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Online Retail Articles

Amazon Launches Same-Day Delivery Option

Amazon, one of the biggest names in online retail, is preparing for a big holiday season. The company announced today that it is adding a new shipping option for customers, called "Local Express Delivery." What this equates to is same-day delivery.

Twitter as the New Ouija Board
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Online retailer FancyDress.com is hosting what it claims is "the world’s first interactive Twitter Séance or "Twéance" on October 30th – the day before Halloween.

The Twéance allows participants to nominate the names of their favorite "departed stars" along with a question they would like them to be asked by "renowned psychic medium Jayne Wallace." Participants are asked to simply tweet this to @tweance.

Amazon Introduces Mobile Payment Service

Amazon.com has launched Amazon Mobile Payments Service (MPS) which provides developers, merchants and distributors of mobile applications a way to process payments from mobile devices.

Amazon Mobile Payments

Amazon MPS allows customers to use their current payment and shipping information from their accounts to make purchases from their mobile device.

Good Chunk of Holiday Spending Will Be Online

Nielsen has shared some findings from research involving how American consumers intend to spend their money during the upcoming holiday season. About 42% expect to spend less.

Google Splits Up Google Base
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Google has split Google Base into two separate entities – Google Base and the new Google Merchant Center. The Merchant Center will replace Google Base for users who submit product-type items to Google.

Bonanzle Standing Out Among eBay Competitors
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Bonanzle has been around for a year now (out of beta). We’ve been watching it grow for the better part of this year at least. 

Coupon Site Reports Big Growth for Online Sales
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Ebates, a site that many big-name brands offer rebates and coupons through, released its online retail report for August, finding that online sales through the site grew 57% during the month, compared to the same time period a year ago.

The categories that showed the biggest growth were: department stores, baby % kids, books & magazines, apparel & shoes, and health & beauty. In fact, only one category covered by Ebates showed decline – home décor.

Google Adds Store Locator Feature to Product Search

Google has launched a feature in Google Product Search for users to find merchants who have store locations. This means that people searching with Google Product Search will be able to get more information about the nearest store locations for a particular merchant.

Walmart Brings Other Retailers on Board for Online Sales

Over the years, Walmart has been widely criticized in some circles for essentially stamping out small businesses across America with its ever-expanding presence. There have even been documentaries made about this. But that’s about the offline world right?

Walmart has now introduced "The Walmart Marketplace," a new online initiative, in which it bolsters its inventory by partnering with other online retailers with large inventories themselves.

Poor Customer Service Holding Back E-Commerce Sales
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Earlier this month comScore released its Q2 retail e-commerce sales estimates, which indicated that US online retail spending dropped from the same period from last year. This is only the second time that has happened.

Latest eBay Changes Go Over Better With Sellers
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eBay upset a lot of its sellers over the last year and a half or so with various announcements and policy changes. Evidence of this is all over the web on message boards, blog comments, and social networks.

Google Welcomes NetSuite as a Checkout Partner

Google announced today that NetSuite is now a featured partner of Google Checkout. This means that NetSuite users can now offer Google Checkout as one of their payment options.

Online Retailers Seek To Improve The Checkout Process
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The majority of online retailers (79%) say improving the checkout process is one of their top priorities for the remainder of the year, according to a new Forrester Research report.

Hitwise: Most Twitter Users Move On To Media Sites
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Business-related Twitter success stories exist – there’s the tale of Dell bringing in about $3 million in sales, for example.  But it seems that such stories may remain rare, as new Hitwise data suggests that Twitter users are much more interested in free online media than in spending money.

What Works on Twitter May Work on Your eCommerce Site

A while back, I wrote a piece on a company called IMShopping, which was using Twitter for a fresh approach to eCommerce. Essentially what the company was doing was using a Twitter account to answer questions consumers have about products they are seeking, aiming to bring a human element often lacking in the online retail world.

Can eBay Win Back Sellers with a Shift in Focus?
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eBay recently announced it was returning to its roots as an auction site more focus on the "secondary market". This is probably a wise move as interest and enthusiasm for eBay have both steadily dwindled over the past year or so.

eBay Unleashes Changes Galore for Sellers
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Earlier in the year, eBay announced that it would be making two big announcements per year regarding the eBay Marketplace. Each announcement would be made 60 days in advance of when the changes were scheduled.

Using Twitter for a Fresh Approach to eCommerce
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WebProNews looked at some interesting research from Forrester and Shop.org this week, which indicated that while online retail sales have been increasing, those for the majority of web-only businesses have actually remained flat or on the decline.

One startup launching this week thinks injecting a little human touch into eCommerce can be a way to combat this. Naturally, Twitter is the medium the company’s using to do this.

Amazon Payments Now on Over 25 Major eCommerce Solutions
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Amazon announced today that Amazon Payments is now available in over 25 of the leading eCommerce shopping cart providers. These include solutions like CardinalCommerce, Miva Merchant, Magento, ShopVisible, Mercantec, and Zoovy.

eBay Testing New “Certified Sellers” Box
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It looks like eBay may be considering a program for "certified sellers." Ina Steiner at AuctionBytes talks about one of her readers who wrote in and told her about a survey for eBay he participated in that showed a made up listing page for a digital camera. It looked something like this:

eBay Drops $1.2 Billion on Korean eCommerce Site
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This has certainly been a huge week for eBay announcements. First, it was announced that StumbleUpon as being taken back by its founders. Then a similar scenario was announced for Skype. Then eBay announced a ton of changes to its marketplace.