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52 Percent of Customers Have Taken Their Business Elsewhere: But Why?

customers are pickyIf you didn’t have a competitor in this world, you could afford to be out of stock, leave broken links on your website and provide poor customer service. But here’s the thing — 95% of the time customers do have another option. They can type a new web address, drive down the street, or switch service providers (what a pain, but we’ll do it!).

Redwood Software conducted a survey to find out what it is that makes consumers want to take their business elsewhere and it was the little things that added up to big problems.

The one thing that irks customers more than anything else (61%) is having to repeat personal information to a human on the phone after dealing with an automated machine. As far as I’m concerned, that machine is a big part of the problem in the first place. Instead of helping people move through the queue faster, all it does is aggravate. (Human! Operator! Person! Help!)

Shoppers Still Lean Toward Flowers for Mother’s Day [Infographic]

Mother’s Day accounts for one-fourth of the floral purchases made for holidays. According to the Society of American Florists, more than a third (38%) of adults (43% of men; 34% of women) bought flowers or plants as gifts for Mother’s Day 2012. PriceGrabber says this trend will hold true as 40% of consumers plan to buy flowers to honor mom.

Must be scary for florists, knowing that so much of your income depends on such a short window.

PriceGrabber put together this lovely infographic to show us how Mother’s Day is likely to go in 2013:

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Most consumers are looking to spend under $100 on mom and I’ll try not to take that as a measure of worth.

Fab Gives Up the Flash In Hopes of Bringing in More Cash

fab androidImagine if Ikea and Amazon got together and had a baby – that would be Fab.com.

Two years ago, founder Jason Goldberg launched Fabulis, a social media network for gay men. In June 2011, he and his partner tossed that idea, shortened the name and came back as a flash sale site with the emphasis on quirky housewares. As Fab.com, they raised over $105 million in start-up capital on a company valued at $600 million. Not bad.

Some would be worried about the short-term, wide swing, but not Goldberg.

“I tell start-ups that if you can’t figure out something in a year, it won’t work. You can’t iterate forever.”

Fast forward to April 2013 and Goldberg is taking his own advice again but at least this time, the shift is a little more subtle.

Who Will Claim the Throne in the Game of Local Commerce? (Infographic)

throne of commerceI spend a good portion of my day writing about either TV or online marketing. Sometimes those two passions collide. Like today, when I opened my email to find this wild infographic from Matt at 8coupons: Game of Local Commerce 2013.

8coupons is (according to Matt),  “the largest consumer hub and b2b platform for local deals with hundreds of content and distribution partners.” Pop in your zip code and you’ll see a neatly composed list of everything from all the major daily deal sites, flash deal sites and  sites that specialize in local coupons such as Restaurant.com.

Will the Internet Sales Tax Bill Help or Hurt the Small Business Retailer?

585040_business_buttonsPresident Obama on Monday, said that the proposed Marketplace Fairness Act, which would require online retailers to collect sales tax, “will level the playing field for local small business retailers that are in competition every day with large out-of-state online companies.”

Far be it for me to disagree with the President, but I don’t see it.

Let’s take this step-by-step. Brick and mortar stores say they’re going out of business because people are choosing to buy online instead of in their store. I believe this is true. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Amazon helped put Borders out of business.

91% of Moms Use Social Media Regularly: If Family Isn’t In, They’re Out

1161775_proud_motherIf you’re reading this, you probably already know that moms spend a lot of time on social media. But did you know that activity has increased by 20% in just three years.

According to BabyCenter’s 2013 Social Mom Report, 91% of moms now check-in with a social media network on a regular basis. Social media is such an important key to staying in touch that 22% of moms said “if friends or family don’t participate in social media, they are not as much a part of their lives.”

Wow, cold. But I have to admit, I know more about my two siblings who post regularly to Facebook than the one that doesn’t. (Not proud of that fact, but I’m being honest here.)

iPhone Users Do More Virtual Shopping Than Android Users

ebay appIt’s no secret that I’m an iPhone fan and I often get a lot of flack from commenters regarding my obvious bias. But I can’t help it when the numbers simply go my way. Like this set of numbers from media and marketing research firm Arbitron:

A greater percentage of iPhone users (67.5 percent) use mobile apps for commerce compared to Android users (43.9 percent).

iPhone users went on an average of 35 virtual shopping trips in a month, while Android users only went shopping 29.5 times.

In addition, iPhone users spent more time using mobile commerce apps (105.3 minutes/month vs. 87.6 minutes/month).