Digital technologies have already affected the purchasing behavior fundamentally. A highly complex ecosystem has changed how we interact with brands and buy products. The use of digital technologies affect every step of the traditional path-to-purchase: Explore, Search, Locate, Purchase and After Sales. The new path-to-purchase is much more dynamic and fragmented. At each stage, the consumer can decide anew how he behaves in his buying process. He can digitally interact within and outside the shop, switch between digital and physical channels and use a channel that is beyond the control of the retailer. He alternates between smartphone, tablet, computer and physical store to compare, annotate, and recommend to buy or do everything simultaneously. The digital transformation has transformed the path-to-purchase into a complex network of online and in-store interactions, which makes it more difficult to influence consumers in their purchasing decisions. In addition, the purchase process is integrated more deeply into everyday routines, through the ‘anytime-anyhwere’-possibilities of e-commerce the purchase does not have to be scheduled at specific times.
For companies it is key to gain back control at the point of decision. A product that follows this trend is the Amazon Dash, a combination of a digital recorder (with voice recognition) and barcode scanner. The Amazon Dash is directly linked (via WiFi) with the AmazonFresh account. The recorded voice or scanned items can be accessed via computer or smartphone as a shopping list, bought and assigned with a delivery date. This device tries to integrate in situations where grocery decisions are made, at the kitchen table. Other products from Amazon (like Amazon echo or the FireFly technology in the Amazon Fire Phone), show the possibilities that are offered to the consumer today. The technologies exist and will continue to evolve. More consumers will use it, if they determine how they can improve their daily lives.