Built on the shared vision of Frenchmen Mathias Fliti and JT Rouzin, Woosmap is making the world just that little bit easier to navigate. Thanks to an innovative take on maps, a fierce interest in technology and a deep understanding of online retail, Fliti and Rouzin are pushing the boundaries of location technology by thinking about distance in a whole new way.
Following a family outing in the French Alps gone astray, JT’s boyhood ambition was to never be lost again. This vision gained momentum on meeting self-proclaimed mapping geek, Mathias Fliti.
Their project: the creation of unprecedented mapping and location solutions, by leveraging emerging Cloud technology.
Their project is Woosmap.
Five Questions for the Founders
What has been the most significant change in retail over recent years?
The most significant change has been the fusion between digital and offline commerce. Today, any merchant can reach any customer, anywhere in the world, no matter how big or small that merchant. This has generated great opportunities for all retailers, and a certain democratization of the market place. At the same time, competition has become fierce.
Retail has become “digital commerce” and there is a new challenge: How to compete in the Omnichannel marketplace, where prices and products are so similar; how to provide customers with the best buying experience. Woosmap helps companies provide the best buying experience to their end-customers thanks to a new approach to location.
What role does location play in improving the customer experience?
People were originally using online maps as “indicative pinpoints”, to find store locations. Today, consumers want to obtain their purchase faster than ever (think of Amazon’s 1-click to buy). The location factor must be optimized, accurate, in real time, and if possible personalized to the user - to reduce the number of clicks to get a location recommendation. Pushed to the extreme this can mean not even displaying a map: 0 clicks from the user to select the closest store.
What is your vision for the future of online retail maps?
Maps are here to stay. The next step will be location data combined with machine learning algorithms to predict locations. We will be able to guess where a customer is currently located to arrange the best personalized delivery scenario. Imagine a parcel containing the new shoes you bought online an hour ago being dropped into your car, while you’re waiting at the traffic lights.
What does it mean to be a Google Cloud privilege partner?
It’s a great experience. Working with Google makes us realize we are helping transform the world! We are pushing the solution further everyday with the support of the leading location industry team. This means being challenged and learning. As a Premier Partner we know they have confidence in the product. We work side-by-side to bring our customers maximum value and to understand their needs and vision more deeply. It’s a win-win team and we love doing business this way.
Can you tell us about winning the innovation prize earlier this year?
Google asked their main location partners to innovate to augment the Google Maps platform. Many of our customers had been urging us to create a solution to localise customers on their sites, but they were all facing the same problem: IP address location inaccuracy.
So we created an innovative solution, by thinking about location in new way. Our solution allows any eCommerce site to personalize the customer journey based on the users’ locations. We submitted this project to the 2016 Google Worldwide Location Innovation challenge, and we are proud to say we came out the winner. Since then we have been working hard on refining this technology. We are now ready to go to market and our first customers for this solution are raving about it and the benefits!