October 29th, 2012
Founder Nick Swinmurn of Zappos started out with this hypothesis:
“Customers are ready and willing to buy shoes online.”
To test the hypothesis, this is what he did:
- Go into local shoe stores.
- Ask: “Is it OK if I take pictures of your inventory of shoes and post them online?”
- Make this promise: “If a customer buys a pair online, I will come back to the store and buy the shoes full price.”
The question he wanted to test for was: Is there already sufficient demand for a superior online shopping experience for shoes?
The answer he got from people buying the shoes he posted pictures of was: Yes
After that. He started setting up a team, buying inventory, finding investors and technology. All that stuff that some other people start doing before they know what the customers really need.
I will be running an experiment soon. Keep your eyes and ears open.
Questions for you:
- Could you make an experiment?
- About what?
- Or could somebody you know make an experiment?
I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.