This week’s article recommendations from the thought leaders on our retail and travel consulting team include news about how e-commerce is starting out in 2014, ways companies are moving to enhance in-store experiences, and some interesting trends in the grocery sector.
- “US E-Commerce: 2014 Starts with a Bang” [Custora]: While overall retail sales were slightly down in January, e-commerce numbers were up year-over-year.
- “Store-Based Retailers Take the Early Lead Among Top 500 Retailers in Online Sales Growth” [InternetRetailer]: Online retail growth continues to increase, showing initial estimates of a 24 percent increase for surveyed companies.
- “This Is What Retailers Need to Do to Get People to Buy In-Store” [Business Insider]: This study explores areas that retailers should consider to help their customers have a better in-store experience.
- “China Web Merchants See the Future and It’s Mobile” [InternetRetailer]: Chinese companies are preparing for a time when mobile commerce could make up at least 50 percent of all Web sales.
- “When It Comes to Retail Tech, Consider Gray Matter Before Gray Hair” [RetailWire]: Staying ahead with the latest technology trends in retail is not necessarily about experience—it’s more about having the right perspective.
- “Rakuten to Acquire Viber Internet Messaging App for $900 Million” [Bloomberg]: Rakuten is looking to open up an additional distribution channel for its digital products, possibly to combine messaging with shopping and gaming.
- “Are Grocery Stores Doomed?” [Forbes]: More and more consumers are looking to big box retailers and convenience stores to handle their grocery needs.
- “The Digital Future of Stores” [Internet Retailer]: Britain-based B&Q works to add technology to its stores as a way of enhancing the customer experience.
- “Gap Announces Voluntary Boost of Its Workers’ Minimum Wage” [Business Insider]: Amid debate in Washington about the minimum wage, Gap will be moving to increase the wage of about 65,000 workers in the US.