Posts in Ecommerce

Microsoft acquires shopping comparison site

Microsoft yesterday acquired Jellyfish, a shopping comparison site which offers cashback on purchases for users, and ranks retailers according to the amount they agree to lower their prices.

The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, though Jellyfish raised $5m in funding last year from Kegonsa Capital Partners and Clyde Street Investments.

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Brands under user review spotlight, says study

A new survey from Deloitte & Touche has provided more evidence of the influence of user-generated reviews on consumers, as well as their growing significance for brands and etailers.

The study focused on US shoppers, and found that of the 62% of respondents that read user reviews, more than 80% had been ‘directly influenced’ by them – i.e. the reviews had either confirmed their initial choice or changed their mind.

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Web firms dominate Tech Track 100

It’s great to see web start-ups and online ad companies appearing so prominently in this year's Sunday Times Tech Track 100, published by the paper yesterday.

Doncaster-based online travel agency Holiday Rooms Direct tops the league table after increasing its sales from £184,000 to just under £7m in two years, while the top ten also includes DVD rental company Lovefilm and local search firm The Best Of.

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Tesco's online empire expands with clothing move

Yesterday’s papers were full of talk about plans by Tesco to grow its online empire and cause even larger headaches for online retailers in the UK.

Both the Observer and Mail on Sunday report that the supermarket giant is set to announce its long-anticipated move into the online clothing sector – one it has been planning since last year.

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US etail sales up 20%

US e-commerce sales rose by over a fifth in the second quarter of the year, according to new figures from the Commerce Department.

The period saw online retailers generating adjusted income of $33.6bn, an increase of 6.4% from Q1 and 20.8% from the same period in 2006.  

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Cotswold Co revamps e-commerce website

The Cotswold Company launched a revamped version of its e-commerce website this week, with improved navigation and an easier to use checkout function.

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Steve Case launches PayPal competitor

US company Revolution Money has launched MoneyExchange, a free online money transfer service, as a direct competitor to PayPal and Google Checkout.

The service is backed by AOL founder Steve Case and has also received funding from Citi, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley.

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Behavioural targeting – ask your wine waiter

In marketing technology, it’s important not to get carried away by your own spin. Behavioural targeting sounds quite complex, but the idea and the source of the uplift is really quite simple and it happens in the real world every day.

Picture your favourite restaurant. If you’re lucky enough to have a switched-on wine waiter, he will remember the wines you’ve enjoyed in the past and intelligently suggest new vintages as they come onto his list.

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Amazon launches music download site in beta

Amazon has launched a beta version of its much-anticipated DRM-free music download store.

The etailing giant claims it will have the world's largest collection of DRM-free music downloads, with 2m songs available from over 180,000 artists.

However, it is not yet available in the UK.

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Etail deliveries getting faster - report

The UK's etailers are fulfilling customer orders faster than before and have become more flexible with their delivery options, according to new research.

Snow Valley's analysis (PDF) of 71 online retailers found that delivery speeds were increasing - although some retailers would like to be more flexible but are limited by carrier costs.

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UK etailers failing to provide contact details - survey

A new study of the UK's online retailers has revealed that many e-commerce sites are not offering customers a range of contact details, while many offer limited delivery options and no customer feedback features.

The survey,  from website monitoring firm NetExtract analysed a sample of 10,000 e-commerce websites in the UK. It found that many e-commerce sites are missing very basic options.

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Site problems cause customers to flee

More evidence of the effect poorly functioning websites can have on etailers’ customer relations – this time from a poll of US consumers by Harris Interactive.

The survey found almost nine out ten respondents have experienced problems when making a transaction online, and 42% of those that have defected to a rival or abandoned the process.

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