How e-commerce platforms stacked up on Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Cyber week is becoming Cyber November, according to B-to-B vendors that power e-commerce merchants. This holiday season, companies that build SMBs' online stores, which include Shopify, BigCommerce and Adobe's Magento, are all seeing record sales among merchants. Here's how e-commerce platforms fared over this holiday shopping weekend blitz.

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  • NOV 23, 2020

    Shipt shoppers are the latest entrants in the growing gig workers rights movement

    Some Shipt workers are trying to get better worker protections, and are partnering with the nonprofit group Gig Workers Collective’. The two hope the collaboration will give the group of delivery people leverage during negotiations. Unlike other tech-based delivery services, labor organizing among Target-owned Shipt workers has its own challenges.

  • NOV 23, 2020

    As big tech goes all in on live-stream shopping, the future may be for small brands

    Based on its success overseas, experts have been predicting for years that live-stream shopping will blow up in the U.S. Until now, even though apps like NTWRK are niche successes, that hasn’t happened. But the entrance of tech giants into live-stream shopping might signal a real breakout moment -- and might prove to be a boon especially to small, niche businesses.

  • NOV 18, 2020
    in-garage delivery

    Why Walmart and Amazon are battling over your garage door

    The obvious reason why Walmart and Amazon are jockeying to expand their in-home delivery systems is to make ordering online a simpler proposition. Both companies see having in-home and in-garage delivery options as bolstering their overall value to consumers -- the less work the consumer has to put in, the more attractive shelling out money for Amazon Prime or Walmart+ seems. But more quietly, in-home delivery programs may also be opening a pathway for both companies to expand their presence in the smart home market.

  • NOV 18, 2020

    As e-commerce skyrockets, Amazon seller acquisition companies are booming

    This year, a growing set of acquisition companies have turned buying up Amazon third-party sellers into an incredibly lucrative business. In exchange for an upfront payment, usually in the high hundreds of thousands or low millions, these companies will buy out successful Amazon third-party sellers and roll their products up into a larger conglomerate. That has made “getting acquired” an increasingly common goal among the most successful Amazon sellers -- and it might signal a broader shift in the culture of selling Amazon, as vast troves of outside capital floods into the sector.

  • NOV 17, 2020

    How dining reservation apps are helping restaurants prepare for winter

    The restaurant industry has been hit very hard by the coronavirus, which has ravaged many businesses and their longstanding dine-in models. With the help of reservation management tools from startups like Tock and Resy, chefs and owners are hoping to survive the coming winter with the lack of outdoor dining. Here's how these platforms are trying to help restaurants prepare for the upcoming cold nights.

  • NOV 16, 2020

    Why video games are the next retail frontier

    Now, if a player falls in love with a rug they’ve added to their virtual apartment, they can buy a real-life version from Design Home directly. Tthe iOS game is essentially doubling as a furniture store. That’s a significant escalation not just for the budding relationship between retailers and video games -- it also suggests that video games might themselves become the retailers of the future.

  • NOV 13, 2020

    ‘Creating an Amazon flywheel’: DoorDash’s S-1 annotated

    For years, DoorDash has been duking it out with others like Grubhub and Uber Eats. Over the last year, however, its marketshare has grown significantly over the last year. The newly-released financials show the company is still losing a lot of money, and is dependent on an ever-fluctuating marketing mixed with a precarious and low-margin industry. Here's our look into the company's financial filing.

  • NOV 13, 2020

    How Amazon’s fulfillment options help expand its control over Shopify and Etsy

    Amazon is slowly offering an option that would let sellers fulfill orders outside of its marketplace in unbranded boxes. In doing so, Amazon is only deepening its influence over the e-commerce world -- so much so that, if sellers opt to use its fulfillment services, Amazon will continue to make money no matter where consumers buy from. In a world where Amazon controls much of e-commerce logistics, even consumers who want to avoid shopping at Amazon might still end up benefiting from the corporation’s massive reach.

  • NOV 12, 2020

    How Amazon is trying to safeguard the next wave of panic buying

    Things likely won't be as crazy as they were last April for Amazon. But if panic buying does happen again, Amazon seems more prepared to handle it -- and to neutralize a subsequent rush of price gouging. Experts say the company has tweaked its algorithms to deal with new challenges. But even more hurdles lie ahead, and sellers are worried their businesses may be impacted.

  • NOV 12, 2020

    How Spotify’s Megaphone acquisition could further fuel the DTC podcast advertising boom

    Podcast advertising is booming -- particularly in light of the news Spotify recently announced that it is acquiring podcast advertising and publishing platform Megaphone. And direct-to-consumer startups are helping fuel that boom, considering the long-running joke that Blue Apron, MeUndies and Casper are essentially underwriting the shows they advertise on. The Spotify-Megaphone deal could have significant implications for what types of DTC brands are able to advertise on podcasts.

  • NOV 11, 2020

    Retailers are pushing their employees to become TikTok influencers

    For years, companies have invested in recruiting employee influencers who can put a face to the brand and offer a (favorable) behind-the-scenes glimpse into their companies. Companies believe that their employees can carry their message much further than a faceless brand account. But while the employee advocacy marketing tactic has existed for a few years, it is increasingly moving into TikTok -- in large part because TikTok is so good at creating a sense of intimacy with viewers.

  • NOV 11, 2020

    How Amazon Explore is trying to mix experiences with commerce

    On the surface, Amazon Explore looks almost identical to Airbnb’s Online Experiences platform, even down to the layout. Users toggle through a series of live-streamed sessions -- like cooking classes, ghost tours and fashion tutorials -- broken out by continent. But instead of an attempt to disrupt the hospitality industry, for Amazon, Explore seems to be an experiment with another, more intimate model of selling goods. It's all part of Amazon's move toward live-streaming commerce and more organic product discovery.

  • NOV 30, 2020

    Why shoppable content will help brands win this holiday season

    With in-person sales largely out of the picture this holiday season, brands must adapt to deliver the frictionless experiences that online consumers expect and demand.

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