Items tagged with e-commerce

The days are numbered for opportunistic thieves who swipe packages from people's doorsteps when they are away at work or otherwise not at home. In an expansion to its Amazon Key service, Amazon is now giving Prime members the option of having their items delivered to their car, so instead of leaving a box of goodies out in the open, the delivery person will instead shove it in the trunk of a compatible vehicle. Amazon is not charging anything extra for this service, it's yet another perk for Prime subscribers. There are caveats, however, one of which is that it's only available in 37 cities and surrounding areas across the United States. Amazon says it plans to add more cities over time, but... Read more...
In many ways Walmart is the offline version of Amazon, the one-stop shop for everyone from car parts and baby diapers to groceries and toothpaste. Now in an effort to significantly bolster its online presence and become Amazon's primary web competitor, Walmart has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Jet.com, a fast growing e-commerce portal, for $3 billion in cash plus another $300 million in Walmart shares to be paid over time, Walmart confirmed today. Walmart already conducts business online but not on the same scale as Amazon. The acquisition of Jet.com will build on and complement Walmart's online shopping foundation and spur faster e-commerce growth by expanding customer reach... Read more...
By the numbers, Amazon's second annual Prime Day was a smashing success. Compared to last year's Prime Day, customers this time around ordered 60 percent more good on a worldwide basis, and 50 percent more in the U.S. alone. It was the biggest single shopping day ever for Amazon devices, with every device category outselling what they'd done during Amazon's inaugural Prime Day last July, including Fire TV, Fire tablets, Kindle e-readers, and Alexa-enabled gadgets. "Prime itself is the best deal in the history of shopping, and Prime Day was created as a special benefit exclusively for our Prime members," said Greg Greeley, Vice President, Amazon Prime. "We want to thank our tens of millions of... Read more...
Nobody likes buying something only to find out that it's been marked down a few days later. Some stores, both online and brick-and-mortar, have price match policies in place that allow you to receive a refund for the difference when that happens. Amazon was one of them, but has quietly scrapped post-sale refunds on everything except televisions. The change in policy comes as startup services such as Earny that track online purchases and automatically request refunds on behalf of its users grow in popularity. There are a few mobile services that do this, including ones that don't necessarily automate the refund process but at the very least sends the user an alert. Amazon's updated policy is to... Read more...
Amazon said it recently hired 25,000 regular, full-time employees in advance of the holiday shopping season, which it anticipates to be another super busy one. So busy, in fact, that it's creating more than 100,000 seasonal positions across its U.S. network of fulfillment and sorting centers to ensure it can keep up with demand. The online shopping portal currently employs more than 90,000 full-time workers. They're spread out across more than 50 fulfillment centers and sortation facilities in the country. At any given time in the year, Amazon says some 90 percent of its associates in the U.S. are full-time workers, all of which receive benefits like healthcare, 401(k) with 50 percent match,... Read more...
One of the trends that's gaining steam in the online shopping space is same-day delivery service. By partnering with local stores and warehouses, web retailers can accept online orders and have the product shipped and delivered to the buyer on the same day, which partially takes away the instant gratification advantage that brick-and-mortar stores currently enjoy. However, eBay is going in a different direction, at least for now. Following its breakup with PayPal. eBay announced the retirement of its eBay Now service in the U.S., which had been around for the past three years. It's not a totally unexpected move, as eBay showed signs that it was losing interest, like shutting down its eBay Now... Read more...
Facebook is the most popular social playground on the planet, which is something we've been saying for quite some time now. The reason it's been able to avoid the same fate as Myspace is because it's constantly changing, adapting, and yes, even innovating. It's not just a social network anymore, but a place to play mobile games, keep abreast of current news, and soon it will be a place of commerce. As part of an plan to prioritize Pages on the site, Facebook has begun testing shops with integrated "buy" buttons. This isn't entirely new, as Facebook has already been testing buy buttons in ads, but now the social network wants to take things to the next level by offering... Read more...
In case you forgot to mark your calendar, today is Prime Day, a special one-day shopping event created by Amazon to celebrate its 20th anniversary. Amazon says there are more deals than Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year, though to participate you need to be a Prime member in the U.S., U.K., Spain, Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Canada, or Austria. "Prime members can shop thousands of exclusive lightning deals with new deals added as often as every ten minutes throughout the day. With more deals than Black Friday, members will enjoy thousands of deals from sought-after devices and tools to popular toys and pet supplies," Amazon says. If you're not a Prime member, you can start... Read more...
Black Friday is the busiest shopping day of the year, and while that's not likely to change, Amazon is going to give it a run for the money on Wednesday, July 15, the eve of its 20th anniversary. Dubbed "Prime Day," Amazon promises to offer more deals than Black Friday, though you have to be a Prime member in the U.S., U.K., Spain, Japan, Ital, Germany, France, Canada, or Austria to participate. The global shopping event is valid to both new and existing Prime members. Those who are signed up with Prime will see enticing deals kick off at midnight, with new deals appearing as often as every ten minutes. There will be thousands of "Lightning deals" plus seven popular Deals of the Day, all... Read more...
The next time you see someone taking a selfie, it may not be because they're getting ready to post their mug on Facebook or Instagram; they might be authorizing an online transaction. Say what now? Believe it or not, MasterCard is going to pilot a new program that will seek approval for online purchases by scanning images of a user's face.Once you've filled your virtual cart with whatever items you're buying and get to checkout, MasterCard will require you to hold your phone up and snap a photo of your face. MasterCard's thought process is that taking a selfie is easier than remembering a secure password. It also doesn't hurt that this generation is into taking selfies whenever possible, hence... Read more...
A potential trial between Royal Mail, the postal service company in the United Kingdom, and what's being described as a "big retailer" underscores why it's important to take online privacy seriously. Should the two sides move forward with the trial, online users living in the U.K. will receive market materials via snail mail based on their online shopping habits. Let's say a shopper named Joe visits this so-called big retailer and adds an item to his virtual shopping cart. If Joe doesn't complete the transaction for any reason, he would receive a physical letter or product pamphlet in the mail encouraging him to buy the item he was looking at. Call me crazy, but I can't see this going over very... Read more...
One of the challenges of online shopping is navigating a product's user reviews for fair assessments of its pros and cons. That's no easy task -- some people are habitual complainers who overstate the negatives, while others could be shills for a competitor. Still, some can be helpful, and to ensure those are the ones you see first, Amazon is going to use a machine learning platform to determine and uplift the better evaluations.This is a proprietary system that Amazon developed on its own. The idea is to prioritize newer and more helpful reviews so that they're the first ones you see and read when researching a product. In doing so, Amazon could potentially save shoppers lots of time by negating... Read more...
Tens of millions of members around the world enjoy Amazon's Prime membership service, though comparatively few have access to Prime Now, the online retailer's one-hour delivery program that's exclusive to Prime subscribers. Little by little Prime Now is expanding into new areas, the most recent of which include select ZIP codes in Miami and Baltimore. There are 10 ZIP codes in Miami and 25 in Baltimore that Prime Now is available immediately, and Amazon says it will expand service to additional ZIP codes within each city soon. Those who do have access to Prime Now can order in-stock items and have them delivered in one hour or less for $7.99, or for free if selecting two-hour delivery. Prime... Read more...
One of the reasons Amazon is so popular is because it's always innovating. The e-commerce site's latest venture is called Amazon Exclusives, a digital storefront filled with new products directly from up-and-coming brands. There are a number of Kickstarter items on the site already, though Amazon says it will also carry some of the products featured on Shark Tank, the show in which budding entrepreneurs seek investments for their inventions in exchange for a stake in their business. Amazon is being selective with the content it carries. It's looking for unique items, and many of the ones already displayed have won innovation awards from industry associations. The products you see can either only... Read more...