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03/19/2021

Digitally native tire retailer makes finding products a snap

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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SimpleTire customers can streamline their product selection process with a new visual search feature.

The Philadelphia-based online tire retailer is introducing SimpleSnap, an artificial intelligence (AI)-based visual search platform that enables shoppers to take a smartphone photo of their existing tire size (located on the sidewall). Customers then upload the photo to the SimpleTire site and immediately receive tire recommendations personalized for them, based on existing size.

SimpleTire developed its proprietary SimpleSnap tool in partnership with several technology companies. According to a survey commissioned by the retailer, only 20% of U.S. drivers are completely confident they know their car's precise tire size without looking and nearly half (46%) cite finding the right information as one of the top challenges when buying and replacing their tires.

A number of other online and omnichannel retailers have also released digital tools aimed at assisting drivers who may not be tire experts in finding and purchasing the correct tires. For example, TireAgent https://chainstoreage.com/no-credit-dont-know-about-tires-site-you will present multiple brands of tires compatible with a customer’s car that fall into premium, mid-priced and budget brands. Shoppers only need to know their car’s make, model and year

To validate the SimpleSnap tech and user experience, SimpleTire's technology and design personnel tested it with over 100 people who submitted over 1,000 photos. SimpleTire believes that integrating this new visual search technology will cause more people to adopt online tire buying.

"SimpleSnap is a technology that we are excited to bring to market because we believe it will help more consumers overcome the perceived barriers of shopping for tires online," said Andy Chalofsky, CEO, SimpleTire. "We recognize that buying tires isn't a process that brings many people joy. That's why we've made it our mission to innovate the way it's done by removing friction points, offering our transparent expertise and guiding customers towards the right tire choices for them through a more personalized and seamless experience."

The launch of SimpleSnap comes just a few months after SimpleTire took its first step towards simplifying the tire buying process with a reimagined user experience, website, and branding. In late 2020, the company enhanced their technology stack and made substantial front-end changes to their website to harness ecommerce technology to propel the tire e-retail industry.

Kenny Pratt, SimpleTire's chief technology officer, said, "We've spent the past few years laser-focused on creating a better online shopping experience for our customers that leans into our usage of tech and data. We believe launching technologies like SimpleSnap demonstrates our commitment to harnessing innovation to improve the tire buying process."