Online Retail News In Brief (06 September 2017)


In case you missed them, we’ve pulled together a few online retail news highlights from around the web this week.

Here are some of the latest stories in online retail.

The Power of Packaging

Macfarlane's annual Unboxing Survey has been published. Some findings:

  • One in five packages (20%) were described by online shoppers in the survey as being essentially unfit for purpose
  • Reports of products arriving damaged fell from 10% in 2016 to 7% in 2017.
  • The increased use of aids such as tear strips (44%) contributed to a major fall in consumers reporting packages as difficult to open – from 24% in 2016 to only 5% in 2017.

Download the report here.

Rise in number of shoppers using mobile payments

A survey conducted by ACI Worldwide and Aite, covering over 6,000 respondents globally, has found that mobile wallet adoption appears to be growing globally – with 17% of US respondents now using their smartphones regularly to complete payments, up from 6% in 2014.

The survey found that Spanish shoppers are the most active users of mobile wallets in Europe, with 25% using them regularly, with Italy (24%), Sweden (23%) and the UK (14%) following them.

Bitcoin keeps getting stronger

CoinDesk reported that on Saturday 5 August, Bitcoin's value broke the $5,000 mark. It dipped soon after following a major sell-off, presumably due the large round figure having been reached.

The episode illustrates cryptocurrency's continued volatile upward trajectory.

Speaking of which...

Introducing WhopperCoin

Burger King has introduced its own cryptocurrency. WhopperCoin is a scheme in which Russian customers earn a point for every ruble they spend on the Whopper. The intention is to launch an app with allows trading of WhopperCoin.

Amazon's fashion offering

Amazon has launched its own label, 'Find'. The ecommerce giant continues on its path into any and all sectors, following its high-profile takeover of Whole Foods completed last Monday.

Icelandic drones has begun drone deliveries to its online retail customers. The marketplace partnered with drone provider Flytrex to pick up goods from shops and restaurants around Reykjavic.

Smile to pay?

According to reports, Alipay is currently piloting use of facial recognition technology for authorising digital payments at KFC in the Chinese city of Huangzhou.

The application, known as ‘Smile to Pay’ utilises a 3D camera for identifying the customer’s face – which just takes a couple of seconds, apparently. It also offers a secondary verification requirement as an option, to enable users to enter their mobile phone number.

Quiet and efficient suction required by EU law

Perhaps the single most important question, one that could have swayed Britons one way or the other on the Brexit question, has finally been found

That question: how loud should a vacuum cleaner be?

The EU has passed rules to regulate the wattage and decibels of vacuum cleaners. The regulation bans the sale of vacuums that use over 900 watts of power and emit over 80 decibels.

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