Weekly Industry Brief: 5.4.2015

Happy Monday! I was running a race in Big Sur last week, so apologies for the silence. Below is a recap of industry news over the last couple of weeks.  Sources can be found in the hyper-linked text after the headline.

Retailer + Brand News:

  • Nordstrom tests curbside pickups for online orders. Link
  • Amazon tests package delivery to cars. Link
  • PayPal tops eBay’s marketplace in sales for the first time. Link
  • Adidas to use marine plastic waste in products from 2016. Link
  • LVMH launches new visually dynamic site design. Link
  • Kenzo revamps website. Link
  • Goodbye 50% off: deep discounts are ending. Link
  • Uber is quietly testing a massive merchant delivery program. Link
    • Uber reportedly planning merchant-delivery service with Tiffany, Louis Vuitton and other brands. Link
  • 8 ways buying luxury will change. Link
  • Amazon web services is a $5B business and it’s growing 50% a year. Link
  • Warby Parker valued at $1.2B. Link
  • Amazon expands business-sales marketplace after three years. Link
  • Amazon shares soar to all-time high on cloud surprise. Link
  • Google’s revenue hurt by rising dollar. Link
  • Lowe’s lets consumers run wild with 3D printing. Link
  • Retail’s new reality: invisible shopping centers and virtual assistants. Link
  • Yoox and Net-a-porter merger may move more luxury online. Link
  • Porter launches men’s athletic wear. Link
  • Concept shop Story to tell Dress Barn’s tale. Link
  • Why Nike and Under Armour are spending wildly to watch your every step. Link
  • Nordstrom invests in turning flagships into destinations. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • Facebook’s newsfeed tweak could add another ding to mobile site traffic. Link
  • Facebook Messenger accounts for 10% of global mobile VoIP. Link
  • Eva Chen exits Lucky. Link
  • Buzzfeed doesn’t care where you watch its videos. Link
  • Pinterest opens up to brands with new ways to plan posts and buy ads. Link
  • Facebook is courting small businesses again. Link
  • Refinery 29 raises $50M. Link
  • Facebook adds video calling to Messenger mobile app. Link
  • The rise of emoji on Instagram is causing language repercussions. Link
  • The new boys’ club: Retailer Instagram accounts targeting men. Link
  • Hulu wants brands to make commercials with Hulu to run on Hulu. Link
  • The latest fashion, trending on Google. Link
  • Linkedin follows Twitter, shocks social media investors. Link
  • Meerkat for iOS now lets you publish livestreams to Facebook and links to your phone contacts. Link

Start-ups:

  • First look at Uber’s co-founder’s shopping concierge “Operator”. Link
  • Beacon marketer Swirl raises $18M in funding. Link
  • Online fashion mall Lyst raises a fashionable $40M. Link
  • Loop commerce raises $16M to make gifts more personal. Link
  • Chipotle signs deal with food delivery start-up Postmates. Link
  • Rocket Internet cuts stakes in lending sites. Link

International:

  • [APAC]
    • WalMart to expand China store network by nearly a third after growth stalls. Link
    • China’s middle class propels Apple’s iPhone sales. Link
    • Japanese clothing store sports robot greeter. Link
    • Rakuten takes stake in Chinese online discount provider Fanli. Link
  • [EU]
    • Amazon hikes free delivery minimum spend to £20. Link
  • [CA]
    • Target returns, auctions off leases on most Canadian properties. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • Apple Pay to hit Best Buy stores in 2015. Link
  • Anonymous sharing app Secret shuts down. Link
  • An example of how shopping could work on the Apple Watch. Link
  • The Apple Watch can now tell you all about your local Apple Store. Link
  • Apple is testing analytics for the app store. Link
  • Android phones can now launch some apps on voice command. Link
  • Luxottica working on new version of Google Glass. Link
  • McDonald’s beacon strategy pushes in-store conversion rate to 20%. Link
  • Adidas-Spotify mobile app partnership helps music listen to runners. Link
  • Pinterest now wants developers to build apps based on all its data. Link

Other:

  • Amazon launches travel service in three major cities. Link
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