Alexa—meet DOM. That would Domino’s Pizza’s new personal assistant for placing voice orders. As the following article from Diginomica reports, Domino’s is piloting DOM in 20 of its U.S. stores.
As a parting shot from outgoing Domino’s Pizza CEO Patrick Doyle, it’s a statement that tells a powerful story of digital transformation in action:
“Fundamentally, we are on a path to take all orders digitally.”
Another big initiative underway is to take voice ordering to a new level. Customers can already use Amazon’s Alexa to place orders. The next step is extend this capability, says Doyle:
“Enabled by our investments in proprietary artificial intelligence, we are developing the ability to take all phone orders via DOM, our virtual assistant.”
Originally developed in 2014 as a voice recognition app, DOM is now being tested on the hones in 20 pilot stores in the U.S. It’s intended to deal with customers who still want to phone in their order in the ‘traditional’ manner, but freeing up in-store staff to focus on more important matters, like making pizzas! Doyle explains that this remains a key need to be fulfilled:
“If you figure today we are north of 60% on our digital orders and about 10% of our orders are walk-in orders -people just walking into the store and somebody takes the order there – and those can be handled with kiosks, so that’s how those are going to be digital. But you’re looking at, today, 25% or maybe slightly more that are still old-fashioned phone orders. And think maybe three minutes average on the phone for somebody to take a phone order.”
Will retailers develop their own voice assistants to rival Alexa and Siri? Good question, perhaps, but we think that is unlikely. Amazon already has merchant partnerships for ordering with Alexa and while Apple is trying to play catch-up with Siri’s skill set, the established conversational commerce platforms will dominate. But some merchants will go for a home-grown version, and it’s no surprise that Domino’s is in the forefront as it is really a technology company first and pizza shop second.
Overview by Raymond Pucci, Associate Director, Research Services at Mercator Advisory Group