Retail eCommerce Spending Continues Double-Digit Growth

Do you sell things online? Yes? Great, cause I have some terrific news for you. Online retail spending is up 17% year-over-year. comScore says that in Q1 2012 alone, online retail spending hit $44.3 billion.

It’s weird, everyday I hear people talking about the bad economy and how it’s killing businesses but here’s online retail showing double-digit growth for the sixth consecutive quarter.

Scan this chart and feel good about yourself:

Now, if I was a glass half empty person (hush, you), I could say that it’s a nice rise since 2007 but not phenomenal. But when you look at the slump in 2008 – 2009, then the rise after that, it’s very uplifting. Don’t you think?

comScore’s Gian Fulgoni agrees with me;

Social Gaming is Down with Women but Up with Seniors

Social gaming has been a hot spot for developers for awhile now, but a new study by Frank N. Magid Associates shows that their primary demographic is slipping.

While men rule the game controller at home, it’s always been women who led the charge online. And it’s been a heck of a charge, 81 million people play a social game once a day and total social gaming revenue for the year is expected to top 1,323 million.

The new numbers from Magid show a drop in the female demographic:

  • Females age 12-17 down from 54% in 2011
  • Females 25-44 down from 40% in 2011

Those are roller coaster-sized drops and though there’s been an increase in social gaming with seniors, their rise doesn’t make up for the loss.

Kit Kat Offers Fans in Singapore a Social Media Break

Kit Kat is famous for their “give me a break” slogan and now they’re using it to give their fans in Singapore a much needed break from social media!

According to the Kit Kat Social Break website, 50% of 19-26 year olds in China, Singapore and US say keeping up social media is too time consuming and stressful. They say that they feel pressured to be in constant contact and guilty if they don’t respond right away to social media messages.

The solution? Kit Kat’s Social Break widget. The widget helps the user keep up on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. The Facebook portion automatically “likes” any photos or updates that are tagged with your name. The Twitter helper automatically replies to Tweets with a relevant response randomly chosen from a list. The LinkedIn helper auto shares posts your contacts have shared. Says the copy: Now it is possible to seem intelligent without even lifting a finger.

Did Facebook Cause the Social Reader Decline? Did Users? Does it Matter?

Making the top ten list is a good thing except when when it’s the top ten list of losers. The Washington Post and The Guardian social reader apps both took a big hit this week and many are wondering if it’s a sign of things to come.

The numbers come from AppData, a website that monitors the health of Facebook and iOS apps. They caused a stir this week when they reported a 46% drop in monthly usage for The Washington Post and a 43% drop for The Guardian. Immediately, tech outlets jumped in with explanations for this horrendous turn around.

 BuzzFeed suggested that the collapse was due to the haters finally getting their way.

Apps Take up 4 Out of Every 5 Mobile Media Minutes

Do you remember when phones couldn’t do anything but make phone calls? With every passing month, we’re adding more and more functionality to our mobile phones and it’s good for everybody’s business. Games, shopping, directions, news — we can even have our phones nag us when we forget to do something. About the only thing our phones can’t do is transport us to another location. . . someday. .  . someday.

In the meantime, it’s apps that are occupying our mobile minutes. 82% of our media time is spent with these mini-programs and there’s no end in sight.

comScore put together a list of the top apps and I have to say, I was surprised by a few of them. Take a look.

Are Online Companies Using the Wrong Data to Measure Success?

Everyone knows you need analytics on your website and some people actually pay attention and act on the data they acquire. But digital design agency Extractable says you might be putting all your eggs in the wrong data basket.

Right now, off the top of your head, what would you say is the most common data point for measuring success?

If you said traffic, give yourself a gold star. 66% of the companies Extractable surveyed said they use use traffic numbers as a measure of success. 46% said they use time spent on site but neither one of these is a true indicator of customer satisfaction and neither speaks to conversions.

Mobile Innovation: Commuter Grocery Shopping

Chicagoans spend more than 200 hours a year commuting to and from work. Much of that time is spent mindlessly wandering the transit platforms of the city, waiting for their train to come in. Now, thanks to Peapod, commuters can use that time to grocery shop.

Peapod has turned the busy State and Lake Station Tunnel in Chicago into a virtual grocery store by lining the walls with larger-than-life photos of stocked grocery store shelves.

To order groceries, customers simply use their smartphone to scan the bar codes printed along the wall. 2 boxes of Barilla pasta, 10 Chobani yogurts, a six-pack of Powerade. Then they schedule delivery for the next day or the next week. Groceries can be delivered to their home or to the office. Perfect for the office manager who needs to keep the company break room stocked.