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Top 2022 resources on service

Best service resource in 2022.
Learn more about service to improve your e-commerce strategy.

  • 20 Top Internet Service Providers in 2022 - Since 2014 we've published an occasional rundown of internet service providers, listing prices, download speed, data caps, and more. Here's our all-new 2022 installment.
    Topics: data, internet, cable, dsl, states, service, fiber, offers, plans, mbps, providers, month.
  • 24 Streaming Sites for Movies, TV, Sports, News, More - Even online merchants need a little distraction. And with the plethora of online streaming services available these days, it's easier than ever to access exceptional entertainment. Here is a list of streaming sites for movies and TV series.
    Topics: price, offers, service, sites, shows, free, content, live, movies, streaming, tv.
  • 26% of Brits use food/drink subscription box service - Subscription box services are becoming increasingly popular in the United Kingdom. Driven by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and associated lockdowns more and more Brits have signed up for one or more subscription box services. Especially food, drink, recipe boxes and male grooming drive the growth in the subscription… Continue reading
    Topics: subscription, box, euros, service, food, boxes, brits, billion, united, fooddrink, kingdom, market, services.
  • 27 Mission and Vision Statement Examples That Will Inspire Your Buyers - Think about the brands you purchase from over and over. Why do you choose to buy products and or services from them even when cheaper options exist?
    Topics: vision, statement, companys, statements, buyers, company, mission, customers, brand, examples, inspire, values, service.
  • 5 Ways iPaaS Tools Can Increase Employee Satisfaction - Look at any business and you will likely see customer care professionals on the frontline. Whether they are in customer service or account management, these people set customers up for success, keep them happy in the long term, and make vital contributions to the business's sustainability.
    Topics: pain, customers, customer, service, satisfaction, ipaas, teams, experience, employee, ways, multiple, points, increase, tools, data.
  • 5 Ways to Provide a Positive Customer Experience in Ecommerce - Today, consumers have many online shopping options to choose from, making the customer experience a key competitive differentiator for ecommerce companies.
    Topics: provide, customer, shopping, service, ways, mobile, experience, shoppers, online, ecommerce, positive, companies, consumers.
  • 6 Steps to Build a Single Customer View & Improve Customer Experience - Ever see those cool 360-degree cameras on red carpets at award shows?
    Topics: build, better, experience, governance, improve, customer, jazmyn, data, view, brand, steps, service, process, single.
  • 99 eCommerce Acronyms - If you've ever found yourself scratching your head at a 3-letter acronym in an ecommerce related article or document, this post is for you. We've compiled 99 of the most common 3 letter acronyms you'll find in online business, from a wide range of functions including IT, marketing, web development, SEO, web analytics, web design and logistics. Roll over any acronym to see its title, or click its link to see a full definition. Or quiz yourself, and see how many of these acronyms you know off the top of your head! 3PL3rd Party Logistics AOVAverage Order Value APIApplication Programming Interface B2BBusiness-to-Business B2CBusiness-to-Consumer B2EBusiness-to-Employee BOMBill of Materials BPABusiness Process Automation BPMBusiness Process Management CDNContent Delivery Network CMSContent Management System CODCash on Delivery CPACost Per Action CPCCost Per Click CPICost Per Impression CPMCost Per Mille CRMCustomer Relationship Management CROConversion Rate Optimization CSCCard Security Code CSEComparison Shopping Engine CSRCustomer Service Representative CSSCascading Style Sheets CTRClick Through Rate CVCCard Verification Code CVVCard Verification Value DFOData Feed Optimization DIMDimensional Weight DNSDomain Name System DOMDocument Object Model DTPDays to Purchase EAIEnterprise Application Integration EDIElectronic Data Interchange ERPEnterprise Resource Planning FAK Freight All Kinds FAQFrequently Asked Questions FTPFile Transfer Protocol FUDFear, Uncertainty and Doubt HCIHuman Computer Interaction ISPInternet Service Providers KPIKey Performance Indicator LPOLanding Page Optimization LSALatent Symantic Analysis LSILatent Symantic Indexing LTLLess Than Truckload LTVLifetime Value MMSMultimedia Messaging Service MP3MPEG-1 Audio Layer-3 MVTMultivariate Testing NLPNatural Language Processing OOSOut of Stock OPMOutsourced Program Management ORMOnline Reputation Management PCIPayment Card Industry PHPHypertext Preprocessor PIMProduct Information Management POSPoint of Sale Terminal PPCPay Per Click QSAQualified Security Assessor RDFResource Description Framework REPRobots Exclusion Protocol RFIRequest for Information RFPRequest for Proposal RFQRequest for Quotation RFTRequest for Tender RIARich Internet Application ROIReturn on Investment RSSRich Site Summary SASStatistical Analysis System SEMSearch Engine Marketing SEOSearch Engine Optimization SKUStock-keeping Unit SLAService Level Agreement SLR SMOSocial Media Optimization SMSShort Message Service SOAService Oriented Architecture SOWStatement of Work SSIServer Side Includes SSLSecure Sockets Layer TCOTotal Cost of Ownership TLDTop Level Domain TLSTransport Layer Security TOSTerms of Service TPLThird-Party Logistics UCEUnsolicited Commercial Email UGCUser Generated Content USPUnique Selling Proposition UVPUnique Value Proposition VARValue Added Reseller VATValue Added Tax VTPVisits to Purchase VTRView-Through Rate WAIWeb Accessibility Initiative WAOWeb Analytics Optimization WAPWireless Application Protocol WMLWireless Markup Language WMSWarehouse Management System W3CWorld Wide Web Consortium XMLExtensible Markup Language
    Topics: service, logistics, value, system, rate, management, ecommerce, optimization, acronyms, security, protocol, web.
  • A practical guide to consolidate your business in the digital world - Compared to the United States of America, where 50% of sales are concentrated in two retailers (Amazon and Walmart), e-commerce in Mexico is still a territory that is maturing.
    Topics: world, search, digital, sales, optimization, consider, options, client, practical, good, store, service, business, consolidate, guide.
  • Abu Dhabi-based micromobility operator Fenix launches 10-minute grocery delivery service - United Arab Emirates-based shared micromobility operator Fenix is expanding the use of its electric scooters and back-end logistics to not only move people, but also to move goods. On Tuesday, the company announced the launch of a 10-minute fresh grocery delivery service on Reem Island, a dense, mixed-use development off the coast of Abu Dhabi.  […]
    Topics: shared, launches, island, delivery, fenix, company, abu, fenixs, dhabibased, dhanoa, f10, techcrunch, operator, escooter, grocery, micromobility, service.
  • Amazon Ramps Up Its Own Delivery Service - Amazon Logistics provides shipping services to third-party sellers regardless of the sales channel. The program, called Multi-channel Fulfillment, is available to merchants who use Fulfillment by Amazon.
    Topics: ramps, logistics, shipping, amazon, shipments, delivery, program, mcf, sellers, service, thirdparty.
  • Amazon announces the opening of 400 jobs in Mexico - Job opportunities will be permanently virtual (working from home), with a reduced schedule of 40 hours per week.
    Topics: service, opening, problems, offer, jobs, company, work, internet, job, customer, mexico, amazon, announces.
  • Amazon expands its custom-fit clothing service ‘Made for You’ with athletic tees - Amazon is expanding its experimental custom clothing service, Made for You, which allows shoppers to create clothing designed for their exact body measurements. First launched in December 2020 with casual tees, the retailer is now adding athletic shirts that can be customized in close to 50 different ways by selecting from different fit options, necklines, […]
    Topics: clothing, tees, techcrunch, customers, data, measurements, fit, expands, service, athletic, body, technology, shoppers, customfit, amazon.
  • Amazon expands same-day Prime delivery to 6 more US cities - Amazon announced this morning it’s expanding its faster, same-day delivery service to half a dozen more U.S. cities. The service, which the retailer has been working to make same-day delivery even faster over the past year, now offers consumers in a number of markets the ability to shop up to 3 million items on Amazon.com, […]
    Topics: customers, prime, delivery, sameday, placed, service, arrive, markets, orders, expands, techcrunch, amazon, cities.
  • Amazon, Walmart and the Epic Battle for Consumer Spending - Amazon is adding brick-and-mortar locations. Walmart is beefing up its online tools. It's a massive battle of two retail titans. We compare their operations and strategies in the historic competition for consumer spending.
    Topics: workers, service, walmart, amazon, battle, consumer, delivery, hourly, epic, stores, spending, online, customers.
  • Arive raises $20M for an instant delivery service beyond groceries and essentials - Instant purchase and delivery of food and other essentials was one of the big bubbles of opportunity in the world of e-commerce in the last year, with dozens of startups big and small emerging and scooping up funding to build out businesses to bring items like groceries, toilet paper and Tylenol to people’s doors in […]
    Topics: capital, startups, raises, model, groceries, 20m, delivery, items, company, essentials, online, service, techcrunch, instant, arive.
  • Best eCommerce Search Engine Providers - With exponential growth in global eCommerce sales, it’s mission-critical to offer the best solutions for your customers’ experience. The numbers tell us just last year retail eCommerce sales estimated $4.9 trillion, with forecasted growth by as much as 50% to 7.4 trillion by 2025. How fast can your customers find exactly what they’re looking for with minimal effort, plus the valuable insights gleaned from that search into your customers’ behavior. Mobile optimization plays heavily into how your customer searches, as well as synonym results and autocorrect, with the goal to help to your customer zero in quickly on what they’re looking for, or nudge them towards results if their search is non-specific. Site search capabilities go well beyond a bar at the top of your site. Think of site search is an engine fueling your customer experiences. It will inform and transform your digital commerce journey. You’ll want to look at a few considerations and common terms as you evaluate site search vendors: Scalability – your eCommerce solution must weather the unpredictable nature of an online marketplace. Your system must manage the highs of traffic and data without downtime and a total reliance on an IT team Faceted Navigation and Filters – visual cue to narrow down search functions by the desired category such price, size, color, etc. Natural Language Processing (NLP) – allows for brand name recognition or other identifiers in a product set so your customers don’t have to be exact in their search, yet still land on the desired result Zero Results – a fix to queries that come up short to reduce the dreaded bounce rates Artificial Intelligence – a significant driver in the future of eCommerce. AI is behind the highly personalized experiences your customer's demand Just like any partner in your eCommerce solution, a search vendor needs to align with your business needs and goals and integrate well with your existing system. Interested in Learning More About Elastic Path Commerce Cloud? Launch and optimize innovative experiences fast, with a modern, headless, SaaS, API-first, & microservices-based commerce platform. See the Future of eCommerce Algolia Headquarters: San Francisco, CA Website: algolia.com Overview: With a search as a service model, their product indexes clients' sites and so the search task is far simpler. The benefits include an easy implementation and the ability to make changes quickly as needed. Algolia is known for their expertise in advanced search functionality especially useful for catalog management. Additional Resource: Elastic Path teamed up with Algolia and Contentful for an on-demand webinar on navigating and overcoming the barriers to the Composable Commerce approach. The presentation includes real life use cases and a Q&A.   AddSearch Headquarters: Helsinki, Finland Website: addsearch.com Overview: AddSearch customers report back the flexibility and easy integration of the product, and point to its cost-effectiveness and exceptional customer service for small business users.   Azure Cognitive Website: azure.microsoft.com Azure Cognitive Search is the only cloud search service with built-in AI capabilities that enrich all types of information to easily identify and explore relevant content at scale. Azure Cognitive Search service, provides indexing and query engine, persistent storage of search indexes that brands create and manage, and a query language for composing simple to complex queries. Bloomreach Headquarters: Mountain View, CA Website: bloomreach.com With applications for content management, site search, page management, SEO optimization and role-based analytics, Bloomreach is a central location for all players who manage customer experience to come together and intelligently drive business outcomes. Coveo Headquarters: Quebec, Canada Website: coveo.com Overview: Coveo touts search optimization for eCommerce applications, websites, and workplace enablement. Their solutions plug into any system regardless of tech stack; you can start from scratch or use their pre-built integrations. They score well with users for their analytics capabilities. Google Cloud Search Headquarters: Mountain View, CA Website: cloud.google.com Overview: Well-known market leader in search function. Using the powerful searching capabilities of Google, users are immediately able to enter their queries, look for contents and answers, and view search suggestions. Handshake by Perficient Website: perficient.com Handshake is a modern Search Connector Framework that takes the guesswork out of getting content to index. Handshake for Elastic Path gives users complete control over the flow of data from Elastic Path to multiple search targets, securely and flexibly. LucidWorks Headquarters: San Francisco, CA Website: lucidworks.com Overview: Founded in 2008, LucidWorks initially provided support and consulting services for the Apache Lucene/Solr open-source search project; they are currently the largest supporter of open-source search industry-wide. They offer search, discovery, and analytics solutions from two platform products. Sinequa Headquarters: New York, NY Website: sinequa.com Overview: Sinequa’s search optimization expertise comes from large organizations with complex information layers such has government agencies. They score well in the marketplace for a smooth integration process. Yext Headquarters: New York, NY Website: yext.com Overview: Yext offers customized search and discovery experiences based on natural language understanding and AI. Their real-time search analytics provide even more insight into how users are searching and what questions they’re asking. They are known in the market for their multi-format support capabilities. Site Search Informs the Journey – So What’s Next? With so many players in the market, you’ll need to evaluate who best works for you as far as your digital maturity, and how you’ve mapped out your digital commerce metrics and goals. Bear in mind how crucial the omnichannel experience is for the future of eCommerce. Meeting the customer where they are across multiple touchpoints with as little friction and effort as possible is the future and the now of digital commerce. A robust and intuitive search functionality is just the tip of the iceberg. For more information and insights on how to begin your eCommerce transformation, check out Elastic Path’s Replatforming Guide, or see what’s new in our Resource Library.
    Topics: customers, commerce, ecommerce, best, search, elastic, users, path, site, providers, engine, customer, service.
  • Byrd raises $19M to expand Amazon-style fulfillment and logistics to more e-commerce merchants in Europe - E-commerce in Europe is set to grow 30% percent this year, with the online shopping surge that started at the rise of Covid-19 showing little sign of abating. Today, a startup that’s building infrastructure in the region to help merchants fill and deliver those orders — and present an alternative to using Amazon for fulfillment […]
    Topics: service, raises, companies, fulfillment, logistics, ecommerce, customers, amazon, retailers, byrd, merchants, million, techcrunch, europe, expand, online, amazonstyle.
  • Cabify bolts on grocery deliveries in Spain with Lola Market tie-up - Spanish ride-hailing unicorn Cabify is getting into grocery deliveries as it looks to add another string to its multimodal mobility and urban utility bow. It announced the addition of a “Super” option in its app today — which is available for users in nine cities in its home market, namely: A Coruña, Alicante, Barcelona, Madrid, […]
    Topics: delivery, cabify, tieup, deliveries, ridehailing, service, looks, super, bolts, spain, techcrunch, grocery, lola, market, users.
  • Cajoo raises $40 million for its instant grocery delivery service - French startup Cajoo is raising some money in order to compete more aggressively in the new and highly competitive category of food delivery companies. Interestingly, the lead investor in today’s funding round is Carrefour, the supermarket giant. Headline (formerly e.ventures) is also participating in the round as well as existing investors Frst and XAnge. Carrefour’s […]
    Topics: capoul, service, grocery, category, french, instant, million, techcrunch, cajoo, company, raises, market, henri, players, products, delivery.
  • - Coinbase Commerce is a merchant payment solution that helps online businesses accept cryptocurrency payments. The platform leverages blockchain technology in order to facilitate digital asset payments for its customers. Coinbase Commerce is available to an array of business sectors and… Continue reading Coinbase Commerce Review (Sep 2021): Everything You Need to Know
    Topics: sep, coinbase, review, payment, account, payments, customers, cryptocurrency, commerce, using, know, wallet, service, need.
  • Colombia’s Merqueo bags $50M to expand its online grocery delivery service across Latin America - Merqueo offers more than 8,000 products, including fresh foods, packaged goods, home essentials, beverages and frozen products. It currently operates in more than 25 cities and has over 600,000 users.
    Topics: bags, colombias, america, techcrunch, million, expand, service, online, market, merqueo, delivery, stores, latin, mcallister, grocery.
  • Coolblue opens first physical store in Germany - Dutch omnichannel retailer Coolblue will open its first physical store in Germany at the end of this year. The white goods and electronics retailer will also open five more stores in the Netherlands and Belgium this year. When the new stores have been opened, Coolblue will have 22 physical stores… Continue reading
    Topics: germany, open, opens, store, coolblue, stores, whitepaper, payment, try, service, physical.
  • Customer Service Is the New Upsell - If your customers aren't satisfied with their experience, you won't be able to convert new customers. Here's a deep dive into how to turn ecommerce expectations into guaranteed sales.
    Topics: site, purchase, upsell, ecommerce, returning, customer, help, service, offer, sales, customers, customerservice.
  • Defining Influencers and Creators Requires a Venn Diagram - The difference between a "social media influencer" and an online "creator" may be no difference at all. Defining these terms has more to do with opinion or perspective than it does actual divergence.
    Topics: content, diagram, service, product, influencers, sinkwitz, creators, influencer, venn, defining, creator, difference, audience, requires.
  • Delivery Hero launches Foodpanda app in Germany - Delivery Hero has launched its delivery app in Germany. Under the brand Foondpanda, the app now covers four districts of the German capital of Berlin. The launch follows after testing the service and scaling it up gradually. Delivery Hero has two subsidiaries in Germany: Foodpanda (acquired in 2016) and Pandamarkets.… Continue reading
    Topics: food, germany, restaurants, app, delivery, quick, service, launches, foodpanda, local, hero.
  • Do you want to grow your online sales? CanastaRosa helps you through MyStore - This tool will allow you to reach 35 million customers through WhatsApp, social networks and the most important marketplaces in Latin America.
    Topics: grow, canastarosa, sell, helps, online, sales, canasta, withholdings, entrepreneurs, whatsapp, platform, rosa, mystore, service.
  • Ecommerce Product Releases: February 15, 2022 - Twice a month we publish a rundown of new products and services that could interest merchants. This installment includes mobile payments, B2B ecommerce, augmented reality, and more.
    Topics: pay, b2b, tap, try, video, live, ecommerce, platform, announced, releases, service, product.
  • Ecommerce Product Releases: May 17, 2022 - This installment of "Ecommerce Product Releases," our twice-monthly rundown of new services that could help merchants, includes digital currencies, checkout tools, freight logistics, and more.
    Topics: digital, service, releases, product, returns, shipping, merchants, instagram, fulfillment, customer, ecommerce, platform.
  • Ecommerce Product Releases: November 30, 2021 - Here is a list of product releases and updates for late November from companies that offer services to online merchants. There are updates on live-stream shopping, holiday shipping, drone deliveries, direct-to-consumer marketing, buy-now pay-later services, cloud training, and sustainable ecommerce.
    Topics: services, cloud, program, aws, service, free, releases, platform, network, customer, merchants, product, ecommerce.
  • Egypt’s Mylerz raises $9.6M for its e-commerce fulfillment service, eyes Africa-wide growth - Mylerz, a Cairo-based e-commerce fulfillment startup, plans to enter three new markets in North Africa and expand across Egypt over the next three months against the backdrop of the $9.6 million funding it has just secured. The startup also has its eyes on the growing e-commerce market in East Africa, with the long-term goal of […]
    Topics: techcrunch, egypts, ecommerce, service, africawide, egypt, africa, eyes, delivery, partners, cash, startup, partner, mylerz, growth, raises, fulfillment, logistics.
  • Ensuring Quality in Elastic Path Commerce Cloud - At Elastic Path, having a quality mindset is the key to providing our customers with the best commerce experience. Elastic Path Commerce Cloud is a composable, microservices-based commerce solution which offers simple, flexible, and powerful APIs. Microservice architecture means Elastic Path Commerce Cloud has a set of loosely coupled, collaborating services. Each service has its own responsibility. However, a set of services need to collaborate to fulfill the needs in most user journeys. For example, a simple user journey where a shopper wants to checkout will require the authentication service for identifying the shopper, catalog service to serve the products plus the cart, orders, inventory, and payment services for checkout. To ensure this journey is working consistently every day after every release, we need thorough testing strategy in place. The following will highlight how testing is done in our software development lifecycle. How do we ensure quality in Elastic Path Commerce Cloud? The engineering team at Elastic Path has defined a test pyramid, inspired by the work of Martin Fowler and Chris Richardson, that follows industry best practices. The pyramid represents the complexity and speed of test execution. From bottom to top, tests at the bottom layer (e.g., Unit Tests) are more isolated (less complex) and faster (speed). The tests at the top (e.g., end-to-end tests) are more complicated in terms of setup and slower because they require a fully deployed environment and various configurations of the software. The diagram on the right describes the service and its relationship to the platform. A service is within a blue box whereas the purple boundary is a group of services integrated together (a deployed functional environment). Test Overview What are the different types of tests we run to ensure quality? Unit Tests Unit tests are the lowest level of the tests. They are the most fundamental layer, focused on a class and functional methods. Unit tests provide the fastest feedback and have minimal dependencies on other parts of the service because they do not require a deployed service. The tests are mostly written in the same language as the production code. The goal is to ensure the business logic within a class and method is tested both positively and negatively. Component Tests Component Tests test a service in isolation from other services. The goal is to ensure the service responsibilities are as expected. The tests are on API level. For example, a POST request to add items to cart is tested by providing the required headers and requested body. Then the success response is validated to ensure the returned status code and body has the right information. We use Cucumber for the test cases and the backing code is in Typescript or Go, depending on the service. The test cases cover all the business requirements that a service is responsible for, including data persistence and event processing. In addition, integration tests with database and messaging are also implemented here. There are test cases to ensure data persistence between the business logic and database. There are also test cases to ensure events are emitted for any API requests that need to emit certain events for consumers to consume. This level of test requires the service and the dependencies (database, message broker) to be running. Contract Tests These tests ensure that service to service communication works as services, often owned by different teams, evolve independently. When a service (consumer) talks to the other service (provider), there is a Contract between them. The consumer expects the provider to provide an agreed response. For example, if a specific field in the provider response (e.g., customer_name) is changed (e.g., to shopper_name), this will break the consumer as it expects customer_name. In this case, it is a breaking change and can impact our customers. We adopt Pactflow as our contract testing broker. The contracts are stored in the Pactflow server. Both provider and consumer services will download the contracts and verify if the contract is still valid during the test run. This gives us confidence in communication between the paired services. End-to-End Tests The goal of these tests is to ensure that services are configured and work correctly in a deployed environment. Our end-to-end tests are written from an end user's perspective. We follow BDD and write tests in Cucumber. Each test scenario describes an end-user's journey when using the public APIs. We have two distinct types of user profiles - a seller or store admin, and the buyer or shopper. Each user profile has different journeys. For example, a seller has journeys like catalog management, promotions management, and orders management. While the shopper has journeys like browsing, registration, and checkout. The tests are executed every time there is a new deployment from any service code changes. This is to ensure the commerce experience is still performing as expected. Any failures stop further release process. In addition, we have scheduled jobs that run the tests against the production environments to ensure the production has no outage or unexpected behaviors. UI Tests We have Commerce Manager which is a web-based user interface that allows business users to manage their stores. The UI tests ensure that each page and their components are functioning as expected. Store admin journeys such as creating products, managing catalog, price books, promotions, orders, and other store settings need to be tested. The test scenarios are written in Cucumber format for readability and the implementation is SeleniumJS. The test uses Chrome driver to simulate the browser and selenium commands to execute the browser interactions (e.g., clicking on buttons). UI testing is usually the slowest of the tests. We utilize the parallel testing feature which allows us to run multiple tests at one time. This significantly cut down our test cycles. To achieve parallel testing, tests are designed to be isolated from each other. This allows us to run any single test at any time without dependencies. Summary At Elastic Path, our entire team is committed to quality. The Test Pyramid outlined above is the guideline that our engineering team follows to ensure our customers have a reliable platform to run their businesses. All tests are run in a continuous delivery pipeline. This gives us confidence in the quality of changes being released to production for Elastic Path Commerce Cloud. Stay tuned for future blog posts where we will talk about the non-functional testing we do for performance and security.
    Topics: service, ensure, ensuring, run, path, commerce, cloud, tests, testing, quality, elastic, test, services.
  • Etsy opened offices in Mexico: Here are 21 strategies to provide a first class service - Good customer service requires more than just saying 'thank you' to your online shoppers.
    Topics: etsy, customers, information, mexico, address, service, opened, order, shipping, class, provide, important, questions, business, strategies, customer, store, offices.
  • Features vs. Benefits: A Crash Course on Proper Messaging - Great marketing copy doesn’t just sell a product, it builds a connection with the audience. The beauty of proper messaging is that by communicating either the benefits or features of your product or service, you can tell customers what they need to know in a clever, concise way.
    Topics: messaging, features, audience, crash, benefits, proper, ad, course, vs, energy, customers, service, does, marketing, product.
  • Flytrex raises $40M to build its drone-based delivery service across suburbs in the US - Flytrex, the Israeli startup working with Walmart, Chili’s, and others in North Carolina in pilots for a drone-based delivery service targeting suburban consumers, has picked up $40 million in funding to continue developing its hardware and software, as well as more business partnerships, as it awaits regulatory nods to expand its service to more markets […]
    Topics: north, hardware, bash, flytrex, delivery, customers, suburbs, carolina, build, drones, raises, service, techcrunch, services, dronebased, 40m.
  • Goodcall picks up $4M, Yelp partnership to answer merchant inbound calls - Goodcall’s free cloud-based conversational platform leverages artificial intelligence to manage incoming business phone calls and boost customer service while assisting to other patrons.
    Topics: partnership, summers, merchants, goodcall, answer, phone, techcrunch, inbound, picks, merchant, yelp, calls, businesses, service, 4m, small, ventures.
  • Google sued in Europe for $2.4BN in damages over Shopping antitrust case - Google is being sued in Europe on competition grounds by price comparison service PriceRunner which is seeking at least €2.1 billion (~2.4 billion) in damages. The lawsuit accuses Google of continuing to breach a 2017 European Commission antitrust enforcement order against Google Shopping. As well as fining Google what was — at the time — […]
    Topics: techcrunch, search, damages, google, 24bn, europe, sued, shopping, googles, antitrust, results, commission, comparison, case, service, price, general.
  • Gopuff confirms new $1B cash injection at a $15B valuation to expand its instant grocery delivery service - Gopuff said it plans to use the funding to continue expanding in North America, the U.K. and Europe, among other things.
    Topics: delivery, confirms, service, gopuff, goods, funding, company, billion, valuation, techcrunch, gopuffs, grocery, customers, injection, expand, instant, building.
  • Gopuff officially launches its instant delivery service in France - After launching its service in the U.K. late last year, Gopuff is officially expanding to Europe starting with France. In addition to the Paris area, the instant grocery delivery service is now live in Marseille, Lille and Toulouse. There are more European countries on the company’s road map, such as Spain. For today’s market launch, […]
    Topics: techcrunch, delivery, gola, service, gopuff, local, instant, france, weve, market, customers, launches, europe, officially, working.
  • Gradient, 10xFounders back Zowie’s no-code, e-commerce customer service tool - Customer service tickets tend to fall into the same few buckets — returns, refunds or quality control questions. Not only are these repetitive, but it leaves little time for customer engagement on more complex requests, like relaying information on products or helping a customer find the best product for them. Maja Schaefer and Matt Ciolek, […]
    Topics: ecommerce, nocode, zowies, gradient, service, techcrunch, customer, company, support, questions, 10xfounders, product, sales, tool, zowie, schaefer, looking.
  • Holiday Shopping Fails – 2021 Sales Fall Short - Another holiday shopping cycle bites the dust, and the results are in: nothing for the record books. AdWeek reported lower projections, with the biggest returns projected for Cyber Monday. Amid supply chain issues and a national labor shortage, it seems shoppers made the bulk of purchases earlier in the season to ensure no disappointments on Christmas morning, as retailers offered deep deals as early as October to get a jump on the season. Not surprisingly the most sought-after items include high-definition TVs, next gen smartphones, devices, gaming systems, household appliances, and the latest toys for the kid, or the kid-at-heart, who has everything. A few key numbers and findings: Online sales reached $8.9 billion on Black Friday, slightly below last year, according to data from Adobe Analytics Physical store traffic rose from last year, but still well below pre-pandemic levels Buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) services are on the rise, and in recent months several major retailers now offer the option at point-of-sales both in-store and online Curbside pickup remains steady since the pandemic began, while other shopping behaviors have waned. According to Adobe, curbside services were used in 20% of all online orders placed on Black Friday. For the month of November, curbside services were up 78% from pre-pandemic levels in 2019 And now on with the show… Holiday shopping woes abound in the Twittersphere and among the TikTok nation, with pain points ranging from no inventory to coupon missteps, and overall lackluster shopping experiences. Here are snapshots of a few #fails: When the deal is really anything but: No availability for highly anticipated new product launches on the busiest shopping day of the year is in this shopper’s mind not just a fail, but one of epic proportions:   While some retailers do accept expired paper coupons, in the case of online codes for an on-demand service, it requires an extra step to chat with customer service when the code fails – or when you don’t even get to redemption because the offer is marked with an expired date. Inconsistency on sale models and pricing, whether intended or triggered by a glitch in your inventory system, damages the trust you work so hard to build with your customers. And when you do find that unicorn of a deal, your size seems to be the only dreaded out of stock: While this instance could be chalked up to tough luck, or maybe this shopper has niche taste beyond a 4K Ultra HD TV, a deeper dive could suggest you aren’t listening to what your customers want. Again, glitches can ruin the experience; especially when you’ve been led to believe you are “next in line”… Despite all the inevitable #fails along the way, many shoppers found they got exactly what they were looking for at the right price, either in person or online. I shopped Small Business Saturday by purchasing handmade items from some of my favorite local artists. But even if you didn’t have the best experience, some shoppers dug deep and found a certain amount of humor in the situation: And brutal self-awareness: We can’t forget our Black Friday shoppers who braved the in-store experience, only to find curious merchandizing decisions: (Video Source) And well, at least you aren’t this guy: (Video Source) That’s a wrap on holiday shopping 2021…it turned out to be more of a bear than a bull, one could say. Stay tuned for more insights and trends as we continue to navigate shopping habits in these unprecedented times.
    Topics: holiday, shopping, fall, prepandemic, service, fails, shoppers, sales, black, retailers, online, experience, services, short.
  • How COVID-19 Impacted Customer Service & What's Next [Data + Expert Tips] - We all know the importance of customer service for retaining customers and scaling a business — and it's only increasing in value over time.
    Topics: support, team, tips, reps, pandemic, data, covid19, impacted, told, remote, expert, service, whats, teams, customer, customers.
  • How to Create a Successful Holiday Customer Service Strategy - The holiday season is unlike any other time of year and it’s important that your ecommerce store is ready for…
    Topics: customers, revenue, stressful, need, chat, free, youve, holidays, service, steps, crucial, successful, customer, holiday.
  • How to Integrate SMS into Email Marketing - Many ecommerce brands drive engagement and conversions via text messages But implementing the channel requires caution and sensitivity. We explain in this helpful post.
    Topics: frequency, email, messages, sms, customers, receive, service, text, recipients, integrate, marketing.
  • How to Scale Your Small Business in 6 Steps - Scaling a business sustainably means being prepared for long-term growth. This guide will walk you through how to scale up your business so you always remain in control of your future.More
    Topics: plan, business, means, need, marketing, scaling, pantee, steps, service, right, scale, small.
  • How to Write a Case Study: Bookmarkable Guide & Template - Earning the trust of prospective customers can be a struggle. Before you can even begin to expect to earn their business, you need to demonstrate your ability to deliver on what your product or service promises.
    Topics: customers, write, work, case, product, business, customer, service, study, client, bookmarkable, youre, guide, template.
  • How to Write a Great Value Proposition [5 Top Examples + Template] - Your company’s value proposition is the core of your competitive advantage. It clearly articulates why someone would want to buy from your company instead of a competitor.
    Topics: examples, proposition, products, customers, business, help, product, youll, template, customer, service, write, great, value.
  • India’s Simpl raises $40 million for its buy now, pay later service - Bangalore-based fintech startup Simpl has raised $40 million as it looks to expand its online buy now, pay later service’s offerings in the world’s second-largest market. Valar Ventures and IA Ventures led the six-year-old startup’s Series B round. LFH Ventures and some existing investors also participated in the round, said the startup, which has raised […]
    Topics: service, pay, customers, indias, ecommerce, startup, services, raises, million, checkout, later, ventures, buy, experience, techcrunch, merchants, simpl.
  • Italy fines Amazon $1.3 billion for abusing its market position - Italy’s competition authority announced that it had fined Amazon €1.129 billion, or roughly $1.3 billion at today’s exchange rate. According to the antitrust watchdog, Amazon has abused its dominant market position and pushed third-party sellers to use the company’s logistics service Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). The Italian authority, the Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del […]
    Topics: sellers, gmbh, amazon, techcrunch, position, billion, buy, box, italy, abusing, amazons, woltu, market, fines, service, thirdparty, fba.
  • Jobox is building a bridge between skilled labor, available work - Jobox connects companies with vetted professionals for home service jobs via a marketplace, thus eliminating the need for customers to vet professionals themselves.
    Topics: skilled, building, available, small, techcrunch, repair, jobox, right, company, professionals, funding, sure, labor, work, bridge, million, service.
  • Kitchenful combines meal planning with a grocery concierge service - Meet Kitchenful, a new German startup backed by Y Combinator that wants to make it easier to cook at home by taking care of menu ideas and grocery shopping. The service is currently available in early access in Germany, with a focus on Berlin and Munich. When you sign up to Kitchenful, you first have […]
    Topics: kitchenful, vegetables, review, supermarket, recipes, meal, techcrunch, cofounder, y, grocery, service, concierge, combines, planning, startup.
  • Klarna launches Comparison Shopping Service - Klarna has announced the launch of its new Comparison Shopping Service. This service offers retailers across Europe an increased customer reach. Klarna has also launched a comparison shopping page that offers brands the opportunity to reach browsing consumers with their products. Comparison Shopping Service has been launched in 21 markets… Continue reading
    Topics: launches, reach, service, google, shopping, product, merchants, klarna, customer, retailers, comparison.
  • Klarna launches in Poland - Swedish fintech company Klarna has entered Poland this week with the launch of its ‘buy now, pay later’ service in collaboration with H&M. This is the latest expansion of Klarna, which has been gruadually building its presence in Europe in the last years. Klarna is now officially active in Poland.… Continue reading
    Topics: shop, pay, payments, klarna, option, service, later, poland, study, online, launches.
  • Latvijas Pasts builds home parcel locker network in Latvia - Latvijas Pasts, the state-owned postal service provider from Latvia, has announced it’s building a network of home parcel lockers in Latvia. The network will be open to all logistics service providers and consists of lockers created by Cleveron, an Estonian tech company. The lockers, which will be installed starting next… Continue reading
    Topics: open, locker, latvia, ģērmanis, latvijas, builds, payment, network, customers, parcel, service, pasts, lockers.
  • Little Spoon scoops up $44M to grow its children’s nutrition delivery service - The quest to disrupt the traditional baby food aisle continues as more of today’s parents seek out nutritional food for their children.
    Topics: childrens, company, baby, spoon, service, delivery, 44m, plates, funding, million, grow, nutrition, little, products, parents, food, techcrunch, scoops.
  • Make it Big Podcast: Trends and Predictions for an Unprecedented Holiday Season with Trustpilot - Welcome to The Make it Big Podcast, a bi-weekly audio series about all things ecommerce by BigCommerce. In its 2021…
    Topics: customer, reviews, going, trustpilot, need, review, trends, podcast, unprecedented, holiday, big, youre, season, experience, predictions, service, think.
  • MilkRun lands new capital to deliver farm-fresh groceries - The company offers a recurring subscription, and 50% of every dollar spent goes back to farmers.
    Topics: spark, groceries, techcrunch, farmers, company, subscription, lands, food, service, farmfresh, small, working, milkrun, deliver, capital.
  • No plastic clamshells here: Zero Grocery aims to eliminate unnecessary plastic in grocery delivery - Even small changes made by individuals to reduce plastic waste can add up to a big positive impact on the environment, founder and CEO Zuleyka Strasner said.
    Topics: sustainable, company, service, grocery, eliminate, clamshells, delivery, online, zero, strasner, plastic, techcrunch, unnecessary, aims, million.
  • PayPal makes its ‘Happy Returns’ service free with PayPal Checkout, expands to 5,000+ locations - PayPal is expanding access to the returns service it acquired last year, Happy Returns, by making it available to PayPal Checkout merchants at no extra cost. The payments company said on Monday that merchants would now be able to use the Happy Returns return and exchange portal software free of charge, and it has additionally […]
    Topics: checkout, return, locations, service, techcrunch, merchants, customers, makes, paypal, ulta, happy, expands, returns, free, retail.
  • Potential winners and losers line up as Plaid pushes deeper into payments - So now Plaid says it’s a payments company. It was only a matter of time, really.
    Topics: users, techcrunch, payment, line, winners, plaid, initiation, service, potential, pushes, deeper, losers, transfers, today, payments, ecosystem, tool.
  • Puls Technologies lands $15M to provide on-demand home repair service - The average refrigerator door is opened and closed 20 times per day, but with everyone at home during the pandemic, that rose to over 100 times, sparking an increase in door repair requests.
    Topics: lands, services, service, business, repair, puls, technologies, 15m, technicians, company, million, repairs, warranty, provide, ondemand, techcrunch.
  • SafeBoda bets on super app to boost recovery from pandemic slump - Powered by 25,000 motorcycle taxis at the start of 2020, SafeBoda was at its peak, ferrying thousands of pillion passengers in cities across Uganda and Nigeria. And then the COVID pandemic hit, throwing everything into a spin. Containment measures like work from home directives meant a slump in business, which was worsened by the lockdowns, […]
    Topics: safeboda, app, techcrunch, wallet, slump, motorcycle, pandemic, super, business, recovery, industry, taxi, boost, service, users, riders, bets, services.
  • Sea’s Shopee begins recruiting sellers in India, quietly launches website - Southeast Asian e-commerce giant Shopee, which recently expanded to several Latin American nations, appears to be preparing to launch in another international market: India. The company, owned by Singapore-headquartered Sea, has quietly launched a website for sellers in India, TechCrunch has learned, following a months-long subtle campaign to attract merchants in the South Asian nation. […]
    Topics: seas, india, techcrunch, launch, billion, quietly, southeast, recruiting, service, company, shopee, begins, indian, website, sellers, launches.
  • Sendcloud nabs $177M led by SoftBank to double down on SaaS — shipping as a service - E-commerce has undoubtedly seen a huge boost in growth in the last year and a half of COVID-19 living, with people turning to the web and apps to shop for essentials and not-so-essentials to keep their social distance, and using delivery services to receive their goods rather than picking things up in person. Today, a […]
    Topics: delivery, nabs, 177m, services, ecommerce, way, techcrunch, customers, retailers, market, service, saas, growth, led, softbank, double, shipping, sendcloud.
  • Set up a home beauty business? This is the new trend to undertake - Interest in buying beauty and personal care items online has increased 11% during the pandemic.
    Topics: undertake, delivery, business, set, products, create, way, services, trend, service, sector, beauty, confidence.
  • ShipBlu bags $2.4M for its e-commerce and fulfilment service in Egypt - African e-commerce fulfilment startups backed by Y Combinator seem to be piquing investors’ interest this year for their niche e-commerce play. Summer batch graduate ShipBlu is the latest on that list and confirmed to TechCrunch that it has raised $2.4 million in seed funding. The company, founded by Ali Nasser, Ahmed ElKawass, Abdelrahman Hosny in […]
    Topics: fulfilment, techcrunch, shipblu, 24m, market, service, nasser, delivery, customers, egypt, merchants, company, ecommerce, bags.
  • Shipt’s new feature pairs members with their favorite, 5-star shoppers - Target’s same-day delivery service Shipt is launching a new feature that will pair customers with their favorite shoppers on future orders. This “Preferred Shoppers” feature will be available as a membership-only perk at no extra charge, offering customers what Shipt believes will be a more reliable shopping experience, where more of members’ orders are directed […]
    Topics: order, feature, favorite, preferred, shipt, customers, techcrunch, 5star, shoppers, shopper, experience, orders, members, service, shipts, pairs.
  • Shopify Buys Logistics Company Deliverr - Shopify's acquisition of fulfillment company Deliverr will help it compete with Amazon and will otherwise jumpstart stalled growth.
    Topics: shopify, company, logistics, amazon, fulfillment, buys, inventory, billion, acquisition, service, shopifys, deliverr, merchants.
  • Shopware launches ecommerce VOD service Shopware TV - Ecommerce software provider Shopware has today released a video-on-demand service. The free service, called Shopware TV, offers video content about all things ecommerce. Shopware TV will show both business-relevant information and entertaining videos. There are already two elaborately produced series with up to five episodes available, and more formats will… Continue reading
    Topics: shopware, whitepaper, ecommerce, tv, launches, wants, solutions, service, payment, software, series, vod.
  • Target to add Starbucks orders and returns to its curbside pickup service - Target is preparing a series of changes to make its curbside pickup service called Drive Up more appealing to consumers. The retailer announced on Wednesday it will begin testing an option that will allow customers to add Starbucks orders to their pickup as well as the ability to bring back items they want to return, […]
    Topics: returns, customers, support, stores, techcrunch, add, target, curbside, targets, drive, pickup, starbucks, orders, service.
  • Tech firms face higher levies as Kenya plans to double digital service tax - Kenya plans to double the digital service tax (DST) to 3% beginning July this year, as the government taps the growing online economy to increase its domestic revenues and narrow fiscal deficit. It is expected that the new rates, proposed in the Finance Bill by the country’s Treasury department, will be passed by the lawmakers. […]
    Topics: plans, firms, companies, services, treasury, higher, tech, service, dst, techcrunch, tax, revenues, digital, face, levies, kenya.
  • TechCrunch+ roundup: Startup survival tips, content as a service, leading with transparency - Once investors started shaving value from high-flying stocks, it changed the game for early-stage valuations, says Navin Chaddha, managing partner at Mayfield.
    Topics: survival, roundup, leading, wilhelm, service, private, techcrunch, miller, tips, content, slowing, ron, saas, alex, company, startup, transparency, ecommerce.
  • Text Commerce Is Upfront Permission to Sell - Text commerce is the process of obtaining payment and shipping info from shoppers upfront as well as permission to send offers. The model can solve multiple hurdles for merchants.
    Topics: service, text, wine, shipping, sell, payment, upfront, permission, ecommerce, address, coffee, business, messages, commerce.
  • The 12 Best Free (and Private) Email Accounts and Service Providers of 2022 - You need an email account — whether it’s for networking, job recruitment, downloading resources, transferring files, setting reminders, meeting with colleagues, or something else.
    Topics: inbox, account, gmail, service, mail, private, accounts, feature, emails, free, providers, email, best.
  • The 4 Things You Need to Do to Get (and Keep) Ecommerce Customers - The goal is to show your customers that you are invested in building real bonds with them every step of the way.
    Topics: shopping, strategy, products, customers, things, need, platforms, ecommerce, online, service, product.
  • The Overlooked Benefit of B2B Ecommerce - An oft-overlooked benefit of B2B ecommerce tools is the value to internal sales and customer service teams. Both gain efficiencies from digital tools, resulting in happier customers that spend more money. Ecommerce gives users — internal and external — the ability to help themselves.
    Topics: users, staff, customers, b2b, internal, overlooked, ecommerce, software, service, benefit, sales, platform.
  • The Plain-English Guide to Conjoint Analysis - Sometimes, commercials really get me.
    Topics: plainenglish, conjoint, phone, guide, analysis, service, tool, questions, respondents, survey, product, research.
  • The Top 16 Best Email Marketing Services in 2022 - Email marketing continues to be a critical strategy for marketing (and sales teams) across an array of industries and business types, and an email marketing platform is one of the first additions to a marketer's tool belt — and for good reason.
    Topics: plans, automation, best, marketing, email, campaign, campaigns, emails, services, service, offers, free.
  • The Ultimate Guide to Advertising in 2022 - When you hear the word advertising, what comes to mind? Do you think of banner ads on your favorite website? Those hilarious Super Bowl commercials? The billboards along the highway or posters in the subway stations?
    Topics: advertising, brand, product, ad, guide, service, ads, print, campaign, audience, ultimate, media.
  • The Ultimate Guide to Email Marketing - The first marketing email was sent in 1978, resulted in $13 million in sales, and kicked off what has become one of the most highly used marketing channels even to this day. Given its early beginnings, email isn’t as shiny as some newer channels like messaging and social, but it is an effective way to build an owned audience that gets results.
    Topics: spam, guide, email, data, list, emails, service, youre, send, ultimate, marketing, subscribers.
  • The Ultimate Guide to Service Level Agreements (SLAs) - At many companies, it can feel as if there are 100 miles between sales and marketing. In a recent LinkedIn survey, 60% of global respondents believed that misalignment between sales and marketing could damage financial performance, yet there are a number of disconnects between the teams from strategy to process.
    Topics: slas, agreement, service, sla, goals, ultimate, guide, customer, level, marketing, agreements, leads, sales, goal.
  • The Ultimate Guide to iPaaS (Integration Platform as a Service) - You’ve likely heard of Software as a Service, or SaaS. A SaaS company sells software to a user as a subscription. Along with that subscription, the software company provides technical support, customer service, and upgrade options to maximize their customers' ability to use their software.
    Topics: need, guide, applications, data, ultimate, integration, integrate, software, platform, systems, different, ipaas, service.
  • - Welcome to our ultimate Sezzle review. If you run an online business you know how crucial it is to offer your customers the right payment solutions at checkout. Imagine offering only Sripe as the payment option for shoppers on your… Continue reading The Ultimate Sezzle Review (Dec 2021): A Pay Later Service for Online Shopping
    Topics: online, dec, customers, customer, product, ecommerce, pay, shopping, later, credit, solution, sezzle, review, ultimate, payment, service.
  • The network effect is anti-competitive - Social networks and online marketplace providers have become digital dictators with complete control over their territories.
    Topics: app, effect, service, techcrunch, social, resellers, digital, anticompetitive, marketplace, business, online, tech, control, network.
  • Three Areas to Focus on Customer Service in 2022 and Win Online - A headline recently caught my eye, which highlighted the rising cost of delivering an ecommerce experience and how the days of going online for better deals may be shifting as retailers and branded manufactures start to raise prices online to improve margins. Working for a company that sells an ecommerce platform, it got me thinking about how this reality might impact online customer experiences. While there was almost a blind rush to get 100% online during the pandemic, businesses will no doubt be evaluating how they invest in ecommerce to support permanent shifts in buying habits. In 2021, buyers started to go in store/in person or continued embrace a hybrid approach like buy online and return in store, this had created more data that shows profits are better when buyers use brick and mortar commerce. The corporate bean counters that analyze spreadsheets will be pressing the business to push buyers down a more profitable path and likely begin question the value of ecommerce investments in favor of seeing recovery from more traditional channels. Others might view ecommerce as a risk mitigation approach for when the next pandemic hits and make sure there is something viable in place. And some may focus on how to cut costs across the ecommerce supply chain, with little thought on the impact to the buyer – hey it’s the new normal as we wait 6 months for a couch, right? However, real winners in all this will be the companies that look at ecommerce as part of a multi-channel customer service experience. Instead of grouping buyers into those that buy online and those that don’t, businesses will need to consider the following three segments: Those that prefer to buy online Those that prefer in person buying experiences Those that move almost equally between both experiences. Add to that a deep layer of buyer complexity for the hybrid buyer is how they move from online direct-to-consumer vs. online marketplace sites vs. in person buying. The following are three areas that companies should consider pulling in your customer success/customer service team to input on design ideas and optimize across multiple channels where ecommerce is involved. 1. Returns/Exchanges Always a hot topic around the holidays and certainly driving the discussion around the rising cost of ecommerce in 2021 is returns and exchanges. The impact of returned merchandize is having major cost impacts on businesses, but also some are seeing it as an environmental impact. “According to research firm Statista, the delivery car fleet could reach 7.2 million vehicles by the end of this decade, and total emissions caused by parcel and freight shipping are forecast to generate 25 million tons of CO2. In addition, the average commute time, including last-mile delivery, is expected to increase from 53 minutes in 2019 to 64 minutes in 2030.” (Source) “Approximately 30% of e-commerce sales are returned compared to 10% of brick-and-mortar sales, according to CBRE.” (Source) Data shows that consumers return more things bought online and if you think about the deliver chain for returns, the environmental impact of delivery is 2x and if you exchange something it is 3x – deliver the item, return the item, and deliver the new item. While companies focus on fuel efficient modes of transportation, it likely will take decades to offset the rapid rise in transportation required to support rising online buying behaviors. However, there is a customer service opportunity that elevates your brand, cuts cost and maybe even adds to an upselling model when enticing buyers into the store when returning an item. Providing incentive to take items ordered online to a branded store or reseller location can accomplish this task – but it can’t just be a reward model, brands can use this to connect ethical environment issues with buyers that find this more and more important. Buyers are choosing loyalty not just based on convenience, but also how the brand aligns with their personal values. Having the buyer bring back the merchandize themselves while on their way home from work or out grocery shopping will reduce the use of less fuel-efficient vehicles and packaging waste required to return an item. 2. Online Search The great thing about selling your goods and services online is your entire inventory is online for the buyer to find. The bad thing about selling your goods and services online is your entire inventory is online for the buy to find. Companies that are using outdated search tools (many of which are packaged with an “all-in-one” ecommerce platform) are missing an opportunity to provide a customer experience critical to generating that first sale and generating loyalty and referrals. By now, it's not a secret that search can drive revenue, but the experience needs to be optimized using more best-in-class tools (part of the composable commerce movement) and consider evolving buying stages when searching. Research circa 2013 showed that search was aligned to late-stage buyers coming to your site and driving higher conversions as a result. But that motion is dependent on the buyer already knowing your brand when they used the search function. With more and more buyers engaging with your brand online as a first experience, your search needs to be an experience versus just a means to an end – it needs to be fast; it needs to understand natural language and type tolerance, it needs to be able to pull in promotions and suggestions in a more engaging format, it needs to align with your catalog management layer to create dynamic and engaging filters to help refine how buyers find products.   Give customers a better experience with an Omnichannnel approach An Omnichannel approach to your commerce strategy will help you deliver a more seamless, frictionless customer experience, at every stage of the buyer's journey. Learn more with our complete guide. Read our Omnichannel Guide 3. Be proactive when there are delays One of my biggest pet peeves buying online is getting to the cart, or even worse, submitting an order to only to be informed that what you want is out of stock or will be delayed due to back-logs. This has become an even hotter topic in 2021 as the supply chain crisis has impacted so many buyers across all industries. Every online seller should make it their mission to create transparency on availability of items and when the buyer has accepted the terms that there will be a delay, proactively update them on status – even if the status is we are still working to get a delivery date. I can speak to this personally having recently ordered a new living room set. We were told it would take up to 10 weeks to get our living room set and we were okay that because it was the “new normal” for 2021. However, that timeline has moved out several times and the only way we know is we (my wife and I) had to call up the company for a status. It is frustrating to think that this company has banked thousands of dollars of our money and we are waiting on product with little to no communication – at least pretend that someone has eyes on our order and is working to get it fulfilled. Not to mention it is possible an alternative may have come up that is in stock and depending on our personal preferences, we might have upgraded to a more expensive set just to get it faster. Not only are there opportunities to improve the customer service experience, but companies could be leaving an upsell opportunity on the table. This will require orchestration across in-store, online, manufacturing and delivery – but knowing that is an area that needs optimization to cut costs, makes sense to include the customer support team into the project to find ways to integrate the buyer communication experience as well. What is interesting is this concept of helping the buy is nothing new. I worked at Herb’s Sport Shop in Hartford, CT back in the 90’s to help pay for college expenses. We had a very small retail floor – so we were limited in the merchandize we would have for customer to browse. The owner required that every customer that came in the door was greeted within seconds of entering – it was the owners only mandate. Most customer loved it as they could describe what they wanted and we help them find it in seconds and we would also upsell in a conversational way, “we have some new team apparel that would match the color on these Air Jordan’s perfectly”. We focused on making sure the customer got value from stepping into our store, we did not have the mall traffic as we were selling on “Main Street USA” – but we knew that every person that came into the store had value and we needed to maximize that experience and this is the principal that needs to be applied across every customer interaction if you want to win in a world of endless online options.
    Topics: win, delivery, areas, needs, ecommerce, customer, store, search, online, focus, buyer, service, buyers, experience.
  • Tidio raises $25M to automate customer service interactions - During the pandemic especially, it’s become overwhelming for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to answer all of their customer service requests. A Freshworks survey found that companies experienced a 71% increase in overall contact volume between February 2020 and January 2021, and expect it to increase further. At the same time, customers — while empathetic […]
    Topics: businesses, sales, interactions, customer, company, service, techcrunch, raises, automate, customers, 25m, gołas, increase, tidio, platform.
  • Top 5 Questions on SOC 2 Compliance - When it comes to selecting an eCommerce solution it is important to base your evaluation on more than just functionality and pricing. You will want to confirm your chosen commerce solution has the high security standards in place to ensure that your systems and data are kept secure. Fail to do this, and you could end up with security compromises like a data breaches or system intrusions, hurting your company’s reputation, customer loyalty, and jeopardizing revenue. Security assessments like the SOC 2 evaluation provide a comprehensive and centralized, third party report to ensure you’re working with a vendor that has validated they follow the highest standards of security practices, policies, procedures, and operations. SOC 2 compliances reduces time spent on security evaluations and provides the confidence that your data is secure so you can launch and drive revenue faster while keeping your business operating at 100%. Familiarize yourself with SOC 2 with the top five questions we hear from prospects:  What does SOC 2 Compliance mean? SOC stands for System and Organizational Controls and is based on the Trust Services Criteria. This criteria is focused on the ability to report on the design of controls (and/or testing and operating effectiveness of those controls) for a service organization. The SOC 2 report addresses an organization’s controls pertaining to operations and compliance standards; things like security, integrity, availability, privacy, and confidentiality are all aspects of SOC2. Why is it important to be SOC 2 compliant? SOC 2 is an auditing procedure that ensures service providers securely manage data to protect the interests of organizations and the privacy of its clients.  If your chosen commerce partner is SOC 2 compliant it means you can trust that they will do everything possible to protect your data and systems. What is the benefit to the customer for a vendor to be SOC 2 Compliant? SaaS vendors in particular need to be SOC 2 compliant in many instances, especially when they sell to the enterprise. Enterprises are often beholden to a wide variety of security and compliance controls and being demonstrably SOC 2 examined as a vendor gives those enterprise customers the peace of mind they need to do business with Elastic Path. What security practices and procedures are assessed during a SOC 2 Compliance evaluation? SOC 2 evaluates the operational policies, communications, procedures, and monitoring concerning four Trust Service Categories (TSC): Security – Information and systems are protected against unauthorized access (both physical and logical), unauthorized disclosure, and damage Availability – Information and systems are available for operation and use as committed Processing integrity – System processing is complete, valid, accurate, timely, and authorized Confidentiality – Confidential information is secured, and access is controlled What are the principles of SOC 2? Elastic Path utilizes independent third-party auditors to test the Elastic Path Commerce Cloud platform against the widely accepted security standards controls of SOC 2. These examinations are conducted by a respected audit and security firm that is independent and thorough in its inspections. The SOC2 examination report is intended to meet the needs of a broad range of users that need detailed information and assurance about the controls at a service organization relevant to the security, availability, and processing integrity of the systems the service organization uses to process data.  With Elastic Path successfully achieving the SOC2 examination, we can ensure peace of mind to our customers. Learn more about how you can build your eCommerce vision with confidence by visiting our Trust page.
    Topics: soc, questions, report, controls, path, security, systems, compliance, standards, trust, data, service.
  • TradeDepot raises $110M from IFC, Novastar to extend BNPL service to merchants across Africa - Startups digitizing B2B e-commerce and retail in Africa continue to grab the headlines after the pandemic paved the way for widespread offline retail and commerce disruption. TradeDepot, a Nigeria- and U.S.-based company that connects consumer goods brands to thousands of retailers and helps with distribution, has raised $110 million in new equity and debt funding […]
    Topics: merchants, retailers, raises, extend, novastar, debt, bnpl, retail, tradedepot, africa, techcrunch, ifc, company, work, nigeria, service, equity.
  • Trustshare runs escrow infrastructure as a service to facilitate online sales - Meet Trustshare, a London-based startup that is working on escrow infrastructure for online classified, B2B marketplaces, trade directories and more. It’s a white-label platform that can be integrated with online marketplaces in just a few lines of code. If you’ve ever tried to sell something expensive on the web, you know that it’s hard to […]
    Topics: uk, know, techcrunch, sales, infrastructure, payment, trade, facilitate, money, checkout, runs, online, escrow, marketplaces, service, trustshare.
  • Uber, Grocery Outlet partner to pilot on-demand and scheduled grocery delivery - Uber is partnering with Grocery Outlet to pilot on-demand and scheduled grocery delivery, the company announced on Thursday. Starting today, users can shop at 72 Grocery Outlet stores in California, Oregon and Washington state via the Uber or Uber Eats app. The new partnership signifies Uber’s push into on-demand and scheduled grocery delivery. Oskar Hjertonsson, […]
    Topics: uber, partnership, outlet, pilot, announced, scheduled, ondemand, grocery, company, service, partner, delivery, stores, techcrunch.
  • Walmart announces GoLocal, a last-mile delivery service for other retailers - Walmart today announced a new delivery service business called Walmart GoLocal, which allows other merchants, both large and small, to tap into Walmart’s own delivery platform to get orders to their customers. Merchants can choose to use the service for a variety of delivery types, including scheduled and unscheduled deliveries, including same-day delivery, and they […]
    Topics: retailers, lastmile, delivery, walmarts, customers, merchants, techcrunch, walmart, announces, services, service, golocal, local.
  • Walmart to expand InHome grocery delivery to 30 million US households in 2022 - Walmart is expanding its service that will deliver your groceries directly to your refrigerator, the company announced today. First launched in fall 2019, Walmart’s InHome delivery service, as it’s called, allows customers to place grocery orders online, then receive their deliveries by having a Walmart associate enter their home by way of a smart lock. […]
    Topics: ward, expand, households, service, grocery, techcrunch, customers, million, company, walmart, delivery, inhome, smart, associate, walmarts.
  • What Is a Revenue Model? - Deciding how you’ll generate revenue is one of the most challenging decisions for a business to make, aside from coming up with what you’ll actually sell.
    Topics: pricing, models, businesses, revenue, customers, service, makes, business, sell, model.
  • What does a waste management company, floral business, and religious literature seller all have in common? - What could possibly tie the topic of dumpsters, flowers and bibles? In commerce practice we run into all kinds of business problems, the solution to which almost always requires distinctly different approach and, more often than not, a significant amount of customization in order to either fit the solution to the business or bend the business to fit the solution. This blog post will recount the three-week true story of how a team of Elastic Path commerce experts helped three customers from completely different industries achieve successful but, drastically different outcomes with one commerce platform. WEEK ONE: Dumpsters The Customer At the beginning of the trip, on week one, we met with one of the major national waste management companies. The best way to characterize the product catalog of this customer is a small number of service offerings with extremely complex availability and pricing rules. Getting right to the essence of it, waste management is a subscription-based service, not unlike telco for example. The market is competitive, and our customer wanted to get ahead of the competition by eliminating the friction associated with speaking to a representative in order to sign up; reducing confusion by taking the guided selling approach, and removing the barrier to entry by offering a personalized pricing to each customer. At the time of implementation, the client was of mixed digital maturity, varying from very low to moderate. The Challenge Parts of the business were archaic, to say the least, running on manual processes and mainframes, while their service availability and their extremely complex, location-specific pricing were managed on very advanced GIS (geographic information system). As mentioned, their pricing model is complex and a price for a particular service is dependent on the location, term of service whether under contract or not, etc. In addition, this brand wanted a phased roll out: once their B2B and B2C online businesses were stable, they planned to eventually include their commercial line of business, which was at the time solely in the domain of direct Sales interactions. Sure, why not. WEEK TWO: Flowers The Customer Next week we met with one of the largest private floral and gardening businesses in the Midwest. The client wanted to ensure that the cut flower arrangements their consumers ordered online were delivered to the right person, with a correct dedication, and at the specified time. Unlike the last example, this customer had a low digital maturity but, we were still eager to understand their challenge. The Challenge Among other things, we had to integrate with a largely manual distributed fulfillment system. Obviously, the complexity here lies in the formation of the products as well as the fulfillment. The product, a sellable item, is a flower arrangement, consists of several elements plus various flowers in specific quantity. Any issue with any one of these elements makes the product unavailable. Plus, here were also all kinds of free-form, make-your-own flower arrangements. The customer also operated a couple of garden centers, as well as a landscaping materials depot, and their aspirations were to get the gardening and landscaping included in their online commerce presence along with their principal cut flowers business. This, obviously, would involve selling bulk landscaping materials such as sand and gravel online. Need help evaluating eCommerce Providers? Connect with an Elastic Path expert to answer all of your questions, set up a demo, access a free trial, or discuss pricing options. Get in Touch WEEK THREE: Bibles The Customer The week after that we met one of the oldest and most respected publisher and bookseller in North America, specializing in religious literature whose goal was to move away from maintaining their hundred plus brick-and-mortar stores. This customer was of very high digital maturity and needed their commerce technology to easily integrate with their existing microservice and event-based systems. The Challenge Anyone who has implemented commerce will agree with me that selling books is, well, hard, and this was even more interesting than your usual book seller. A massive catalog with their own- and third-party products, significant product variance, and more. Both B2B and B2C buyer journeys were complex, riddled with a variety of group-buy and buy-on-behalf scenarios as well as complex fulfillment requirements. The customer's aspirations were, once fully transitioned to online sales, to get out of their traditional geographical territory which was limited by physical store presence and increase their reach nationally and internationally. They wanted regional and country level distinction, micro-sites, separation of group-buy and products for personal use. So, complex and dynamic, personalized catalog segmentation. What do waste management company, a floral business, and a religious literature seller all have in common? I am not going to sit here and tell you how we implemented all of this in three weeks. The subsequent implementations were appropriately long for each of the cases and depended on the complexity of integration. In the end we ended up with three happy clients. But that's not the point. The point is that we used the exact same commerce system in all three business cases and were able to model the business in our commerce system without customizations or modifications exactly the way the customer wanted. Not only that. We gave our customers the freedom to continue to develop and transform their business with minimal help from IT. All of our customers, regardless of their industry or size wanted to be better than competition, different than their competition. We managed to provide each of our customers with the ability to succeed and grow by giving them the power of effortless differentiation. So what do dumpsters, flowers, and bibles all have in common? They can also be sold with one hyper-flexible commerce solution. Learn how you can start selling your products with Elastic Path Commerce Cloud today.
    Topics: wanted, business, customers, system, service, flowers, dumpsters, commerce, complex, pricing, customer, solution, bibles.
  • What is Data as a Service (DaaS)? - "The Cloud." It's a concept that has grown wildly within the past 20-40 years as technology evolves. But if you're like me, you might not know what it really means.
    Topics: cloud, data, service, analytics, daas, store, platform, using, companies, company.
  • Why Modern Solutions Break Business Model Boundaries - An Analysis of Subscriptions - Information technology is a sea of techno babble, three letter acronyms (TLAs) and jargon, which is not helped by our human condition driving us to compartmentalise and classify everything neatly into clearly aligned boxes, which I have successfully extended with my own lexicon of buzz words over the years. The most common TLAs are focussed on defining transactional business relationships B2C, B2B, D2C...  and the list goes on. This basically works even in our rapidly changing world, although it does leave interpretation open to the individual. Let’s examine this Opening Statement:  Do we need to draw artificial lines between B2C / B2B / D2C / M2Q etc. to get to the right composed solution? Modern Composable Commerce solutions cross both functional and business model boundaries aiming to deliver the most personalised, targeted, enriched and immersive experience for all purchasers. Subscriptions based solutions are a great example of this in action, offering predictable revenues for the selling organisation, whilst increasing options for buyers that drives affordability and positively impacts loyalty. COVID has accelerated in-device and online orders, which subscription offerings maximise, due to our growing consumption-based needs during lock down, which conversely calls for increased choice, on-demand delivery, and flexibility in financial options. Robbie Baxter’s book, The Membership Economy, demonstrates how for agile companies focused on ongoing buyer relationships and providing access instead of just ownership, leveraging subscriptions is significantly impacting recurring revenues. This is further highlighted by Gartner stating the growing importance of subscriptions in our daily lives and predicts that by 2023 - 75% of online offers will be subscription based. The growth of subscriptions is impacting our lives as consumers and the industry generally: CFO Research have outlined that “53% of senior finance executives say at least 40% of organisations’ revenue is recurring”   Deliotte say over 41% of households today subscribe to one or more music streaming service and 69% subscribe to video streaming   PYMNTS.com say “The luxury car subscription market is set to grow by 71% by 2022”   Invesp highlight Average conversion rate by service type is:       • 65% Replenishment       • 52% Curation       • 51% Access Let’s dive deeper into subscriptions, to examine why they operate across boundaries, and are critical to modern trading strategies. Firstly, we generally subscribe to three types of commodities: Physical Goods; Digital Goods and Services, in isolation or in concert. Each commodity shares common characteristics that define them as a subscription: Duration   Renewal processes   Cancelation policies   Payment terms   Price These attributes are critical to both buyers or sellers and determine clear recurring order cycles which help sellers react accurately to supply and demand and buyers quickly assess a cost / benefit analysis. All consumers see this from a value-based purchase perspective, but buyer personas consumption need vary, for example: A procurer at a large hospital will assess the purchase against operational running costs and usages trends.   A manufacturer would define production volumes and profit margins based on the materials required from suppliers in subscription cycles. Arguably the buyer examples open the question “Are these all subscriptions?” and what is the difference between a recurring order vs. manufacturing supply chain vs. subscription. This further dives into the alignment of business and technology needs questions like “Is recurring billing a subscription? Or Is order replenishment a subscription?” I want to recognise that there are fine lines to draw here which can have different interpretations. These differences in language and interpretation provide the 1st supporting point to the opening statement, that we are building artificial boundaries, which we’ll review at the end. Some great customer examples: Blink cat food is a great example of Physical Goods based subscriptions. Providing cat owners the ability to build their own cat food box subscription to meet their specific cats’ needs while giving them peace of mind that they’ll never be caught off guard by an empty cupboard. Starting with a simple trial and graduating to a fully configurable monthly box with personalised discounts all within a few simple clicks while supporting all the base characteristics of great a subscription. Blink was implemented by Pixie Labs, a UK based product development studio and partner of Elastic Path, leveraging Elastic Path Commerce Cloud as the headless commerce solution of choice. Pixie Labs recently launched their new Pre-Composed SolutionTM for Subscriptions which will offer clients selling physical goods a rapidly configurable solution founded on the concepts of Blink, which reduces speed to market and total cost of ownership with a highly customizable subscription management solution which can flex with your needs to ensure complete control over customer experience. CTA reMarkable is a great example of Digital Goods based subscriptions. The recently launched reMarkable Connect subscription services, provide reMarkable customers with the ability to leverage Dropbox or Google Drive integrations to access PDFs which can be uploaded to the reMarkable for reading and dynamic annotation, then sharing via email, to the cloud storage or present live. The reMarkable internal IT team have been leveraging Elastic Path Commerce Cloud for over 5 years and have extended our headless platform with Stripe our premier partner, leveraged by clients for recurring billing-based subscription solutions. Services based subscriptions around various traders is combined the other subscription based or purchasable items. Generally in complex and highly configurable solution offerings to clients & businesses, installation services, maintenance contracts, phone tariffs like T-Mobile and are combined with hardware & software. Today many service based subscriptions are custom built as every service offering is unique to support the the complete services like incident & maintenance services. The baseline attributes required to support service offerings changes the baseline across different business models, requiring a variety of consumption, utilization or distribution approaches, and require allocation of expert services. They help to start building from the baseline attributes, as different business models as the examples above demonstrate, require varying consumption or distribution approaches, and require allocation of expert services. These radically change how the seller markets and release commodities to maximise revenue from the target subscribers, example of addition attributes: These attributes only scratch the surface of possibilities and shouts “With great power comes great responsibility.” I say this as the increasing commercial benefits of subscriptions and our access driven generation of buyers (like my three sons {18, 19, 25}) are: demanding social immersion, experiential engagement, hyper personalisation, low entry costs and simplicity of acquisition. These factors are moving us to what I would call “multi-dimensional subscription configurations” which will combine all purchases & subscriptions into a super subscription set or consumption-based ordering. This also carries the risk of over complicating initial purchasing experiences, and allowing technicians to confuse and scare buyers if not designed with the buyer in mind, and begs the question: Does the most complex model cover all requirements? Well, experience teaches me that the most complete and flexible model “NOT complex” will cover North of 85% of use cases, but never all, and opens a world of potential. This also highlights why there is a growing ecosystem of specialised Subscription software vendor working with this in mind. This serves as the 3rd supporting point to the opening statement. Beyond these basic subscription elements, most running solutions in the wild leverage other touch points which increasingly impacting why subscriptions are becoming more influential, including: Trials, Teasers, Testers, Tasters: Being able to have an initial small order sent home or access to a game you want to test out for a limited usage. As part of the composable subscription solution, inventory and fulfilment could be restricted or the download series will have a timeout set in the entitlement system. The ability to try before you buy is nothing new and is something generally which increases confidence and longevity.   Social & Community: As COVID has proven, we will adapt and overcome and the human desire to interact, communicate, collaborate, and share only burns even brighter online than ever. Coupling this to the fact that many traditional subscriptions offered as part of membership to clubs (crafting, reading, sports .. ). Social and immersive experiences within the eCommerce landscape are at the heart of all great compositions, while leveraging natural and authentic interactions which supports subscribers and allows them to socialise with each other organically growing the future stickiness of the commodity and providing value feedback to the seller.   Loyalty: When we subscribe, especially to a service, the seller wants to build our loyalty to protect their revenue stream. Microsoft and Amazon are great examples as they release additional value-added services and either provide them for free or bundle them for a limited time, and additionally provide services points that can be redeemed as rewards for play and usage.   Promotions: There isn’t a a trading journey or solution operating today that isn’t impacted by some form of promotion and marketing activity. Subscriptions models expand the needs further: i.     First 3 months free and remaining 9 months at 20% off; ii.    Subscribe to this get access to this for 4 weeks free; Additionally handling the promotions at time of renewal and during reverse logistics can be a little unique. Each of these composable components are defined, selected and controlled by the needs and requirements of the business, so transcend baseline concepts of a business model and remove boundaries to trading with all buyer personas. The growing ecosystem of critical touch points is the 4th supporting point to the opening statements that subscription trading models highlight. So let’s wrap up: “Do we need to draw artificial lines between B2C / B2B / D2C / M2Q etc. to get to the right composed solution?” I suggest we should not, let’s look at the supporting point: The overlap in functional and terms, exemplified by subscriptions, shows a wider challenge we face in communicating clearly how to address business needs and impact revenue growth, and trying to bundle everything into a B2B or B2C bucket kills our opportunity to innovate.   Businesses who provide subscriptions want to generate a predictable revenue stream for all commodities they offer. This is designed with a target persona in mind, however the seller wants to open the ability for others to purchase and grow their customer base, whether consumer, reseller, distributor, etc.   The need for open and flexible subscription solutions supports all types of commodities and purchasing terms has not direct correlation to the business model, but the type of commodity and how it will be consumed by the end buyer. Especially with access-based consumption if I’m a business buyer or consumer has little importance.   The expanding Composable Commerce ecosystem demands agility, flexibility, and choice. Subscription models are a collision point requiring interaction across the broader solution landscape while increasing cohesion with the end subscriber to bring value. This is like the 3rd point but is more architectural in nature. When considering the convenience and reduced cost for the buyer, coupled with predictable revenue and increased control over the supply chain, highlights the growing importance of subscriptions in our modern trading world and in my view an important step in the dissolution of boundaries across business models.
    Topics: business, services, break, service, boundaries, based, subscriptions, analysis, subscription, solution, model, great, buyer, revenue, modern, solutions.
  • WoodSpoon’s food delivery service cooks up support for home chefs with $14M round - The co-founders reached out to local home chefs and gathered them together in a marketplace where they could share their culture and passion of food with others.
    Topics: 14m, woodspoon, techcrunch, company, chef, service, food, customers, series, saar, round, cooks, woodspoons, delivery, support, chefs.
  • Zip acquisition of Payflex means Africa is ripe for BNPL disruption - Australian buy now, pay later (BNPL) company Zip this week acquired South Africa-based BNPL player Payflex for an undisclosed amount. It’s a piece of news that once again highlights the hype around BNPL services and the quest for global dominance among the leading players. This year we have covered BNPL services from the likes of […]
    Topics: payflex, south, zip, services, company, africa, players, bnpl, techcrunch, disruption, service, markets, ripe, market, means, acquisition.
  • eBay acquires the sneaker authentication business from partner Sneaker Con Digital - Online marketplace eBay is further investing in its sneaker business with today’s news that it’s acquiring Sneaker Con Digital’s authentication business, which verifies the authenticity of high-value footwear. The business has operations in the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia, and Germany, and had been previously working with eBay to vet the sneakers being bought and sold […]
    Topics: digital, business, ebay, buyer, shoes, techcrunch, authentication, acquires, buyers, authenticity, service, sneakers, sneaker, partner.
  • eBay rolls out fulfillment service in UK - eBay will roll out a new service in the United Kingdom: eBay fulfilment by Orange Connex. This is an end-to-end fulfillment service for eBay business sellers located in the UK. It offers same-day handling, late cut off times and the option of next-day or standard delivery to end customers. With… Continue reading
    Topics: sellers, uk, ebay, connex, payment, service, orange, online, fulfillment, delivery, rolls, fulfilment.