Target and Toys R Us posted overall sales declines during the holidays.
More than 600 firms will exhibit their wares and services at the show next week in Chicago.
The Internet Retailer 2014 Conference & Exhibition is various things: A multi-day e-commerce educational course, a networking mecca for anyone associated with the selling of goods online, an ongoing cocktail party that can make those weekday mornings a bit drowsier than usual.
IRCE, which takes place in Chicago next week, also serves as a coming-out party for products from the 618 companies that have booked space in the McCormick Place West exhibition center. While an exhaustive list of new product announcements would hardly be readable—and that’s what the exhibition floor is for—what follows are brief previews of a handful of planned vendor releases at the show.
(The July issue of Internet Retailer magazine will feature a survey about e-commerce technology trends. Please click to take part in the short survey.)
• E-commerce technology and services provider Shopatron plans to debut a free, web-hosted inventory lookup tool. “The tool will give retailers actionable analytics to improve in-store operations, stocking, merchandising and product marketing,” Shopatron says. For more about how Shopatron helps store retailers handle online orders, read this story from earlier this year.
• Product packing vendor Sealed Air Corp. plans to show what it calls “a new automated packaging system designed to drive improved efficiency and product protection for e-retailers.”
• Shipping technology firm Endicia will release a new product returns service that, according to a spokeswoman, “will save e-retailers time and money while vastly improving the e-commerce returns experience for their customers.” Learn more about making returns more efficient by clicking here.
• INetU, a web-hosted software company, will debut at the show its “PCI Compliance Dashboard.” PCI refers to the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards—a set of rules created by payment card networks for securing consumer payment account data. Payment security has moved up on the list of e-retail priorities in the wake of several recent data breaches, notably the one suffered by Target Corp. last year.
The 250,000-square-foot IRCE exhibit hall opens on Tuesday at 4 p.m. and closes at 7 p.m. that night. On Wednesday, hours run from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Thursday hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.