During Snap's second quarter earnings yesterday, CEO Evan Spiegel called out e-commerce advertising as one of the company's bright spots during the quarter, as consumers are spending more money online during the coronavirus. Snap's revenue overall grew 17% year-over-year, to $454 million. But, even before the pandemic, Snapchat was heavily focused on wooing new e-commerce advertisers, particularly with new ad formats.
Since launching Instagram Checkout a year and a half ago, which allows customers to buy products from participating retailers' websites, Instagram has made it a priority to get more well-known retailers using the feature. Now, the next step on the app's to-do list is to make shopping more visible on Instagram. That was signaled by the launch of a new Shop tab in Instagram Explore last week. But Instagram still has a ways to go until users think of it as a shopping destination first and foremost.
In a way, pre-sales and waitlists are counterculture to today’s “fast delivery” windows, but they can also be a vital tool in building a customer base during uncertain times. For new brands like direct-to-consumer A/C maker July, pre-orders gave them two benefits: the opportunity to make connections and manage the uncertainties, said co-founder
As more merchants have gone online, Shopify has only benefited. But its growth strategy has changed; it’s no longer the turnkey e-commerce platform for everyone, but the invisible giant trying to take control.
BigCommerce filed its S-1 earlier this week, providing a little more visibility into how its business works. Since 2009, BigCommerce has provided digital commerce services for merchants. It touts customers including Woolrich, Camelbak, Clarks and Gillette. While it's true that digital commerce is accelerating at an unprecedented clip, the platform faces stiff competition from companies like Shopify.
First came wine boxes, now it's time for curated cocktail kits. As the virus waves continue, services argue consumers are prepared to play home mixologists beyond the pandemic. Which is to say: craft cocktail kit delivery is having a moment.
Groupon used to be the darling of online retail. Now it's struggling to survive. What went wrong? It was a series of failed pivots, along with the fact that its core offering is no longer in demand. The question remains whether or not it can resurrect business.
Stitch Fix has long maintained that its business model is a blend of art and data science, with its stylists, who represent the artistic side of the company, ultimately deciding which clothes to send to clients. But 11 current and former stylists Modern Retail spoke with said they felt like the artistic side of the company has been devalued, following the announcement earlier this month that Stitch Fix was laying of 1,400 of its California stylists between now and the fall.
After months of stocking up on essentials, summer is proving to be a bright spot for struggling industries like apparel. Swimwear is an example in which brands with a dedicated following are reframing what their merchandise is used for. It can also mark a turning point for other stunted travel-related categories.
Platforms like Google and Amazon have made new moves to crack down on fake product listings. This isn't a new problem, but that both are taking it on now show that they're trying better foster brand trust. The question remains whether or not these moves are enough for companies to feel protected from bad actors.
Resale platform Mercari is letting sellers offer two-hour courier service via Postmates. Mercari Now, which it developed before the pandemic, allows users to accept local orders without packing and shipping them via parcel, said CEO John Lagerling. Mercari joins other companies investing in new same-day delivery services -- and Postmates has remained a popular business partner.
Walmart just announced a new integration with Shopify allowing merchants to easily upload products to the big box store's online marketplace. It's clearly a way for Walmart to more directly compete with Amazon. While Amazon remains the biggest player in e-commerce, the smaller players are figuring out ways they can differentiate themselves and grow their online presences.
After a number of companies reported their first quarter performance, we got a glimpse into how prepared some of the most prominent retail giants were for the post-coronavirus digitally accelerated world. When the pandemic first hit, the United States shut down leaving retailers relying solely on their e-commerce business. Now, we can begin to see which companies were ready for this transition.
Pernell Cezar and Rod Johnson, who co-founded the coffee brand in 2018, spoke to Modern Retail about running a growing coffee brand. Their strategy helped Blk & Bold become the top selling coffee on Amazon during the pandemic, along with national distribution at Target and Whole Foods. While other coffee companies focus on placements in shops, Blk & Bold went a different route and went all in on retail.
Instacart just announced a deal with C&S Wholesale Grocers that represents 3,000 smaller stores. It's part of the delivery apps strategy to focus less on the bigger grocery players and more on the independent mom and pop ones that don't have the capital to build out their own e-commerce program. Instacart isn't the only platform vying for this piece of the grocery pie, and it remains to be seen whether these businesses are enough for the digital services to become sustainable.
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