more articles by

Michael Waters

  • AUG 24, 2021

    How online marketplaces are leading the trading card boom

    As eBay and Amazon struggle against the pressures of verifying the authenticity of these cards, niche sites like TCGplayer, Cardmarket and Troll and Toad have emerged as influential hubs for buying and selling trading cards.

  • AUG 23, 2021

    Why retailers are launching private label pet food

    While sales in the pet category surge over the past year and a half, pet food has gained a lot of popularity as a private label product for retailers and grocery stores. That seems to be mostly because private label pet food has both reasonably high profit margins -- and, despite the saturation, is not a hard market to enter into.

  • AUG 23, 2021

    ‘I think it is harder for smaller businesses to launch’: How aggregators are changing Amazon

    In 2018, Goja was one of the top 40 Amazon sellers in the world, and a year later, in 2019, it received an investment from JP Morgan, 3L Capital and Next Coast Ventures for an undisclosed amount in order to begin acquiring existing brands for the first time. Goja founder Walter Gonzalez Jr. spoke with Modern Retail about how the landscape has evolved.

  • AUG 19, 2021

    Amazon Briefing: The rise of the e-commerce city

    Though Amazon has warehouses virtually everywhere in the U.S. in order to meet its delivery commitments, its physical footprint is not equally spread out across the country. As e-commerce booms, it’s beginning to reshape the landscape of some cities. A new air hub in Cincinnati showcases this.

  • AUG 17, 2021

    Unpacked: Why more brands are splitting shipping containers to cut costs

    LCL shipments have more than doubled in popularity since the start of the pandemic -- a trend that points not just to the rising popularity of LCL itself, but also highlights the extent to which brands are still scrambling to manage a highly volatile and expensive international freight system.

  • AUG 16, 2021

    Wholesale marketplaces say virtual trade shows are here to stay

    While virtual trade shows were initially seen as a temporary blip amid the pandemic, companies like Faire and FashionGo now say they have no plans to stop. Both companies said their number of attendees has continued to increase for events in 2021 versus last year. As more and more wholesalers add e-commerce options, attending a digital trade show to find new products, too, may soon become a routine feature of the industry.

  • AUG 12, 2021

    Amazon Briefing: As drone popularity wanes, delivery robots try to take its place

    While some experts see Amazon delivery bots as having potential to reach customers, in general, “it’s just not gaining as much traction as you’d expect at that point,” said one expert. Delivery robots, on ground or by air, have never gotten past the pilot phase. And recent Amazon changes help explain why.

  • AUG 06, 2021

    ‘They’re just cashed-up private equity’: Flippa CEO Blake Hutchison on the rise of e-commerce rollups

    In the last five years especially, e-commerce business marketplace Flippa witnessed a huge market shift. Before, individual entrepreneurs buy small e-commerce businesses. And today, a flood of VC-backed aggregators like Thrasio make up a significant share of the big-ticket purchases on the platform. The company's CEO said that, from his vantage point, some of these companies are highly sophisticated, but others are “cashed-up, private equity masked as a FBA aggregator.”

  • AUG 05, 2021

    Amazon Briefing: Amazon is no longer a retailer, exactly

    Only about half of Amazon's overall revenue is coming from first-party retail, the business that first catapulted Amazon to prominence. The other 50% is coming from Amazon’s newer businesses: seller services; subscriptions, mainly through Prime and Twitch; Amazon Web Services; and advertising.

  • AUG 04, 2021

    Why food delivery companies are betting on airports

    A group of companies focused on food pickup and delivery, including Servy and AtYourGate, have gained traction throughout the pandemic. Now these companies are hoping to use that foothold to turn airport food delivery into a central feature of the travel retail world -- but there are many educational and labor hurdles to getting there.

  • AUG 03, 2021

    Retailers are expanding online commissions beyond influencers

    New types of ambassador programs from retailers like Express are bringing a sales-based commission model to independent or contract workers without social followings. Whereas previous programs target bigger-name influencers, the newest additions to the retail space are betting that more intimate connections between customer and seller in e-commerce can drive purchases much more successfully.

  • JUL 29, 2021

    Cheatsheet: Amazon’s 2021 growth was propelled by retail services

    Amazon’s second quarter earnings report reveals the extent to which the company has been able to diversify its revenues, especially in advertising and retail services -- and it has used those new markets to clock in a healthy profit.

  • JUL 29, 2021

    Amazon Briefing: Rollup companies are going international

    Acquirers are not just entering more countries. They’re also rapidly expanding the marketplaces where they are acquiring brands. Until this year, the rollup space was nearly singularly focused on Amazon-native brands -- but now acquirers are beginning to buy up brands native to platforms like Flipkart, Mercado Libre, Shopee and many more.

  • JUL 28, 2021

    Unpacked: How Uber’s logistics ambitions are becoming more serious

    After acquiring Transplace for $2.25 billion, Uber Freight is cementing its status as an important player in the growing world of digital freight brokerage. But it is also opening itself up to an entry into the parcel shipping space.

  • JUL 27, 2021

    ‘Collab culture is the way to innovate’: McCormick’s Alia Kemet on the company’s influencer strategy

    While McCormick has previously partnered with other brands to co-launch a product -- Frank’s RedHot Goldfish is one example -- this is the first time an influencer has created an original McCormick product. That is important because, although fashion and beauty brands have forged similar influencer partnerships for years -- the D’Amelio sisters’ fashion line with Hollister is one rough equivalent -- that model of influencer-branded products is spreading into other industries.

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