Monthly Archives: January 2015

ASOS shows a positive growth record in fiscal 2014

Daniel Posted On - January 15, 2015

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Recently ASOS Plc, the renowned apparel retailer of U.K., as well as the 22nd position holder according to the Internet Retailer 2014 Europe 500, faced a challenging situation due to many reasons, though it had a good sales record in 2014.

Nick Robertson, the CEO of the company said, the factors played a prime role behind this were, a significant investment in the company’s warehousing, expanding business in China, the venture of strengthening the pound and top the fire at the Barnsley warehouse in the middle of the year. All these together negatively influenced the sales that resulted into decrease in the profit by 14%.

Robertson also mentioned that though they experienced a tough situation, the company always has a really strong customer engagement. Not only that, it also has a highest ever record in average order frequency, including conversion and average size of the basket. He also declared that the management is quite excited about their 8.8 million active customers, which indicates a notable increase by 25% when compared to last year’s facts and figures.

In the 2014 fiscal year, the company has a positive record in terms of E-Commerce sales as a whole, including U.K. online sales, international sales, average order and value added tax.

In the same year, the company also has a record of investing 15.1 million pounds in the field of technology. It initiated launching of Android and iOS mobile commerce apps in Australian and U.S. versions.

Furthermore, ASOS is now targeting to add localized apps in various other countries within a near future. The names surfacing on top happens to be France, Germany, Italy and Spain including Russia.

Not only that, in fiscal 2014 only, it has incorporated new checkout and order processing functions. This covers the continued process of re-plat forming the web sites, by which the company will be able to share the content and the product category pages across the globe. ASOS highlighted result of it which will obviously include a wider range of languages along with the devices too, with an expected greater response at international level. And most interestingly, within next two years company is also planning invest another 75 million pounds for further technological advancements and up-gradations.

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The man behind Google’s same-day delivery joined hands with Uber

Daniel Posted On - January 14, 2015

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Most interestingly Tom Fallows, the man behind the same day delivery service of Google Inc, has recently joined Uber. As we all know Uber is a well known organization that offers various types of cabs and vehicles including town cars and ride shares online.

Although the management of Uber did not say anything about Fallow’s joining it has been noted that after Fallow’s joining, they have taken a calculative move by entering e-commerce landscape. Now they have started offering a specific service for their customers.  It will make all the Uber users enjoy the benefit of ordering grocery items exceeding 100 items at a time via mobile apps.

Once the order is made the groceries are delivered to their mentioned destinies by an Uber driver. No doubt this is an innovative idea that has drawn attention of Amazon.com Inc. the giant retailer, including the postal service of the country and Google, the organization where Fallows worked earlier.

According to Fallow’s LinkedIn profile, in 2010 he joined Google in the capacity of product manager. He took the initiative of creating Google Trusted Stores. This was an extremely effective and popular system that provided important information to the consumers.

Through this system consumers could easily track the process which is followed by Google while rating different sites in different areas including details about returns and shipping times. It also declared rebates if the customer service could not fulfill the desired standard.

Not only that, Google Shopping Express was also introduced which is presently identified as Google Express, the same-day delivery service.  In March 2013, this service was first introduced by Google in the San Francisco Bay area and now it has become expanded to other cities like Chicago, Boston and Washington, D.C.

However, Fallows recalled how much he enjoyed working with team Google while helping them to form Google Express. He said initially it was a creative concept only which took the shape of a national level service with thousands of paying members and a huge number of merchant partners. Google also provided a statement where their former employee has wished them to see their prosperity reaching new heights.

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Retailers have become fast in tackling customer issues on Twitter

Daniel Posted On - January 12, 2015

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As Twitter has become one of the most popular social networks across the world, it is also playing a significant role in connection to retail sector.

As a result, quite often consumers take the advantage of twitting to express their experience about retailing including publishing complaints about various situations.  Most of the times, a large number of retailers treat these complaints on an urgent basis and respond at their earliest.

Internet Retailer has used their exclusive Conversational Index to track the rate of responses received in time and found 49% responses among the 50 e-retailers who came in the list of most mentioned names, occurred within a time period of just one hour after the customers twitted about their dissatisfaction. This figure is recorded during a fixed time span November 12 to November 17 of this year.

This exclusive Conversational index played a significant role in making a correct analysis about how the 100 renowned Retailers mentioned in the Top 500 Guide 2014 are reacting on customers complaints.

The study revealed that about 70% e-retailers coming within ‘the most mentioned’ category responded within two hours. Contradictory to this, in the month of June 2013, a similar study revealed that only 26% e-retailers responded that speedily while they tackled consumers issues.

Conversocial’s director of growth, Mike Schneider, has observed that all the response time has become really very fast. And all the e-retailers have become prompt in answering their customer’s questions and come up with quick solutions to every problem, as this has become the trend these days.

From this analysis it is also screened that there are few retailers who are not dealing with the complaints as quickly as others. These laziest retailers among the same list of 50 most-mentioned names are Gilt Groupe Inc. and Office Depot Inc., respectively. The first one holding 59th position usually takes 28 hours to reply, and the latter the 9th position holder takes 25 hours, on an average to reply.

Apart from this, there are three more e-retailers within this ‘most-mentioned’ list who strategically never answer back to such tweets. These retailers are L Brands Inc., Ralph Lauren and Media and Coach Inc respectively.

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Amazon is no more offering the cheapest price always!

Daniel Posted On - January 10, 2015

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It has been studied and analyzed by various price-monitoring services that Amazon no longer happens to be offering the lowest price these days. The primary factors that influence this trend actually lie in the root cause of implementing scientific evaluation of market analysis.

The top ranking retailer according to Internet Retailer Top 500, still considers price as one of the main consideration but at the same time they also want to take the advantage of more strategic dealing by which they can timely undercut the rivals or can win sales by selling their brand image, or on the basis of availability of stock and other additional facilities like free shipping etc.

However, this strategic change of Amazon’s pricing policy has influenced other retailers to a remarkable extent. In the current holiday season, it has been noticed that, many major Retailers are trying to match the Amazon.com Inc.’s prices. On the other hand there are various other web-only-retailers who are fighting to capture market in different ways instead of trying to compete on pricing offered by Amazon or other top class retailers. .

Recently, Ugam Solutions, a well known online price-monitoring service conducted a study on reputed as well as popular North American retailers and found in 2013, in terms of offering lowest price quotes, Amazon won on 37 out of 50 items. But this year the same figure has changed to be 23. But it is not indicating any set-back. It offers the best selection of various most-wanted products in various types and categories.

Although Amazon does not offer cheapest prices always they always get a longstanding belief of customers across the world that they have the best deals. Apart from this, this giant retailer is exceptionally competent in assessing market apart from mechanically analyzing data. Quite often, apart from pricing, consumers look for other criteria. In this regard, they highly rate and prefer Amazon for their efficiency at every level including timely delivery etc.

It is also assessed that Amazon is not competing that aggressively on price platform for some other reasons also. In certain product categories it has entered into the agreements with luxury brands, that it will go for restricting price competition regarding their products in order to encourage them sell on their website.

At this outset when there is so much discussion about it, Amazon did not make any comment about it. But L2’s McLean perhaps rightly assessed the situation by saying that whatever may be circumstances, Amazon still remains to be the biggest competitor on price, with an unbeatable lowest price online record on 95% of various cosmetics products sold through their website.

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The new iPhone Apple Pay is likely to influence the retail market.

Daniel Posted On - January 7, 2015

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Very recently Apple has introduced a new iPhone, called Apple Pay. The main advantage of this product is, it will provide a mobile payment platform which is has been already incorporated into the Apple Passbook mobile wallet. The company said, both Visa and MasterCard division of American Express along with card-issuing banks has backed it.

Apple Pay is using NFC, a wireless crucial enabling technology. Although it is not totally unknown as a payment mechanism, it is anticipated that this will take a long time to make it accepted in the retail market.     .

The general manager Pascal Caillon, of Proxama, a provider of proximity marketing, loyalty and contactless payment technologies, is quite hopeful about it and said this new enterprise will illuminate mobile payment market across the globe including U.S., though it is currently lagging behind.

Apart from Caillon, other analysts and experts also feel Apple Inc is the only organization which can make it possible when retailers and consumers will prefer this payment mechanism through the smartphones.

However there are some obvious points of hurdle which may initially prevent it to become popular and widespread in adoption at every level. Apple Pay needs to work, merchants buying point-of-sale terminals equipped with NFC, to work. This may create a bottle neck. This could possibly be an influencing factor which has not allowed it to be widely popular. So far NFC-related transactions accounts for only 2% among entire mobile transactions. It is observed by the research firm Gartner.

There was also a confusion regarding who will be accepting payments by Apple Pay. The company has cleared that doubt by making it transparent that all the big retailers that operate more than 220,000 stores across the United States will accept this mode of payment.

Another factor that will influence merchant adoption is closely related to consumer adoption. If a considerable number of consumers cannot use Apple Pay and get frustrated it will create a pressure on them and as they will not be ready to take a chance of loosing customers and automatically induce them to start accepting payment in this process.

 

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Amazon and eBay wisely targeted Thanksgiving deals to boost mobile shopping.

Daniel Posted On - January 2, 2015

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In this holiday season, Amazon and eBay both the retailers are targeting to provide consumers a more relaxed form of shopping which they can operate from their mobile devices. In fact these special deals will be exclusively for mobiles which will not be available on their websites. The reason behind this is nothing but to encourage the consumers more towards shopping via tablets and smartphones.

To make it more attractive Amazon decided that few special deals for smartphones and various mobile device users will be announced at the midnight of Thanksgiving Day only. This obviously influenced customers to shop from their smartphones instead of going to the retail shops on Black Friday.

No doubt this strategy will boost the sales through mobile devices more than the usual time. A study reveals many consumers this holiday season will first time enjoy shopping from the comfort of their home instead of going out.  And people in general will obviously be keen to scan their mobiles for various deals which will be a fun indeed!

As a result, this year mobile shopping reached a record point of 53% of total online sales on Thanksgiving Day. This fact was observed by International Business Machine Corp.’s Digital Analytics Benchmark, who has a past record of analyzing and monitoring holiday shopping trends since the year 2007. It has been also mentioned by them that this figure shows a 6.5% increase when compared with entire Thanksgiving Day browsing record in the year 2010.

As maximum mobile sales occur on Thanksgiving Day, it has become significantly important when judged from the point of online sales.  It is also anticipated that this year there will be more mobile sales which is likely to be up 13% of all sales and also a higher record than 12% of last year.

Amazon.com and eBay that is why has taken the initiative to capitalize this situation by planning to offer special deals only through mobiles which will not be displayed in their websites. Julie Law the spokeswoman of Amazon also put her focus on the announcements of special deals through mobile devices at midnight of Thanksgiving Day.

PayPal’s senior director of global initiatives in San Jose, California, Anuj Nayar is also extremely hopeful about it. He said, on Thanksgiving Day, last year, eBay’s PayPal electronic payments unit, experienced an increased sale of 90% compared to the past year. According to his belief, this time also it is expected to remain like that.

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