Pinterest is one of Silicon Valley's hottest startups, and while companies like Facebook struggle to prove that they can monetize social media, many see reason to believe that the image-based social network is poised to deliver on the promise of social commerce.
That social commerce potential seems to have caught the attention of eBay, which yesterday announced "the new eBay."
With 6 billion phones on the planet and 1 billion of them smart phones, mobile is growing faster than ever. Tablets are close behind with 30% of Americans owning tablets or eReaders that are internet enabled. But what are we are marketers and businesses doing about it?
According to today's presentation by MEC's Global Chief Strategy Officer, Melanie Varley, and their Head of Mobile and Emerging Platforms, North America, Andy Wasef, the only way to be creative is to be mobile. Now, more than ever, we need to think of mobile first instead of an add on further into the process of developing a campaign or experience.
UK retail sales directly through social media are forecast to grow to £290m by 2014 from £210m.
The study, commissioned by eBay, also predicts that £3bn of retail sales will be influenced by social media by 2014.
The increase is expected to be driven by retailers targeting consumers with personalised offers and deals on social networks.
Nearly half (46%) of social media users are already using social platforms while thinking about making a purchase, and 40% of users are actively deciding what to buy based on what they have seen on social media platforms, including reviews and recommendations, and this is only set to grow.
Industry observers and analysts have been predicting that mobile commerce would have a bright future for nearly a decade, but it wasn't until recently that those predictions started to look like they might be accurate, if still poorly timed.
The latest source of confirmation that mobile commerce is real: eBay's CEO John Donahoe.
eBay has revealed that 20% of its UK vehicle sales in Q1 were made via smartphone, amounting to nearly 45,000 transactions.
It represents an increase of 120% year-on-year, and shows that the online marketplace is probably on track to hit its target of $8bn in mobile sales in 2012, almost the double the $5bn it achieved last year.
Among the cars sold were a Porsche 911 and a Land Rover Evoque that both went for more than £40,000.
The news comes in the same week that eBay launched its new Motors iPhone app complete with an image recognition (IR) search function, allowing users to search for cars and parts by taking a photo of the back of a vehicle.
Earlier this month eBay overhauled its iPad app to offer users a range of new functions and hi-res images.
The app now has a customisable homepage, back button and new ways to view search results. eBay appears to have taken the liberty of giving itself five stars in the product description, but are the upgrades actually an improvement?
User reviews in the App Store show that opinion is fairly polarised: 362 people give it five stars but 265 give it one star.
Nissan has partnered with Pentagon Interactive to launch an official merchandise and accessories shop on eBay.
Launched today, Nissan is the second car manufacturer to work with the e-commerce provider on an eBay-based marketplace – following the success of BMW Direct.
If you were to think of the five companies that are making the most of m-commerce, eBay would certainly be near the top of that list.
The auction site was on track to generate $5bn of revenue through its mobile platform in 2011, and is constantly seeking to innovate through its range of apps. Today it announced that its barcode scanning app, RedLaser, has been downloaded more than 2m times in the UK.
But what does the future hold, and how does eBay plan to grow its m-commerce revenues in 2012?
To find out we talked to eBay's senior director of mobile commerce in Europe, Olivier Ropars.
Auto Trader mobile has announced that it achieved 2.2m unique users in the month of January 2012.
The brand says that this represents 150% growth in car searches made via mobile in the past year.
eBay released the infographic below this morning, as covered by Richard Brewer-Hay on the official eBay Ink blog.
Following the acquisition of recommendation engine Hunch for $80m in November of last year, eBay has been working quietly on using the company’s technology to revamp its own e-commerce recommendations.