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Retailers to Consumers: Let's Get 'Phygital'
August 20, 2020
The pandemic has exposed one fundamental, seemingly contradictory reality: people like to shop online, but they also crave in-person experiences. This era has also made clear that there's an answer to this conundrum: to provide shopping experiences that combine both physical and digital elements. Also known as "phygital" experiences, these strive to give customers the best of both the online and in-person worlds.
Health and Fitness App Exercises AI for Competitive Advantage
August 20, 2020
In-person workout sessions these days might seem like a thing of the past, while solitary workouts at home replace gym visits as an ongoing result of the pandemic. The use of artificial intelligence is not yet a common feature in fitness apps, but it is a main component in a popular India-based app now focused on growing users in the U.S. and Canada.
Amazon Eyeing Mall Anchor Stores as Fulfillment Centers
August 19, 2020
Amazon is huddling with the largest mall owner in the United States to turn anchor stores into fulfillment centers, and possibly retail outlets. The deal with Simons Property Group would give Amazon access to space formerly occupied by Sears and J.C. Penney, both of which have filed for bankruptcy.
Consumers Expect More From Brands to Earn Loyalty
August 18, 2020
Customer loyalty has increased drastically in the last five years, though it has not reached boom status for many brands. Winning repeat business is increasingly difficult, especially with the economic uncertainty brought on by COVID-19. New studies reveal how solidly personalization in marketing drives brand loyalty, however consumers still feel that brands fail to do enough to recognize them as individuals.
More Consumers Buying Into Digital Payments
August 17, 2020
As consumers get more acquainted with shopping and banking digitally, it seems logical that more people would be inclined to pay their bills online. A recent survey of more than 3,000 adult consumers shows that nearly 70 percent prefer digital payment options, such as website and mobile app channels, to pay their one-time bills.
In-Store Commerce Kicked to the Curb
August 13, 2020
Curbside service is one of the more popular strategies that businesses and consumers now use to navigate the 'new normal'. Ideally, it's a contactless, convenient experience for all involved. For curbside pickup to be successful, however, it needs to be as quick and easy as possible for consumers -- and a large part of that ease of use requires adequate business planning and management.
Website Development Contracts, Part 6: Lawsuit or Arbitration?
August 12, 2020
Like it or not, disputes do arise from time to time. So it's always a good idea to plan for the worst and hope for the best. A website development contract should identify how the parties will handle disputes. Nowadays, contractual disputes can be handled in a variety of ways, in more than one forum. The most obvious forum, of course, is the courthouse.
Automated CX Strategies to Revitalize Customer Relations
August 11, 2020
If the ongoing struggles amid the pandemic have taught retailers anything, it is the need to automate their customer service experience. Customer experience automation is making the difference between hanging on until closing down and ensuring more returning customers.
Oracle Marketing
August 10, 2020
The emergency caused by the novel coronavirus is causing deep structural changes to how we do business. We don't sell or market the way we did before the virus, and it may be some time before we return to that model -- if indeed we ever do. Oracle's strategy centers around the CX Unity Customer Intelligence Platform, a data management platform that's central to marketers' activities.
Latest Shopping Trends Emphasize Need for Retail Marketing Foresight
August 4, 2020
Several recently-published reports and surveys tracking changes in consumer buying habits reveal a growing competition between old versus new shopping habits. The E-Commerce Times discussed the implications of these new consumer buying trends with marketing experts. The results show that e-commerce is overwhelmingly becoming the first choice for many consumers. However, some consumers are beginning to show renewed interest in returning to their previous shopping norms.
10 Types of Social Proof and What Makes Them Effective
August 3, 2020
Social proof is an individual influencer or group clout that gives "proof" to a product. It is based on the principle that people tend to follow and conform to an influential person or a majority. They do this to be validated -- a result of a need for safety. Here are 10 kinds of social proof strategies -- and how and why they work.
Congress vs. Big Tech: Breaking Up Is Hard (and Stupid) to Do
August 3, 2020
Like a lot of you, last week I watched the congressional testimony from the CEOs of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google -- and there were a lot of apparent things that were problematic. One is that there are folks in Congress that likely shouldn't be in Congress, and another is that each company has some serious issues they haven't dealt with.
Google's E-Commerce Push to Fill the 'Messy Middle'
July 31, 2020
Google's domination of the online ad market appears to have stalled since Amazon last year became the third-largest digital ad platform in the U.S. behind the Google-Facebook duopoly. This may have driven Google to accelerate its push into e-commerce, focusing on what it calls the "messy middle" -- the space in the customer journey between what triggers the purchase and the actual purchase itself.
Website Development Contracts, Part 5: Mediating Disputes
July 28, 2020
Contract disputes do arise from time to time. Whether the issue is early termination, delay of deliverables, breach of performance, or the like, it is best to plan for the worst and hope for the best. When there is a dispute, whether the contract contemplates this or not, either party should consider a legal process called mediation to avoid the time and cost of fighting in court or in arbitration.
Victory Gardens 2.0: Gardening in the Pandemic Era
July 27, 2020
The pandemic era has seen a resurgence of interest in growing, tending, and harvesting fruits and vegetables from one's own patch of land or city balcony. Home gardening offers a sense of security and independence. Even when the world has been upended, a home garden can provide a bit of food insurance. Many people are finding that gardening offers a way to take control of a situation that can sometimes feel chaotic and unpredictable.
Panic Buying Sparks New E-Tail Strategies
July 23, 2020
Panic buying and competition for consumer attention between in-store and online transactions have created a brave new world of retail that is bound to continue into a post-pandemic reality. The E-Commerce Times reached out to several firms that guide brands on how to prepare for, and adapt to, changes in consumer behavior and product demand -- and what this means for the future of retail.
Salesforce Ups Its Marketing Game
July 21, 2020
Recent research shows that employees are well aligned with the directions and goals of their companies, and that they are competently led and respect their bosses; but the technologies they use leave a lot to be desired. This includes CRM, and too often the functionality that their currently installed CRM doesn't offer. Consequently, the changes Salesforce just introduced in its Marketing Cloud could not have been more timely.
Refocus Your Sales Strategy on the Phone Call
July 20, 2020
Getting a prospect on the line and talking to them directly matters. It's the ability to deliver the pitch with the right content, cadence, and care for your future clients' needs that makes a voice call so effective. It's not just salespeople who prefer a call -- 92 percent of all customer interactions happen over the phone. Simply put, that direct human connection creates the right environment to establish trust.
Fitness Products Shatter Online Sales Records During Lockdown
July 20, 2020
As traditional gyms, fitness centers, and health and wellness studios shutter during COVID-19, technology has kicked in to provide a replacement or an alternative for growing numbers of online shoppers. Digital at-home exercise sessions and sales of home exercise and health equipment purchased online are fueling new consumer trends that could permanently supplant old shopping routines.
New E-Commerce Partnership Gives U.S. Merchants Access to LATAM
July 16, 2020
ShipStation on Wednesday announced a partnership with Mercado Libre, which is known as the "Amazon of Latin America" and has operations in 18 countries throughout the region. Mercado Libre is the fourth largest marketplace in the world in terms of visits per month, and the largest in Latin America. Its top markets are Brazil, Argentina, and Mexico.
How to Win at E-Commerce on the New Walmart.com
July 16, 2020
Walmart is embracing new strategies, partnerships, and infrastructure that have modernized its e-commerce platform and made it a more formidable rival to Amazon. In particular, three big factors are at play: enhanced content opportunities, the introduction of new fulfillment capabilities, and the introduction of self-service marketing tools.
Google Clamps Down on Ads for Spyware, Stalkerware
July 14, 2020
Advertising for software and hardware designed to stalk and spy on people will soon be banned on Google. Promotion of products or services that are marketed or targeted with the express purpose of tracking or monitoring another person or their activities without their authorization will be prohibited on the platform starting Aug. 11.
The Art of Sewing's Hi-Tech Revival
July 14, 2020
During the pandemic, increasing numbers of people have pulled out their sewing machines and knitting needles and gotten to work. A massive resurgence in sewing and crafts has taken place, as makers around the world have been sewing masks and creating other much-needed items for themselves and others.
Improving Company Performance
July 13, 2020
A recent study found that businesses across North America are led well and staffed with people who are engaged in what they're doing. But technology is barely adequate -- and because of this, managers should devote their attention to improving systems whenever they think about how to improve overall company performance.
Website Development Contracts, Part 4: Indemnification
July 13, 2020
A well-drafted indemnity clause can protect you in litigation ensuing from your violation of a website development contract which results in third-party claims against you and/or your vendor. Whether it is your vendor or a third party that initiates the lawsuit, you will want to know where the proverbial "buck" stops when the legal bills start to roll in.
Digital Fraud Flourishing During Pandemic: Report
July 9, 2020
If you conducted e-commerce transactions since the pandemic struck, you have probably been the target, or even a victim, of online fraud. A report from Sift titled "Q2 2020 Digital Trust & Safety Index" details a 109 percent increase in content abuse and growth of the fraud economy from January through May 2020.
Building Supply Chain Resilience During a Global Disruption
July 8, 2020
As a result of the severe business disruptions brought about in recent months by the pandemic, many businesses have been reconsidering how to retool their supply chain to build in more resiliency. From digitizing the supply chain to developing more local and regional components, businesses are finding new and innovative ways to strengthen their capacity to keep moving forward during crisis.
Uber Eats Postmates for $2.6B, Bolsters Ground Game
July 7, 2020
Uber is looking to food delivery for rescue from falling revenues caused by people staying at home because of the pandemic. Gross bookings for Uber Rides have decreased by three percent year over year, the company noted in its Q1 2020 financial report. On July 6, Uber announced that it's acquiring on-demand food delivery service PostMates for $2.65 billion. The deal is expected to close in Q1 2021.
Prime Day Uncertainty a Dilemma for Amazon Sellers
July 2, 2020
One of the e-tail world's most pressing questions is: When will Amazon have its Prime Day sale this year? Perhaps a better question is: Will Prime Day happen at all? Amazon so far is not telling. If Prime Day 2020 takes place in the fall, the biggest deal days of the e-commerce industry could happen within several weeks of each other.
The Trail to the Platform
July 1, 2020
Some years ago, Marc Benioff told me he was not interested in developing back office apps that would compete with SAP and Oracle in the ERP and finance market. Many people, myself included, looked askance at that idea and wondered out loud how the company would continue to grow because, hey, there's front office and back office and nothing else right? Nope.
See More Articles in E-Commerce Section >>
Three top analysts have picked NICE inContact as the market leader.
How will the pandemic influence your holiday shopping habits this year?
I will shop online exclusively, for my own safety and to help limit the spread of the coronavirus.
I will do some shopping online, and some in-person because I want to support merchants in my area.
I will shop online definitely, and I will consider local retailers -- but only if they provide curbside service.
I will only shop in-person because the risks associated with e-commerce outweigh my chance of catching COVID-19.
I will not do any holiday shopping this year due to circumstances related to the pandemic.
Digital River - Sell Like a Local
Three top analysts have picked NICE inContact as the market leader.
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