Consumers in the Greater New York City area searching for products online before buying in stores might want to know about a startup that lets them check product availability on the Web first.
The search engine Goodzer.com launched Wednesday with product information from more than 15,000 brick-and-mortar stores in the five boroughs of New York City: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. Consumers can go to the site to search for anything from smartphones to antique jewelry. Search results display product pricing, real-time in-stock status, and distance to the retailer through integration with Google Maps and Google Street View.
Goodzer.com cofounder and CEO Dmitry Pakhomkin says it took about two years to develop a theoretical base and an alpha prototype, and then another four months to prepare for launch.
For consumers to pull information into query results, retailers need only to maintain a trigger on their Web site that monitors inventory levels and indicates when product is in stock. Goodzer's script uses this to verify in-stock availability at the moment when a consumer submits a search request. Of course, if the store's Web site doesn't have the information to verify the available stock, Goodzer still provides users with the info that the product they want is sold in the store.
The technology gives retailers a way to tell in real-time when consumers search on product related information, allowing the store to serve up mobile coupons through an opt-in method. Pakhomkin says when a consumer submits a product search query, it allows the search engine to match related coupons or deals to the request and location, instantly serving up specials to consumers.
Expect to see an iPhone app soon, along with apps for Droid, iPad and other devices.