Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information
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Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information
Covering cashback industry, e-commerce, retail, mobile, loyalty programs and incentive marketing news.
Curated by Douglas G Hall
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Is Amazon 4-Star reinventing the department store?

Is Amazon 4-Star reinventing the department store? | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

If you’re a certain age, you might remember the grand FW Woolworth’s department store. Founded in 1878, the successful chain pioneered the five-and-dime store where you could find thousands of products at reasonable prices. It grew into one of the world’s largest department store chains until closing for good in July 1997.

It would be a stretch to say that Amazon’s new SoHo, New York City retail outlet is a department store but it’s interesting to think of Amazon 4-Star as a virtual department store-like extension of its online marketplace.

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PayByCar makes in-vehicle payments easy

PayByCar makes in-vehicle payments easy | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

US commuters make $212 billion in purchases on the way to and from work every year. That’s the market PayByCar’s new service is targeting with the launch of its new “auto” payment service.

Easy in-car payments
Verdeva’s PayByCar service is an in-vehicle payments solution that lets drivers use toll transponders to simplify and speed up non-toll transactions like filling up your car with gas, paying for a car wash or grabbing a burger and fries at a drive-through restaurant.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

PayByCar makes a lot of sense for the US market.

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Douglas G Hall's curator insight, February 15, 2018 7:02 PM

PayByCar makes a lot of sense for the US market.

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ThreatMetrix Q4 Report: New cybercrime battlegrounds, trends

ThreatMetrix Q4 Report: New cybercrime battlegrounds, trends | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

New cybercrime battlegrounds are growing and adapting with consumers’ use and adoption of new technologies. We’ve got highlights from ThreatMetrix Q4 2017 Cybercrime Report and a snapshot of what new threats are on the horizon.

Among some of the new developments and trends are a rise in mobile attacks; more advanced phishing and malware and new efforts in e-commerce fraud and identity theft.

Q4 Cybercrime overview
ThreatMetrix analyzed more than 7.9 billion transactions with more than half on mobile devices. Quick highlights included...

Douglas G Hall's insight:

ThreatMetrix Q4 2017 Cybercrime Report provides valuable insight into cybercrime, trends and potential solutions.

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Douglas G Hall's curator insight, February 12, 2018 2:55 PM

ThreatMetrix Q4 2017 Cybercrime Report provides valuable insight into cybercrime, trends and potential solutions.

Douglas G Hall's curator insight, February 12, 2018 3:00 PM

ThreatMetrix Q4 2017 Cybercrime Report provides valuable insight into cybercrime, trends and potential solutions.

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2017 holiday retail roundup: Winners and losers | Payments NEXT

2017 holiday retail roundup: Winners and losers | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Final 2017 holiday e-commerce sales results are in with numerous winners mixed in with some prominent losers.  Let’s start with the good news.

Adobe e-commerce sales highlights
Adobe’s 2017 Online Shopping Holiday Report was mostly positive, with some valuable insight for next year’s planning:

-2017 holiday online sales hit a record $108.2 billion, up 14.7%
- Cyber Monday sales also reached a record $6.6 billion, the largest single shopping day
- mobile sales were $35.9 billion, making up 33.1% of total sales and up 28% from 2016
- 44.8% of sales were driven by search (natural search at 21.3% and paid search at 23.5%)
- sales between Thanksgiving and cyber Monday reached $19.6 billion, up 15.2%
-during the same weekend holiday shopping days, mobile sales hit more than $7 billion, driving 52% of visits and 36% of revenue.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Retail industry seized a big sigh of relief as 2017 sales were up 5% though not such good news for nine fashion retailers who struggled and are fighting for survival.

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Christmas with AI a reality at Mall of America | Payments NEXT

Christmas with AI a reality at Mall of America | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Christmas shoppers at the massive Bloomington, Minnesota Mall of America will have extra help from a holiday chatbot this year.


Launched on December 12, the chatbot is available on the shopping center website, its Facebook page and a mobile app for use inside the Mall.


Shoppers can ask questions, plan their shopping trip in advance, and while inside the mall ask for directions, get gift suggestions, and learn about discounts and special deals.


The chatbot and app were developed by it’s Labs who used Mall of America historical shopper data, Twitter feeds and Facebook data to develop an extensive database of frequently asked questions and answers. They also developed Alexa “skills” for use by shoppers in planning in advance

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Shopping with Artificial intelligence at Mall of America.

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Holiday credit card fraud dropped 29% this year | Payments NEXT

Holiday credit card fraud dropped 29% this year | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it
A new report from security firm Iovation shows 2017 holiday credit card fraud dropped 29% during the key Nov 24-27 shopping days.

Data also showed 62% of transactions were made via mobile devices and tablets compared to 55% last year.

While the trend for improved security is encouraging, it’s also interesting to note that mobile devices may be making fraud more difficult for fraudsters.

Iovation also surveyed 1,000 consumers and found that password practices were inadequate.
Douglas G Hall's insight:

Iovation research shows Thanksgiving holiday credit card fraud dropped 29% this year.

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Douglas G Hall's curator insight, December 5, 2017 2:25 PM

Iovation research shows Thanksgiving holiday credit card fraud dropped 29% this year.

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Black Friday sales analysis: Online spending up, foot traffic down | Payments NEXT

Black Friday sales analysis: Online spending up, foot traffic down | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

US Thanksgiving and Black Friday online sales hit record levels while foot traffic in retail stores was down slightly at most locations.

Preliminary reports from Adobe Analytics say Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday online sales totaled $7.09 billion, up 17.9% from the year before. Black Friday sales alone totaled $5.03 billion.

Adobe predicts Cyber Monday sales will total $6.6 billion, the highest ever for a single day of online sales in the US.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Initial reports say Black Friday was a big success online and slightly less so in the store.

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What's ahead for holiday retail sales? | Cashback Industry News

What's ahead for holiday retail sales? | Cashback Industry News | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

We’re looking at the holiday retail sales forecast for this year’s retail and e-commerce shopping season. Who will be most successful and who will struggle to compete online and in-store? Cashback Industry News has the answers. The National Retail Federation predicts holiday shopping sales will increase between 3.6% and 4% over 2016. US retail sales could reach $682 billion the Federation said.

A new study from Market Track LLC reports only 30% of US shoppers plan to shop on Thanksgiving Day compared with 50% in 2016 and only 40% plan to brave the Black Friday crowds. US Commerce Dept research shows e-commerce sales were up 15.7% in Q3. Google is building a retail alliance that includes Walmart, Costco, Kohl’s, Ulta and Target. Its retail partner customers can now compete with Amazon’s Alexa by ordering products by voice on Google Express.

Amazon plans to double its fulfillment workforce by hiring another 120,000 temporary holiday season workers and may retain some workers  after the busy season. Unlike some major retailers, Macy’s will open for shopping at 5 PM on Thanksgiving Day. Tough retail markets forced Nordstrom to postpone its plan to go private although it will revisit the idea next year.

Analysts are not optimistic about a turnaround at beleaguered Toys R Us. A recent industry presentation by AT Kearney highlighted the rapidly changing retail ecosystem and how consumers now search for, source and buy products. Alibaba is now the world’s biggest e-commerce company and its stock is up 109% this year.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

The holiday retail sales forecast is positive with sales expected to grow 4% over last year. As this report shows, there are some retailers that will struggle however.

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Amazon Business opens for business in India and Japan

Amazon Business opens for business in India and Japan | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it
The B2B arm of Amazon.com now operates with e-commerce sites in four markets outside of the United States, including the sites it opened within the last 10 months in the U.K. and Germany.

Amazon Business opened its e-commerce doors in India last week, following its debut earlier last month in Japan.

That brings the B2B e-commerce portal of Amazon.com Inc. to four markets outside of the United States, with the sites launched in April 2017 for the United Kingdom and in December 2016 for Germany.
Douglas G Hall's insight:

Amazon aims to grow its B2B business by expanding in India and Japan following the UK and Germany.

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Shoppers ‘cutting grocery bills’ with smartphones

Shoppers ‘cutting grocery bills’ with smartphones | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

In a recent survey of more than 2,600 European consumers, data and analytics group IRI found that more than one-third of shoppers are using mobile applications to find information on products and seek out “the best offers”.

Of these “digital info seekers”, IRI said that 65% reported that their efforts are saving them money. A total of 37% of people reported that they use the internet to seek out in-store promotions and offers, while 22% use the internet to identify which shops have the best deals on a given day.

But that isn’t all mobile data is being used for, with a further 38% of people searching for information on product ingredients and usage – pointing to the growing consumer demand for ingredient transparency and clean labels as well as concern over the health credentials of products.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

65% of shoppers save money searching for info with smartphones.

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Study: Value, deals and coupons have strong influence on grocery purchases

Study: Value, deals and coupons have strong influence on grocery purchases | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Today, we’re looking at the state of digital coupons, gift cards and loyalty programs and how consumers are responding to them. New Forrester research shows 79% of shoppers will not buy an item if they forgot to bring the coupon. Deloitte research found 51% of grocery sales are now digitally influenced. IRI reports 65% of “digital info seekers” are using their smartphone to find savings and 37% say they look for deals while in-store.

Valassis research shows 57% of consumers are more likely to buy groceries online if they can use coupons and 73% of millennials will do the same. George Bousis, founder of gift card platform Raise, realized 20% of gift cards were unused and he figured there had to be a better way for consumers to get their value. While Amazon Prime is not always considered a loyalty program, it works because it turned the loyalty concept upside down with real value. As further proof, Amazon has a new partnership with Hilton that allows the hotel Honors loyalty members to spend their points on Amazon.

Travel loyalty programs are prime targets for blockchain disruption by offering data, security and convenience. Restaurants can attract millennials with loyalty programs that have well-designed rewards for purchases. A Forbes article asks if collecting airline loyalty points is even worth the effort anymore. Where is the value? The average American is a member of 29 loyalty programs, will only use half of them, and The Financial Post questions the hassle for both business and consumers.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Coupons, gift cards and loyalty programs -- who's winning with consumers?

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Swiss chocolatier unveils a 4th type of chocolate: 'Ruby chocolate'

Swiss chocolatier unveils a 4th type of chocolate: 'Ruby chocolate' | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

A Swiss chocolate company has unveiled a fourth type of chocolate — “ruby chocolate” — and it naturally has a pink hue.

 

Manufactured by Zurich-based chocolate giant Barry Callebaut, ruby chocolate is made from the ruby cocoa bean and contains no berries, berry flavoring or added color to achieve its color and taste.

 

Ruby chocolate has a unique flavor, which Barry Callebaut describes in a statement as “a tension between berry-fruitiness and luscious smoothness.” The new confection is aimed at millennials, according to the company’s chief innovation and quality officer, Peter Boone.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Swiss chocolatier Barry Callebaut  andunveils a 4th type of chocolate: 'Ruby chocolate'.

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Gap to close 200 stores, expand Old Navy

Gap to close 200 stores, expand Old Navy | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Gap Inc. announced Wednesday a plan to close 200 underperforming Gap and Banana Republic stores over the next three years, according to a company release.

 

At the same time, the company plans to open 270 Old Navy and Athleta stores, which executives expect to generate $10 billion and $1 billion in net sales respectively in “the next few years,” according to the release.

 

Gap also said it plans to make “continued significant investment” in fulfillment capacity, loyalty programs, personalization, omnichannel services, artificial intelligence and other data-driven efforts, all to boost a digital business that the company said has grown in the double digits. Gap expects store closures and other cost cuts to generate about $500 million in savings over the next three years.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Gap plans to close 200 Banana Republic and Gap stores while opening 270 new Old Navy and Athleta stores.

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The double-edged sword of crypto regulation

The double-edged sword of crypto regulation | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

The recent move by two major cryptocurrency players to seek regulatory approval has started drawing accolades from industry experts, including Fundstrat co-founder Tom Lee--the only Wall Street analyst to cover Bitcoin.

Lee says that the latest development by two major crypto exchanges, Coinbase and Circle, to seek SEC approval is good for future Bitcoin prices.

Why? Because the uncertainty coming from the regulatory overhang has only served to depress demand for cryptocurrencies by preventing institutional investors from participating in the market.

Coinbase, a leading U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange, has announced its intention to become a fully SEC-regulated broker-dealer.  Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs-backed crypto platform Circle is seeking a federal banking license and an SEC registration that would enable it to operate as a brokerage and a trading venue.

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BOJ Kuroda says cryptocurrency won't threaten yen, largely speculative

BOJ Kuroda says cryptocurrency won't threaten yen, largely speculative | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda said on Tuesday cryptocurrencies likely won’t threaten legal tenders like the yen any time soon as they are mostly used for speculative trading, rather than as payments and settlement means.


Kuroda also said the BOJ was closely watching developments in cryptocurrrency trading to ensure they do not erode public trust over the safety of existing settlement systems overseen by the central bank.

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Starbucks tests non-cash-only payments | Payments NEXT

Starbucks tests non-cash-only payments | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

When it comes to payments, the idea of no longer using cash may not be far away if an experiment at Starbucks in Seattle is any indication.


At an upscale downtown Seattle coffee shop location, a Seattle Times reporter could not pay for a latte and lemon cake with cash.


A Starbucks’ spokesperson said the Second Avenue and University location is testing the no-cash payments system to study its impact on consumer experience.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Starbucks is testing a non-cash-only payments policy at a busy downtown Seattle coffee location.

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Douglas G Hall's curator insight, January 30, 2018 9:58 AM

Starbucks is testing a non-cash-only payments policy at a busy downtown Seattle coffee location.

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Will Sears sales on Amazon bail the struggling chain out? | Payments NEXT

Will Sears sales on Amazon bail the struggling chain out? | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

In what some may call a deal with the devil, Sears continues to offer more of its iconic brand products for sale on Amazon’s e-commerce platform. The latest include DieHard batteries, tires and other car products to be available by Spring 2018.


During the past summer, Sears started selling its Kenmore appliances on Amazon which it called a “success.” Some analysts expressed concern that Sears is cannibalizing its most important in-store brand sales.


Sears is also exploring selling its Craftsman tools brand as part of its survival strategy.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Will selling DieHard batteries and other auto products on Amazon help Sears recovery?

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Competitors, look out for Amazon's newest killer e-commerce strategy | Cashback Industry News

Competitors, look out for Amazon's newest killer e-commerce strategy | Cashback Industry News | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

A new video patent approval for Amazon casts an interesting light on its plans for video commerce.

While Google still has a lead in online shopping research by consumers, Amazon is now its biggest competitor in providing information and online user-generated written reviews for shoppers.

Research firm L2 reports Amazon is now testing video reviews with some of its 2 million merchant partners.  Video reviews would clearly keep shoppers on the Amazon website longer and provide useful information to help them make purchases.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Video reviews and content could be Amazon's latest killer e-commerce strategy.

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Amazon may have patented the next big thing in online shopping

Amazon may have patented the next big thing in online shopping | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it
User-generated Amazon reviews are one of the most important ways that consumers find products and decide what to buy. So much so that Amazon has consistently shown itself to be Google’s competitor in e-commerce search. Almost all Amazon product reviews are written but, as business research firm L2 wrote, Amazon is now pivoting to video.


It’s a broad strategy with Amazon inviting some of its 2 million merchant partners to join the test program, where videos will be posted to the site in mid-December. According to L2, “this feature is a logical step given how often consumers watch how-to and product review videos before making purchases. By adding the feature, Amazon clearly aims to keep shoppers on its own site, preventing them from migrating to YouTube or social media platforms.”


There’s potentially another reason for Amazon to promote the use of video in e-commerce. It now has a way to offer customers discounts for watching ads. In October, Amazon was awarded a patent for “content-based price reductions and incentives.” The patent says that “customers in an electronic environment can be presented with the option to receive advertising, such as audio, video, or interactive content, in order to receive discounted pricing or similar benefits.”

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Amazon's patent request shows where it plans to take user generated reviews, rewards and online shopping strategies in the near future. Competitors beware.

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Blockchain technology news: Business cases, applications growing faster, globally | Payments NEXT

Blockchain technology news: Business cases, applications growing faster, globally | Payments NEXT | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Today’s blockchain technology news looks at the rapid increase in blockchain business cases and continuing embrace by the industries around the world. Stellar and IBM announced a partnership to use Stellar’s lumens cryptocurrency for cross-border payments. At Sibos, the buzz was all about real-time payments and how to enable them with blockchain technology.

Speaking at a Toronto Ripple conference, former Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke was bullish on blockchain technology for banking and payments innovations. JPMorgan Chase is launching a new interbank payments platform powered by Quorum blockchain. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim  also said global bankers are “excited” about blockchain though cautious about cryptocurrencies.

IBM’s new insurance industry platform, built on blockchain, should deliver quicker response and lower costs for the industry. Blockchain may also challenge YouTube and Netflix, improving delivery and enabling content producers to monetize their content. A recent Credit Suisse panel liked blockchain infrastructure but harshly criticized ICOs.

US Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan says blockchain technology could reduce millions of dollars in government waste and might even play a role in secretary Rex Tillotson’s reorganization plans.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

The number of blockchain projects and business cases is growing faster around the world.

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New government data suggests e‑commerce sales jumped 15.7% in Q3

New government data suggests e‑commerce sales jumped 15.7% in Q3 | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Growth in U.S. retail sales that take place outside of stores, known as nonstore sales, accelerated in September, growing 0.5% compared with August 2017 and 9.2% compared with September of last year, according to retail sales data released today by the U.S. Commerce Department.

An Internet Retailer analysis of the correlation between e-commerce sales and nonstore sales shows that e-commerce growth remains steady, growing at 15.0% in September compared with last year and 15.7% in the third quarter.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Retail sales transacted outside of stores increased 9.2% year over year in September. Total retail sales jumped 4.4%

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As the Grocery Landscape Changes, Saving is Top of Mind

As the Grocery Landscape Changes, Saving is Top of Mind | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Findings from the online survey of 8,550 value-seeking consumers indicate that shoppers are more likely to buy groceries online if they can use more coupons (57 percent; 73 percent for millennials). And the study shows that consumers are just getting their feet wet with meal-kit delivery (16 percent) and grocery delivery services (17 percent), however around 40 percent of respondents plan to use more of these services in the next year. Additionally, the survey uncovered that half of shoppers are interested in trying in-home virtual assistant devices to purchase groceries or other household items.

The most overwhelming grocery-related theme stemming from the survey is the appetite for deals, with 95 percent of respondents desiring coupons for grocery items. And the opportunity to save actually guides many consumers’ shopping plans with 51 percent planning around circulars, coupons and deals.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Savings are the biggest driver for consumers.

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Study: Value, deals and coupons have strong influence on grocery purchases

Study: Value, deals and coupons have strong influence on grocery purchases | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Ninety-five percent of survey participants said they want coupons for grocery items, and 51% actually plan their shopping trips around retail circulars, coupons and deals. 


While consumers look for deals both online and offline, 99% of the 163 billion coupons distributed by consumer packaged goods companies are issued through print media, according to a Valassis infographic. Yet 16% of the 1.08 billion coupons consumers redeem are from digital formats, with the other 84% print coupons. Valassis calls this a "redemption activation imbalance" between marketer choices and retailer influences.

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Research says: 95% of consumers want coupons for grocery items.

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Retail news roundup: REI, Rebecca Minkoff, Callebaut, Target, Kroger's, Gap, One King's Lane

Retail news roundup: REI, Rebecca Minkoff, Callebaut, Target, Kroger's, Gap, One King's Lane | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Our retail news roundup includes REI’s marketing power, fashion retailer Rebecca Minkoff, Target’s lower pricing strategy and many more retail industry trends and insight. REI’s “Opt Outside” campaign was risky but turned into a huge brand loyalty building strategy. Fashion retailer Rebecca Minkoff took its runway fashion shows directly to the consumer with huge sales results backed up by innovative in-store technology. Staples completed its $7 billion sale to a private equity firm and now begins a new chapter in its retail story.

Target lowered prices on many core consumer products such as cereal, paper towels, baby formula, razors and bath tissue as part of its new in-store, sales strategy. Investors didn’t like grocery chain Kroger’s $.39 drop in revenue per share for Q2 as the company readjusts to competitors including Amazon’s Whole Foods. While Gap plans to close more than 200 under-performing Banana Republic and Gap stores, it also plans to open 270 new Old Navy and Athleta outlets.

One King’s Lane is best known for its e-commerce sales of high-quality home furnishings and decor products but consumers will soon be able to walk into its first bricks and mortar store in Southampton, New York. In the “need-to-know” department, Swiss chocolatier Barry Callebaut launched “ruby chocolate“, a pink colored chocolate delight which it believes will appeal to millennials. How come millennials get such special treatment?

Toys R Us has hired a debt management team to guide it through the holiday season and its $400 million debt due in 2018. Amazon rebranded its online fashion business Shopbop with a new logo, name, product presentation and loyalty program. As part of its multichannel growth strategy, Alibaba’s online shopping business Tmall will also serve as a product supply chain for as many as 10,000 small shops in China’s regional centers.

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One Kings Lane puts down physical roots

One Kings Lane puts down physical roots | Cashback Industry Insight - global news, trends & information | Scoop.it

Online home furnishings and decor retailer One Kings Lane is making its temporary foray into brick-and-mortar retail more permanent.
 
The retailer opened its first-ever physical location, a seasonal pop-up in the posh resort town of Southampton, New York, at the beginning of summer. But the company said the response to the temporary store was so positive that it has decided to make it a permanent space.
 
The 3,500-sq.-ft. store is located in a 19th century building that once housed a library.  The space is designed to offer an “immersive lifestyle experience,” the company said, and offers a curated selection of product, including one-of-a-kind vintage pieces.
 

Douglas G Hall's insight:

Online furnishings and decor retailer One Kings Lane opens its first bricks and mortar store in Southampton, New York.

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