Come one, come all
Amazon.com is actively recruiting and making it easier for overseas merchants to sell on its U.S. marketplace, and that’s resulted in a flood of new competition for existing marketplace merchants. For example, more than 60% of Chinese online retailers say they sell on Amazon, and of that, 91% say they sell on Amazon’s U.S. marketplace, a recent survey found. Some new merchants are undercutting prices and engaging in suspect practices that some older merchants say is destroying sales and devaluing the marketplace. This story will look at Amazon’s marketplace practices, the heightened competition and how existing sellers are responding.
Topics: Showcase, Marketplaces
Survey: Digital marketing
The story is rooted in the results of the second annual Internet Retailer digital marketing survey, which examines how online retailers marketing budgets are changing, which channels are seeing increasing/decreasing investments, as well as how merchants are using digital marketing. The story draws on online retailer examples that illustrate how the digital marketing landscape is changing and where online retailers are spending their ad dollars.
Topics: Showcase, Marketing
This story, extracted from the newly published 2016 Global Leaders in Luxury E-Commerce Report, will highlight the brands and e-retailers who are driving sales of luxury goods online. It will also provide analysis on where the luxury e-retail is going and the headwinds luxury e-retailers are facing.
Topics: Luxury goods
Live connections and e-commerce
Video is the darling of the internet. Consumers spend roughly 1.25 hours a day watching it, and social media networks are adding new ways for individuals and brand marketers to incorporate it into their digital strategies. This story will look at how e-retailers are using video content—and in particular live video content—to connect with consumers online. The story will include examples from e-retailers, how they are developing live content programming, making sure consumers tune in, etc. How are they measuring the ROI of the investment?
Topics: Video content
What's next for Google?
Google keeps a steady rollout pace for search adjustments and advertising opportunities, and it can be tough to keep up. This story will look at the most recent search and advertising releases from Google that are applicable to e-retailers and provide a look at what’s ahead. They include brand-enhanced search results and Product Listing Ads, adjustments to display advertising and Google Nearby.
There is no such thing as free shipping
Paying for shipping is consumers’ least favorite part of shopping online, and about a third of consumers in a recent survey say they will abandon a purchase if they have to pay for delivery. Be that as it may, shipping isn’t free, and rates are going up. This story will look at what e-retailers and consumers alike are doing to minimize shipping costs, including adjusting carrier/service mix and increased use of buy online, pick up in store services (73% of consumers say they will pick up in store to avoid paying for shipping, according to a recent IR consumer survey). The story will include a YOY update on retail chains that offer free shipping to consumers who are willing to come to the store pick up orders, as well as a preview of rate increases for 2017 from the major shipping carriers.
Topics: Showcase, Fulfillment
Web performance: Mobile excellence
Online traffic has shifted to mobile devices—surpassing the 50% mark late last year—and despite generally slower load times for smartphones and a greater reliance on mobile carriers, consumers expect to be able to browse and shop as easily on smartphones as they do on their desktops. This presents a challenge for e-retailers. They must find ways to design and deliver their content quickly. Many e-retailers have incorporated responsive design techniques and applied a variety of tweaks to make sites render snappily. The special report and advertising section “Mobile excellence” will advise readers on the methods they can use to deliver a satisfying, reliable shopping experience on mobile. It will address design and performance, and highlight services retailers can implement that use native mobile capabilities, such as location.
Cloud technology has developed rapidly over the past decade so that today it offers retailers and other organizations, small or large, access to sophisticated software and hardware that few companies would be able to buy, develop and maintain on their own. A retailer can leverage cloud-based technology resources with little more effort than a consumer flipping a switch as she walks into a room. There’s massive investment and sophisticated technology behind that light switch, but the consumer doesn’t have to know a thing about electricity generation or transmission to turn on the lights in her living room. It’s almost that easy for retailers to access state-of-the-art systems through the cloud.
That’s a big change. In the early days of e-commerce, an online retailer would have to buy its own web servers, license or develop software to run on those servers, integrate that technology with outside firms such as email service providers, and employ qualified IT personnel to keep all that working. Today, an e-retailer can rent website hardware and software from a cloud provider and use that infrastructure to run software it licenses or builds, or applications that software companies host themselves and that the retailer accesses via a web connection—a subset of cloud-based technology known as software as a service, or SaaS.
The November 2016 Sponsored Special Report on cloud-based technology will look at types of cloud-delivered services and applications e-retailers are adopting—from cloud-delivered applications for e-commerce platforms, order management, warehouse management, marketing services and others—and how that is changing how they do business. Executives from leading cloud-based technology firms will share insights on application advancements and the new capabilities available to e-retailers.
Topics: The Cloud