Amazon sets eye on India

by Deepak Sharma on Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Amazon set to launch services in India next year

World's largest online retailer, is set to enter India, riding on the second wave of ecommerce boom in India. Amazon is in discussions with leading Indian e-commerce players like, and, among others and may enter the market as early as the first quarter of next year.

Why Tablet Commerce May Trump Mobile Commerce

by Deepak Sharma on Monday, July 25, 2011

Why Tablet Commerce May Trump Mobile Commerce

While all eyes in the online retail space seem to be on social networks and smartphones these days, we’re seeing an emerging trend with tablets that could be the most interesting of all. Only 9% of web shoppers now have tablet devices, but here’s the big deal — most of those people already own smartphones (as well as PCs, of course), and they are saying that they actually prefer to use their tablets for shopping. Not only that, but the ownership of the tablet device itself actually increases the amount of time that people spend online. And we’re anticipating a hockey stick in tablet adoption in the next five years on top of all that.

Google’s Zero Moment of Truth.

by Deepak Sharma

Google’s Zero Moment of Truth

The way we shop is changing and marketing strategies are simply not keeping pace. Whether we're shopping for corn flakes, concert tickets or a honeymoon in Paris, the Internet has changed how we decide what to buy. Today we're all digital explorers, seeking out online ratings, social media-based peer reviews, videos, and in-depth product details as we move down the path to purchase. Marketing has evolved and modern marketing strategies have to evolve with the changing shape of shopping.

At Google, we call this online decision-making moment the Zero Moment of Truth -- or simply ZMOT.

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Retailers embrace text appeal with txt2buy

by Deepak Sharma on Saturday, July 23, 2011

A revolutionary new service which can provide retailers with a much needed boost has just hit the high street, allowing every customer in the UK to purchase items instantly and securely from any advert, simply by sending a text message.

The marketplace is saturated with news of new mobile phone Apps, fragmented m-commerce solutions and the latest smartphone technology, but the reality is that the ‘tried and tested’ SMS is all any retailer needs to reach over 50 million consumers in the UK.

The first service of its kind to hit the UK market, txt2buy offers retailers the chance to gain incremental sales from their existing marketing and to improve their upselling and cross selling opportunities, regardless of whether their customers have the latest smart phone and without having to download an App or waiting for web pages to load.

Retailers simply add a txt2buy call-to-action to their advertising and consumers can order instantly by sending the required keyword  to the number displayed on the advert. Following a simple one-time registration process with txt2buy (similar to setting up a Paypal account) consumers can order items of their choice in as little as  45 seconds, making txt2buy one of the quickest ways to close a sale.

Not only is this breakthrough technology a faster, simpler way for customers to order products they want, retailers can also generate more sales by closing impulse purchases at the moment of engagement with the advertising exposure. This ensures the value of their advertising results in sales with their brand directly and not their competitors.

txt2buy is already in early stage trials with some of the most established UK retail brands and is due to appear in mainstream advertising campaigns from as early as July 2011.

Marketing & Brand Director at txt2buy, Gordon Ellis-Brown, said: “txt2buy is a compelling new service that has the potential to revolutionize how retailers engage with a larger customer base, more than ever before. It is quickest way to close a sale, as consumers don’t need internet access to purchase – all they have to do is send a simple text”.

“The fact that the service works with current technology means that there is no upfront investment, expensive software or training required. As well as measuring offline marketing spend, txt2buy is able to capture that data and offer massive opportunities for up-selling and cross selling” adds Ellis-Brown.

And when it comes to integrating txt2buy into their marketing material it’s as simple as adding an additional call-to-action – one where consumers can instantly respond and buy, anytime, anywhere, 24/7...and no queuing!

Retailers are constantly looking for ways to measure return on advertising spend and strategies to successfully capture more customers and drive more sales without investing large sums of money. With txt2buy making all offline marketing instantly measurable, it seems txt2buy could well be the answer that the embattled high street has been waiting for.

Bing gaining grounds with Retailers

by Deepak Sharma on Friday, July 22, 2011

Retailers are ready to increase their Bing spending

Bing is making inroads into retailers’ search marketing budgets as 41% of merchants plan to divert at least some of their spending from Google Inc. to the two-year-old search engine operated by Microsoft Corp., according to the newest Internet Retailer survey.

Think Big, Sell More

by Deepak Sharma on Monday, July 18, 2011

At Stores, Making 5 for $5 a Bigger Draw Than 1 for $1

Three 12-packs of Pepsi are selling for $12.99 at Stop & Shop grocery stores. Ten cans of tuna, or 10 bags of marshmallows, are going for $10. Six ears of corn for $2. Ten containers of Meow Mix cat food for $5.50.

Want just one each of those items? Well, yes, you get the same discount in most cases. But grocers would prefer that you think bigger. Like most retailers, they are feeling the pinch as people spend less these days. So they are playing a multiples game to entice shoppers to buy more than their shopping lists dictate.

“We look at the customer buying behavior, and that’s how we land on multiples — to get customers a little higher than their typical purchase rate,” said Tom O’Boyle, executive vice president for merchandising and marketing at the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company, which owns grocery stores including Pathmark, A.&P. and Food Emporium.

Mobile sites more favored over Apps

by Deepak Sharma

Big players in e-commerce have gotten the mobile message, study finds

The mobile message seems to be getting through to the heavy hitters in retail: Of 25 well-known brands and e-commerce sales leaders, all have mobile commerce sites, a new study finds. However, only 12% offer an iPhone or Android mobile app.

Features present on all 25 m-commerce sites or apps include product name, product description, price and the ability to complete a purchase, the study finds. From there content and features vary. 88% enable consumers to share product information via social media, 100% provide a store locator, but only 52% integrate GPS satellite technology within the locator. 88% allow consumers to set up an account, 80% enable customers to track orders after a purchase, 80% allow shoppers to create a wish list, 56% enable customers to access their loyalty program accounts, and 40% display estimated shipping charges before adding a product to a shopping cart.

Virtual Assistant at Duane Reade

by Deepak Sharma on Sunday, July 17, 2011

Virtual Assistant' technology makes retail debut at Duane Reade

Next-generation digital signage that uses the latest in holographic imaging and audio-visual technology to create the illusion of a real person is making its U.S. debut at Duane Reade’s new flagship in downtown Manhattan.

The technology, the Tensator Virtual Assistant, is provided by Lawrence, a Tensator Group Co. Completely customized for Duane Reade, it takes the form of a female greeter who welcomes entering customers and provides information on everything store-related. Currently, the greeter has seven different scripts, each of which speaks to a different store element.

Amazon’s just around the corner ‘Showrooms’

by Deepak Sharma on Friday, July 15, 2011

Retailers Fear Becoming Amazon’s ‘Showroom’

A growing number of consumers had taken to going to Best Buy to test consumer electronics and then going online to get them at a cheaper price. As Greg Melich of ISI Group and others have pointed out before and since then, Best Buy appears to be in danger of turning into Amazon’s “showroom.”

50K Retail Pro Merchants can now instantly publish their product data to Facebook, Google & More--directly from their Point of Sale system

by Deepak Sharma on Thursday, July 14, 2011

Over 90% of consumers make purchase decisions based on online research. For retailers, surfacing their inventory in search, mobile and social is just as important as having a website. But this is quite challenging for merchants, since their product data is usually stuck in their point of sale system--with no easy way out. With a new partnership being announced between Retail Pro & Wishpond on Tue, 7/12, over 50,000 merchants will be able to instantly publish their product data online--with a few clicks and at a very low cost.
Retailers can install Wishpond's RetailConnect Import plugin (takes a few minutes). As soon as they do, the Point of Sale system will automatically "push" product inventory data to Wishpond and keep it synchronized with no additional effort. Retailers can use Wishpond's merchant center to view, manage and publish their inventory online to Facebook (as a Facebook Storefront), push it to Google Product Search or to mobile applications.

RetailConnect infographic

More information about Wishpond can be found here:
RetailConnect Announcement:
RetailConnect Infographic:
More information about Retail Pro can be found here: