Retail giant Walmart is traditionally an in-store business, but is lookingt to improve its web presence through the acquisition predictive analytics company Inkiru.
Know Your Customer, Increase Business
Analytics have proven to be an important tool in the digital marketer's toolbox. This is something that Walmart aims to capitalize on by incorporating Inkiru into Walmart Labs, its social e-commerce department.
As a predictive analytics platform, Inkiru helps businesses understand customers by sifting through large amounts of data so that these companies make better and more educated predictions on future behaviors and launch more successful campaigns and develop a better ROI.
By incorporating Inkiru and its technology, Walmart will be able to “further accelerate the big data capabilities that Walmart Labs has propelled forward at scale” and improve the company's e-commerce efforts. This will be done by incorporating some of Inkiru’s solutions, such has site personalization, search, campaign optimization and fraud prevention and through working with some of Inkiru's former employees, such as Yitao Yao, a software architect and Inkiru’s founder Alok Bhanot, who will serve as a consultant.
While specifics of the acquisition, such as financial details and what will happen to the Inkiru platform haven't been released, there is speculation that the individual Inkiru product will be discontinued in the coming months.
Narrowing the Gap Between Walmart and Amazon
As e-commerce continues to make an impact in the retail and shopping world, more and more traditional retailers like Walmart have had to revamp commerce strategy so that it is digital and web-based, as online-only retailers have drawn away customers with the luxury of shopping at home.
Walmart Labs has been speeding along building best-in-class e-commerce technologies that combine with the assets of the world’s biggest retailer to deliver a unique customer experience," said the company statement. "And, we’re finding great opportunities to go even faster by bringing in new teams and technology."
According to Derrick Harris, one such company that is in competition with Walmart is Amazon, but with acquisitions that not only include Inkiru, but social media company Kosmix and cloud computing start-up OneOps, Walmart could build upon its strong position in the retail world into a formidable opponent for Amazon.
All of these new capabilities around social, behavioral and mobile data are likely critical to Walmart as it attempts to keep relevant against Amazon and other e-commerce companies that have digital data in their DNA," he wrote.