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Connected Packaging Promises Unprecedented Consumer Engagement
January 17, 2017 at 9:12 am

Consumers today are better informed and more selective about the products they purchase than ever before. Armed with smartphones and social media, shoppers can research products on-the-go and select items that best fit their needs. According to a recent RichRelevance study, nearly three-quarters of all consumers, and 84 percent of millennials, use their mobile phones…

What the Holiday Season Means for 2017
January 11, 2017 at 9:31 am

As consumer demand increases, whether it's for a specific product or expedited shipping, smart retailers are rethinking their approach and looking to find ways to optimize their fulfillment operations. Partnering with new providers can enable new capabilities (e.g., same-day delivery or in-store pick up) and break through traditional organizational boundaries that separate digital channels and…

The Value of Allocation Accuracy
January 9, 2017 at 10:06 am

It’s among the most frustrating parts of retailing: You built a strong assortment plan. Great product mix. Good margin. Customer response is better than you had hoped for. You're ready for an outstanding selling season. Yet the allocation process drops the ball. Too many large dresses in store A while the racks are empty in…

How Retailers Can Better Manage Supply Chains in 2017
January 4, 2017 at 10:42 am

Consumer behavior and expectations have changed. The new buying experience with online shopping is putting retailers and their suppliers under pressure to deliver more goods, to more locations, faster. To compete in today's hypercompetitive landscape, retailers should reimagine the supply chain as a digital supply network that combines services, talent and information. B-to-B cloud technologies…

Retailers Preparing for National Returns Day
January 4, 2017 at 10:09 am

UPS is preparing for National Returns Day, happening tomorrow (Jan. 5). According to the company’s website, UPS expects to ship back 1.3 million returns packages to retailers on Thursday, and will handle about 5.8 million returns packages throughout the first full week of January. This means big business for UPS and other parcel services like…

Run-DMC Sues Amazon, Wal-Mart for $50M
January 3, 2017 at 11:17 am

Members of the rap group Run-DMC are suing Amazon.com and Wal-Mart for $50 million for trademark infringement. The suit, filed last Thursday in federal court in New York, accuses the retailers of manufacturing, marketing and selling products with the group's trademarked name, including glasses, hats, T-shirts and wallets. Run-DMC says in the suit that it…

Analysis of UPS and FedEx Dimensional Weight Pricing Changes for 2017
January 3, 2017 at 9:49 am

UPS recently announced it will be changing its dimensional pricing rules following a similar change from FedEx. Effective Jan. 8, the dimensional divisor will be reduced from 166 to 139 for all packages over one cubic foot, or 1,728 cubic inches. Packages below this threshold will continue to be subject to the current dimensional weight…

3 Ways Retailers Can Make Holiday Shoppers Very Happy
December 23, 2016 at 11:06 am

This holiday season has been busier than ever. Cyber Monday beat Adobe predictions that consumers will spend $3.36 billion. Amazon.com launched its Black Friday Deals Store on Nov. 1, a full 24 days before actual Black Friday. Consumers seem to have already redefined “holiday shopping season,” with Narvar tracking pages showing 30 percent higher clickthrough…

SMBs Decrease Shipping Costs With Automation Platform
December 22, 2016 at 10:04 am

It’s hard for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to keep up with the likes of Amazon.com, especially when it comes to shipping. The e-commerce powerhouse is constantly shaking up the shipping industry — from standard two-day shipping for Prime members to delivering packages via drones to a new Uber-like app for its freight and delivery…

How to Drive CX With Shipping
December 21, 2016 at 9:24 am

The 24/7 nature of online shopping is both good and bad. On one hand, as retailers, you reap the rewards of incoming revenue around the clock — from anyone, anywhere, anytime, unfettered by opening and closing times. On the other hand, when orders escalate at peak periods, you need to fulfill and ship them out…

Amazon Secretly Working on ‘Uber for Trucking’ App
December 20, 2016 at 11:47 am

Amazon.com is building an app that matches truck drivers with shippers, a new service that would deepen its presence in the $800 billion trucking industry, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told Business Insider. The app, scheduled to launch next summer, is designed to make it easier for truck drivers to find shippers that…

Amazon Pilots Warn of Possible Late Holiday Deliveries
December 19, 2016 at 11:58 am

Union pilots who fly products for Amazon.com are taking concerns about pay, working conditions and staffing shortages directly to online shoppers with a digital marketing campaign that suggests the e-tailer may struggle to deliver holiday gifts on time. The union began running advertisements on Facebook and Google last week, targeting Amazon customers. If clicked on,…

1,000-Plus Retailers Participating in Free Shipping Day
December 16, 2016 at 11:15 am

Today is Free Shipping Day, and more than a thousand retailers are participating. Free Shipping Day was started in 2007, and is a one-day, online-shopping event in which thousands of participating retailers offer free shipping and guaranteed delivery by Christmas Eve. Big-name retailers are taking part this year, including J.C. Penney, Target, Neiman Marcus and…

UPS, FedEx Struggling to Keep Up With Holiday Volume
December 14, 2016 at 11:58 am

It's only halfway through December and UPS and FedEx are already having a hard time keeping up with the holiday season. Shipping volumes have blown past expectations, delaying the delivery of some of the millions of orders customers have placed online since Thanksgiving. The Consumerist reports UPS had been expecting to handle a record 700…

Wal-Mart Expanding Delivery Options for Last-Minute Shoppers
December 13, 2016 at 9:43 am

With less than two weeks until Christmas, Wal-Mart is looking to be the go-to shopping destination for both in-store and online procrastinators. The big-box retailer is offering free in-store pickup of online orders placed by 6 p.m. local time on Dec. 23, and has launched a dedicated website for customers to view last-minute gift inventory available…

The Importance of Location on E-Commerce Success 
December 7, 2016 at 9:52 am

To some observers, e-commerce startup Jet.com was taking a gamble when it made the decision to double the size of its headquarters in Hoboken, N.J., and commit to a distribution facility the size of more than 12 football fields in southern New Jersey. However, experts agree that betting on the growth of e-commerce is a sure…

Keep Your Return Policy Focused on Customers This Peak Season
December 6, 2016 at 11:12 am

Online sales continue to grow as a proportion of overall retail sales, and returns are growing at an even faster rate. With the holiday peak season upon us, retailers will need to focus more than ever on handling returns in ways that avoid alienating their customers — and consequently losing future sales. Given the rising…

Great Expectations: Online Shoppers Call the Delivery Shots
December 6, 2016 at 9:37 am

Today’s digital consumers are placing ever greater demands on e-commerce providers to "get delivery right" or lose their business. Indeed, delivery is now a key differentiating factor that has a significant impact on consumer online purchasing decisions. According to the findings of the recent MetaPack 2016 State of E-Commerce Delivery Consumer Research Report, 61 percent…

Retail SMBs: Making it in the Omnichannel Big Leagues
November 23, 2016 at 10:19 am

With Black Friday in two days, the holiday season fast approaching and e-commerce exploding around the globe, opportunities for small-to-medium businesses (SMBs) in the retail industry are skyrocketing — and the rules of the game are changing. Cloud-based e-commerce and enterprise resource planning (ERP) applications are lowering the barrier to entry, while mobile technology is…

Pilot Strike Could Disrupt Amazon's Holiday Deliveries
November 23, 2016 at 9:44 am

A pilot strike is threatening to ground flights carrying cargo for Amazon.com during the busy holiday season. About 250 pilots employed by ABX Air, a subsidiary of Air Transport Services Group, went on strike Tuesday morning to protest what they say are staffing shortages. Now Amazon and shipping company DHL Worldwide Express, which are both customers of…