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eBay Solidifies eCommerce Position with a Local Mobile Push

ebay nowWhen eBay launched as a marketplace for one-offs and collectibles, people thought it would fizzle as fast as a dud firework. Eighteen years later, they site has grown to be a major force in the eCommerce world. Still, stocks fell 6% today after the company predicted a sluggish holiday season due in part to that nasty old government shutdown.

Fear not – eBay shall bounce back (and soon I hope because my eBay sales are suffering!) Check out these numbers from yesterday’s conference call:

  • 137 million active accounts globally
  • In Q3, eBay’s core Gross Merchandise Volume grew 12% over the prior year.
  • 2.4 million new users acquired through mobile in Q3.
  • Fixed-priced listings accounted for 71% of GMV globally and more than half of all U.S. transactions shipped free in Q3. (There’s that free shipping thing! Customers love it.)

Americans Shop for the Holidays All Year Long, Europeans Prefer to Wait Until December

christmas greetingsGod Jul! Feliz Navidad! Buone Feste Natalizie!

Doesn’t matter which language you use, it all means the same thing – holiday cha-ching!

Retail-Me-Not took a quick trip around the world to discover the holiday shopping habits of folks in different countries and I found the results quite fascinating.  So, let’s dive into the numbers together.

40% of Americans said they were going to start shopping for December in October. But 22% of bargain hunters said they start shopping on January 1, collecting up gifts all year long in order to spread out the financial burden.

Over in Sweden and the Netherlands, almost half of those surveyed closed their eyes to early shopping, saying they plan on waiting until December to begin their hunt. If you think that’s pushing it, 18% of people in Italy said they’ll be waiting until AFTER the holidays to go shopping. That’s one way to get bargain basement prices on everything!

Samsung Turns Science Fiction into Fact with Their New Smartwatch

What do Dick Tracy, Michael Knight, George Jetson and Maxwell Smart have in common? They all used wristwatch communicators and they’re all featured in a brand new series of commercials for the Samsung Galaxy Smartwatch.

Enjoy this trip down memory lane:

Wearing a communication device on your wrist has been a dream since the days of Dick Tracy. We were almost there in the 80′s, with calculator watches and ones you could use to play music or games. Then the cell phone came along and got smaller and smaller and we all forgot about our dream wristwatch. Until now.

Bing Launches Linked-Offers: Use Your Credit Card, Get a Deal

The downside to most coupons is that you have to have them to use them. Logical, I know, but at least a few times a month I end up at a store or restaurant when the coupon for the establishment is at home on my desk. It makes me crazy but Bing is here to help.

Bing is currently testing a new program called Card-Linked offers in Seattle, Washington. The consumer signs up for the program, lists their credit card and debit card numbers, then a deal is automatically applied when they meet the discount conditions.

bing offers linked cardsHere’s a deal for 10% off a meal at Blue Ginger Korean Grill & Sushi in Bellevue. To get this deal, you only have to show up at the restaurant, eat, then pay with your linked card.

Cisco Offers Free WiFi in Return for a Facebook Check-in

Philz-2Facebook and Cisco are going into business together on a project that will help both consumers and business owners. It’s called CMX for Facebook Wi-Fi.

How CMX for Facebook Wi-Fi Works:

-   Consumers connect to the network of a participating business, open their browser on any mobile device or laptop, and a Facebook check-in page appears.

-   After checking in, consumers are directed to the business’ Facebook Page, where they can receive the latest information about the venue.

It’s ingenious.

WiFi is one of those things that wasn’t even on my radar five years ago but now feels like a necessity. Whether I’m at the grocery store, the mall, at a restaurant, I feel the need for free WiFi. It’s how I check prices, download coupons and entertain myself while I’m waiting for my order. Sure, I have a data plan on my phone but 3G often leaves me high and dry. I’d trade a check-in for a WiFi connection without hesitation.

74 Percent of Millennials Won’t Share Social Deals. How Do You Reach Them? Go Mobile

millennials on mobileThere are 86 million Millennials (age 18-34) in the US and they have money to spend this holiday season. Only trouble is, traditional holiday advertising doesn’t work for this group, so if you want to reach them, you’re going to have to go mobile.

Campaigner, an email marketing company, surveyed a whole bunch of consumers then dug out all of the responses that came from Millennials and put that info into a jazzy infographic.

For those who prefer words to pictures, I’ll summarize the results.

It begins with mobile:

67% of all millennials check email on their mobile phone.

When you look only at mobile device owners, that’s 9 out of 10.

Here’s the good news / bad news:

Which Would You Rather Have? A $250 Discount or a $200 Gift Card?

report-preference-web01You’re about to buy a new car. You can have a $250 discount off the price or a $200 Visa gift card. Which would you choose?

If  you’re like most people, you’d choose the gift card. The new Parago 2013 Shopper Reward Preference Study shows that people are two times as likely to pick the lower, gift card reward rather than the higher discount. Value wise, it’s a bad choice but in this case it’s about perception.

You won’t even notice a $250 savings on the total price of your car, but you’ll feel richer when you go to spend that $200 gift card at Target. Plus, spending found money is a whole lot more fun than saving it.