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Despite a raft of headlines about its potential as a shopping environment in recent months, Second Life creator Linden Labs has conceded that few of its resident stores are yet making fortunes in the virtual world.
"Most of the brands that have come in have not created a strong enough presence to create a significant business for them at this moment in time," Linden Labs marketing director Glenn Fisher told the Le Web 3 conference in Paris this afternoon.
The American Express Retail Monitor has found that, as shoppers become more clued up about the products they are buying, retailers have realised the importance of providing product information.
The survey found that 85% of retailers view the provision of product information as a key factor in attracting the kind of consumers who now demand comprehensive product information before making a purchase.
All of which sounds a lot like common sense, yet we all know that many etail sites still fail in this area.
The comparison engines sector has enjoyed strong growth in recent years, buoyed by sharp increases in the number of web users and the level of online researching before purchase.
However, to maintain their level of progress, it is clear that shopping comparison sites are facing major challenges to keep both consumers and merchants happy.
Social shopping start-up Reevoo is in the process of securing Series-A funding to help it expand internationally and into new vertical sectors.
The directors of defunct online wine exchange Uvine are facing a government investigation following its Web 1.0-style collapse in September.
Solicitors Howes Percival have been appointed by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) to look into the conduct of the company, which entered administration with debts to its members totalling around £1.5m.
Security concerns are proving a major barrier to the growth of e-commerce, according to a study by Gartner.
Gartner estimates that online sales to the value of $2bn were lost in 2006 because of concerns about malware and the theft of personal and credit card information.
I recently participated in Selfridges' mystery shopper programme, run by ABA Research. The deal is - and it's a crafty one - Selfridges runs its mystery programme in such a way that typical cost-to-business-research is actually a boost to sales.
I originally came across the programme when trying to find a product online. It was a no-brainer to apply, as I'd be shopping there anyway.
Flickr has spotted a new revenue stream via the launch of its camera finder service, which displays the most popular cameras used on the photo sharing site.
Flickr is using the data from photos uploaded to the site to display the most popular makes of cameras and camera phones.
The IMRG has predicted that the UK online sales boom will continue through Christmas into next year, with the internet driving sales of up to £42 billion in 2007, up from about £30 billion this year.
The prediction comes in the wake of the biggest ever month for online retail sales. A record £2.7 billion was spent online last month by UK shoppers, beating the record set last December.
UK retail sales were higher than expected in October, with sales boosted by the growth in online shopping.
According to the Office for National Statistics, the volume of retail sales increased by 0.9% in October, higher than analysts’ predictions of 0.3%. This represents the biggest monthly rise since November last year.
New research from the Royal Mail suggests that, for those employees who like to do their online shopping from work, Friday lunchtime is the most popular time.
Of those online shoppers who have internet access at work, 65% are likely to buy during the week - and Friday afternoon at 1pm is the most popular time for one in eight.
Skype founder Niklas Zennström recently named AllPeers among Europe’s four most innovative tech start-ups - and you can't really argue with him.
Launched at the end of August after four years of development work, AllPeers’ private P2P platform allows users to share videos, photos, webpages and other paraphernalia with their family and friends.
But next year, it also intends to expand its technology to allow files to be shared publicly, and to offer content creators a chance to earn money through micro-payments, rather than through advertising.
We met up with CEO Cedric Maloux and CTO Matt Gertner to find out more.