Mobile traffic climbs but conversion rates stall
Mobile traffic to retail websites has surged across Europe this year, but smartphone sales still only account for 12 per cent of revenue, according to Adobe’s 2016 Mobile Retail Report. There was a 54 per cent year-on-year increase in visits to retail sites from smartphones in 2016, and an 89 per cent rise in revenue growth, outpacing desktops and tablets at 8 per cent and 10 per cent respectively.
Black Friday ‘hasn’t dampened’ Christmas spending
Black Friday and Cyber Monday haven’t dampened Christmas spending, as 20 per cent of shoppers who took advantage of deals still haven’t begun buying Christmas gifts, new research has shown. The research, conducted by analyst firm CONTEXT, also found that almost half of all UK workers (48 per cent) who bought products during Cyber Monday snapped up deals during office hours, with a quarter completing their shopping before their lunch break. Busy workers are also choosing different ways to pick up their purchases, with one-in-four opting for Click and Collect for all of their deals.
Mall of America rolls out interactive kiosks
Mall of America has teamed up with digital display company, Express Image, to deploy six new interactive wayfinding kiosks in its shopping complex. The largest mall in the US, the Minnesota complex caters for 40 million shoppers annually. The new kiosks provide an eagle view with stacked multi-floor destination, travel times and route directions. The kiosk directory also enables users to instantly share and visualise the data on their smartphone through a text to phone feature.
Amex boosts security with InAuth acquisition
American Express has announced the acquisition of InAuth, a mobile authentication and fraud prevention firm, in a bid boost the security of digital transactions made by its customers. The acquisition will enable American Express to evaluate the potential risk of a digital transaction, whether it be a customer logging into their account on a mobile app or web browser, or making a purchase from a merchant’s website.
Black Friday drives record online penetration
In November 2016, online sales of non-food products accounted for 27.6 per cent of total non-food sales in the UK – representing the highest penetration rate on record and the eleventh consecutive month that the level has remained above 20 per cent. This is according to the latest BRC-KPMG figures, which also found that total retail sales in the UK increased by 0.6 per cent last month from November 2015, when they had decreased 0.4 per cent on the preceding year.
ASOS & Wayra establish fashion tech accelerator
ASOS has partnered with Wayra UK, part of Telefónica Open Future, to set up a new accelerator programme for fashion technology startups. The first three startups selected for the programme are working on innovations that allow consumers to crowdfund gifts, facilitate smoother parcel delivery and use AI to improve the customer experience are. The accelerator participants will gain access to services including mentoring from experienced professionals and access to an extensive investor network.
Amazon launches ‘next-gen’ grocery store
Amazon has opened its first bricks and mortar grocery store, Amazon Go, but customers will not need to queue or pay at a till to walk away with their shopping. The checkout-free shopping experience uses technology similar to that used in self-driving cars: computer vision, sensor fusion and deep learning. Amazon’s ‘just walk out’ technology automatically detects when goods are taken from or returned to the shelves and keeps track of them in a virtual cart.
Millennials ‘place product quality above price’
A new survey has found that 55 per cent of UK Millennials have switched from one of their favourite brands in the last 12 months, with the main reasons cited as product quality, availability issues, working conditions and sustainability. Three in 10 Millennials canvassed by GT Nexus, an Infor Company, claimed that they would avoid a brand if it does not treat or pay their workers fairly, while 22 per cent said that they would switch brands if the product is not environmentally friendly.
Retailers ‘not doing enough’ for stressed shoppers
Six in 10 consumers believe that retailers should be doing more to relieve the stress of Christmas shopping, according to new research from Barclaycard. The study found that 72 per cent of UK consumers get stressed while shopping for Christmas goods, rising to 80 per cent for women. However, many people are no longer prepared to accept frustration like long queues and overcrowding.