically built to gather data to build a user profile to help these companies target you with the things you like. Remember the famous saying regarding social media “If you can’t tell what the product is, you are the product”.
In an interesting turn Amazon have gone a step further and rather than rely on Algorithms and guesswork they are now offering their members cash in exchange for data. In this specific example the data was the birth date of their child.
Amazon Personalization & Recommendations
Personalization, recommendations, re-target marketing are all incredibly valuable tools which businesses can use to their advantage to try and stimulate a checkout or increase basket spend.
We saw this screenshot from the Amazon app originally shared by Mike Hann on Twitter.
As you can tell this is from the UK as the search bar references Amazon.co.uk and the offer is for £5 not $5.
Now whilst at first this might seem a little creepy or intrusive for Amazon to be asking parents for their child’s birth date, it actually makes a lot of sense to them as a business.
If Amazon knows when your child’s birthday is, and also the age of your child they can make some very clever recommendations to you for gift ideas, encourage you to setup wishlists, offer you targeted discounts and much more with the end game of you doing the majority of your birthday shopping on the Amazon marketplace.
How Much Is Your Data Worth To Amazon?
The truthful answer to this is we will never really know as Amazon keep their internal numbers to themselves.
The latest data we could find at the time of publishing this with regards to Amazon Prime numbers in the UK is a post from early 2019 which set the Amazon Prime numbers at 15 Million in the UK.
It is most likely that Amazon are going to offer this out in batches, but if we make a pretty safe bet that only a quarter of that 15 Million (definitely more now we are in 2021) are parents which brings an estimate to 3.75 Million. If they all took up this offer of a £5 discount then that would cost Amazon a staggering £18.75 Million for that one piece of data.
However you know, that if Amazon believed there would be a lifetime value to that data greater than the £5 per person, they would spend it without a second thought and we know they have the cash available to do it and not worry about it.
We are not sure if there is a similar program running in the US currently, but if you see it on the Amazon.com app please let us know.
Is this the start of a more blatant trade between companies and consumers trading data for monetary gain? Only time will tell but as always let us know what you think.
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