• Marketers Strive to Integrate Search & Social; Matching Online & In-Store Customer Experiences

    RetailTechNews’ weekly roundup brings you up-to-date research findings from around the world. In this week’s edition: Marketers Strive to Integrate Search & Social; Matching Online & In-Store Customer Experiences; and Brits Ready for AR.

    Marketers Strive to Integrate Search & Social

    Integrating search and social is the biggest challenge of 2018 for B2C digital advertisers, according to Marin Software’s ‘State of Digital Advertising’ report. Almost half (48%) of advertisers named it as one of their three biggest challenges in relation [...]

  • Weekly Focus: Alibaba Cainiao to Build HK Logistics Hub & Taps AI to 'Speed-Write' Product Info

    This week, Alibaba’s logistics arm has announced plans to build a logistics hub in Hong Kong, setting aside USD$1.53bn (£1.14bn) for the new development, while has turned on an AI system to ‘speed-write’ product descriptions and shopping guides.

    To be located at the Chinese territory’s international airport, the project will be spearheaded by Alibaba’s Cainiao Network and its joint venture (JV) with China National Aviation Corporation and YTO Express. Cainiao owns a 51% stake in the JV, while China [...]

  • Weekly Focus: Alibaba Makes Delivery Investment & Unveils Voice System That Lets Customers Correct Their Orders

    This week, Alibaba Group is back in the news with a string of announcements, including an investment in a Chinese express delivery company and the introduction of a voice-recognition retail system that lets customers correct their orders.

    The e-commerce giant said it has led a team of investors, including its logistics arm Cainiao Network, to fork out USD$1.38bn (£1.04bn) for a 10% equity stake in Shanghai-based ZTO Express. The move aimed to beef up first- and last-mile delivery services to [...]

  • Paypal Buys iZettle; Dunnhumby Acquires Aptaris

    RetailTechNews rounds up some of the biggest stories in the European retail technology space. In this week’s edition: Paypal to Acquire iZettle; Dunnhumby Buys Marketing Software Company Aptaris; and ‘Tap & Go’ in UK Stores.

    Paypal to Acquire iZettle

    The biggest deal ever for payment giant Paypal: the ex-eBay company is investing USD$2.2bn (£1.6bn) in the acquisition of Swedish mobile payment provider iZettle – a move that will see Paypal reinforce their business activities in iZettle markets such as Germany, Brazil, or [...]

  • Greater Customer Intimacy Can Be Achieved Through Machine Learning

    Retail loyalty has been around since the 1700s, when American retailers gave customers ‘coins’ that they could redeem in-store during a future visit. These were later replaced with stamps and, at the beginning of the last century, box-top coupon cutting was introduced. Later came points, frequent flier miles, and other brand or retailer-specific programmes. In this piece, Steve Grout, director of loyalty, Collinson, explains that although the goal in loyalty has always remained the same, there has been a [...]

  • Weekly Focus: Singapore Online Marketplaces Snag £106.82m in Funds

    This week, two of Singapore’s online marketplaces, Carousell and Carro, have secured funds totalling USD$145m (£106.82m), while Alibaba says it has acquired South Asian e-commerce platform, Daraz.

    Classifieds site Carousell snagged USD$85m (£62.62m) in its Series C funding, which also saw the addition of DBS Bank as a new investor and retail partner. Co-led by Rakuten Ventures and EDBI, the latest round was once again joined by existing investors 500 Startups, Golden Gate Ventures, and Sequoia India.

    The new funds will be [...]

  • How Retailers Can Activate Tomorrow’s AI Marketing Technology – Today

    In this piece, Grant Coleman, VP and market director, Emarsys UK, tells RetailTechNews how, today, customers enjoy more purchasing options and control than ever before. A shift in the balance of power from brand to customer has triggered a period of transformation in the retail sector. Ambitious retailers must give customers what they want, and how and when they want it, or risk losing them to more agile competitors. The question is, how can they scale to get in [...]

  • The Rise of Conversational Marketing: Q&A with iAdvize

    Even though more sales are taking place online, shoppers have as many questions to ask as when they went in-store. This Q&A with Marie Sagarzazu (pictured below), UK country manager, iAdvize, looks at how conversational marketing tools can fill this gap, and help e-commerce sites match the in-store experience.

    RetailTechNews: How does conversational marketing work and how does what you offer differ from automated chatbots?

    Marie Sagarzazu: Conversational marketing is centred around actual conversations between brands and their customers that are at the [...]

  • Weekly Focus: Alibaba Taps Marketplace Insights to Help Brands Create New Products

    This week, the spotlight is back on Alibaba Group and its touted use of online customer data to help brands come up with new products that cater to current consumer desires and needs.

    The Chinese e-commerce operator, together with global confection maker Mars, created a new flavour for the latter’s Snickers bar that tapped the popularity of mala amongst consumers in China. Mala, typically used in the form of a sauce, is spicy and numbs the lips and tongue when eaten.

    The [...]

  • Prime Membership Numbers Announced; USPS Could Make Amazon Suffer

    RetailTechNews’ weekly Amazon Watch brings you some of the company’s biggest moves from the past seven days, analysing how the giant is revolutionising the retail space. In this week’s edition: Prime Membership Numbers Announced; USPS Could Make Amazon Suffer; and Smart Speaker Market Booming.

    Prime Membership Numbers Announced

    Amazon Prime’s membership tops more than 100 million accounts worldwide, the company said this afternoon, revealing the number of subscribers to its fast-shipping programme for the first time.

    With a cost of USD$99bn (£70bn) [...]