Our next batch of invitations will be released December 1, 2020. Learn more here.



We were studying how and why people shop online long before the emergence of the pandemic in 2020. In doing so, we’ve seen how the biggest players have grown to be so dominant while some more traditional market leaders have faltered or failed outright. Those shifts have transformed retail in a way we’ve not seen in our lifetimes and has created immense opportunities for those who are nimble and able to capitalize on this new reality.

In the beginning at NEAR, we started off with the assumption that the reasons consumers chose e-commerce over brick-and-mortar stores were well-understood by the industry, but as we’ve studied that behaviour and spoken with leaders at traditional retailers we’ve learned that’s not at all the case. 

Retail science evolved slowly over the past century, but chains like Walmart began studying consumer behaviour in greater depth in the 1980s and 1990s. This was an important element that drove their explosive growth in that same period and these principles ended up being widely adopted by big box stores throughout the western world. 

Another shift is now well-underway in commerce and this time it’s playing out far faster and with greater effect in e-commerce. Though Walmart is a player this time, Amazon is leading the way. With their tens of millions of daily visitors they can test and sample outcomes at a rate that far exceeds the experiments run by Walmart a few decades ago. This movement is driven in equal parts by psychology and data as they analyze how their shoppers interact with the Amazon marketplace and make purchasing decisions. 

All these finding and data are out of reach for other retailers, particularly brick and mortar operators without the resources and margins of an e-commerce giant. Even most of the largest retail chains have failed to achieve e-commerce performance that begins to parallel Amazon. Their conversion rates are often 2 or 3 entire orders of magnitude lower.

Our expertise is helping retailers large and small leverage the same tools and theories used by the e-commerce giants to achieve similar conversion rates. We study shoppers before they ever get to your stores and websites so you can have a more complete understanding of their behaviours and decision-making. To make you more successful in addressing your market we examine the tools used by your most successful competitors – how they draw traffic and how they use buying signals to convert browsers to buyers. 

At NEAR we share your goals and we believe you can reach them. Your success is critical to ours so we take every step we can help you maximize your marketing spend. Let us help you focus on making changes that bring results. 

Contact us today to learn how we can use our expertise to improve outcomes for your company.