"If the theme of the 2000’s was “mass data capture”, 2017 and beyond will be “data driven design". Today, publicly traded companies radically redirect their vision based on inferences made from user data, and startups define their products, strategies and business plans based on publicly available datasets.
One of the industries most affected by the data revolution has been retail. Before this era, retailers had a unidirectional relationship with their customers. They identified new items that “would sell” and presented them to their customer through a crafted experience. Before data, this was almost entirely subjective. Data collation now enables a bidirectional relationship between retailers and their customers, yielding empirical metrics to corroborate subjective vision. We see obvious examples of this with Amazon, which uses a supervised machine learning algorithm (SMLA) platform to make recommendations. But it’s also in places you wouldn’t expect, like a Nordstrom department store, which uses customer smartphones to track behavior and shopping habits.
Ignoring data can have dramatic results. Data science, data design, and data strategy each serve as a necessary tool for product creation. They enable a dynamic relationship between designers and users, and a personalized, adaptive experience. Data driven design will fundamentally change the retail experience and the design of the products, catapulting companies to rich insights and sustainable growth."