Weekly Industry Brief: 9.14.2015

Happy Monday! Below is a recap of the industry from the last week.  Sources can be found in the hyperlinked text after the headline.

Brand/Retailer:

  • eBay set to offer shipping club, starting in Germany. Link
  • Etsy testing same-day delivery in New York. Link
  • Toys R Us lowers free shipping limit for online orders. Link
  • Restoration Hardware gears up to launch new concept. Link
  • Macy’s chasing consumer electronics sales through Best Buy partnership. Link
  • Primark throws its hat into U.S. market. Link
  • Google to start testing grocery deliveries this year. Link
  • Farfetch opens ecommerce platform to brands. Link
  • Lululemon profit exceeds estimates as new styles drive sales. Link
  • Quicksilver files for bankruptcy. Link
  • How low can ‘free shipping’ minimums go? Link
  • Coach to debut luxury line at fashion week. Link
  • Kate Spade delivers more clever accessories for Spring. Link
  • Google follows Amazon web services into on-demand supercomputing. Link
  • Blackberry to buy Good Technology getting deeper into security. Link
  • Etsy getting into the manufacturing business. Link
  • Rebecca Minkoff debuts iPhone-charging wallet and new Apple Watch bands. Link

Marketing/Social:

  • Wendy’s VP: millennials respond to realness in video. Link
  • Timberland looks beyond millennials in new ad campaign. Link
  • Kohl’s brings fashion week to shoppers with Lauren Conrad runway livestream. Link
  • Apple exploring creation of its own original video content. Link
  • Uber’s in-car magazine is advertisers’ ticket to targeting local clientele. Link

Startups:

  • Secondhand clothing marketplace thredUP raises $81M Series E let by GSIP. Link
  • Berlin-based online fashion and lifestyle retailer Lesara bags more funding. Link
  • The Black Tux grabs $25M to dress men to the nines. Link
  • Trillenium takes virtual reality into online shopping. Link

International:

  • Ikea moves forward with plans to enter India. Link
  • Russian fashion market’s plunge turns heat on global brands. Link
  • Swatch CEO plays down China turbulence. Link
  • John Lewis to start selling Apple Watch across UK. Link

Mobile/Emerging Tech:

  • Sotheby’s auction coming to an art app near you. Link
  • Everything to know about Apple’s event. Link
  • U.S Consumers now spend more time in apps than watching TV. Link
  • A closer look at the fancy new Hermes Apple Watch band. Link
  • Starbucks app update raises bar on mobile payments. Link
  • eBay’s apps get a refresh. Link
  • Android Pay goes live, Google Wallet becomes cash swap app. Link
  • Amazon dumps the Fire phone. Link
  • Apple wants to sell you an iPhone for $32 per month. Link

WEEKLY INDUSTRY BRIEF: 9.8.2015

Happy Tuesday! Industry news from the last week is below.  Sources in the hyperlinked text after the headline. Have a great week!

Brand/Retailer:

  • Modcloth to open first store, hire fashion director. Link
  • Uber to unveil big ecommerce delivery program with retailers in the fall. Link
  • Nike wants to win winter with a $185 hoodie. Link
  • ASOS Chief and founder to step down after 15 years. Link  
  • Net-a-porter founder Natlie Massenet resigns. Link
  • Fila teams up with Urban Outfitters for exclusive line. Link
  • Etsy’s pulling the plug on Grand St. at the end of September. Link
  • TrueCar helps Sam’s Club get into the car business. Link
  • Amazon Dash button will now be effectively free. Link
  • BagSnob celebrates 10 years with multi-brand ecommerce launch. Link
  • High street retailers are launching own-brand beauty lines. Link
  • Amazon, Google, Netflix team up for royalty-free video. Link
  • Google wants to deliver your groceries. Link
  • Staples, Office Depot certify compliance with FTC information re Link
  • Uniqlo to open brand showroom as first Chicago store. Link
  • Online back to school shopping increases 12%. Link
  • Why fashionable millennials are flocking to online retailers like Everlane for wardrobe basics. Link

Marketing/Social:

  • Facebook makes it easier to optimize ad campaigns based on conversions. Link
  • Estimote creates an indoor location system using beacons and “nearables.” Link
  • Facebook advances Bazaar marketplace ambitions. Link
  • See the first brands to test Facebooks iAd-like mobile format. Link
  • Reebok heads back to the gym with new marketing blitz. Link
  • Emily Weiss, blogger to social brand builder. Link
  • From TheFacebook.com to one billion users in a single day. Link
  • Facebook’s Josh Miller named White House ‘Director of Product.’ Link
  • Buzzfeed is laying groundwork for major expansion in Los Angeles. Link
  • Why growth hacking is the next big thing in marketing. Link

Startups:

  • Paris-based online consignment retailer, Vestiaire Collective, raises $37M to advance US growth. Link
  • Amazon buys streaming video startup Elemental. Link
  • What’s driving VC firms to take bigger risks. Link
  • Why AOL bought Millennial Media for $238M. Link
  • NewsCred nabs $42M to help marketers act as publishers. Link

International:

  • Alibaba, JD.com target rural China for ecommerce growth. Link
  • Myer partnership to bring Topshop into 20 stores across Australia. Link
  • UK retailers post worst sales decline since financial crisis. Link
  • Retailers prod China for lower prices after devaluation. Link
  • Uber closes in on $1.2B funding for China. Link
  • Twitter unlocks promoted tweets in 167 more countries. Link

Mobile/Emerging Tech:

  • Amazon Prime expands video downloads to iOS and Android platforms. Link
  • Thanks to Apple Pay, contactless payments will grow by 100% in 2015. Link
  • Forget clothing labels, musicians all want to move into apps. Link
  • Macy’s Backstage focuses on mobile to compete with discount retailers. Link
  • Facebook messenger tops YouTube in app popularity. Link
  • Amazon wants to sell you a $50 tablet this Fall. Link

Weekly Industry Brief: 7.27.2015

Hello! Industry news from the last week.  Sources in the hyperlinked text after the headline. Have a great week!

Brand/Retailer:

  • Amazon Prime credit card will give you 5% cash back. Link
  • AirBnB launches new product to attract business travelers. Link
  • Apple profit up 38% but iPhone sales disappoint Wall Street. Link
  • Amazon spikes 14% after it reports surprise Q2 profit and better-than-expected revenue. Link
  • Etsy attracting more short sellers. Link
  • Moda Operandi’s co-founder is shutting down Tinker Tailor. Link
  • Rocket Internet says portfolio value is up 47% from IPO. Link
  • Everlane appoints former Gap creative director Rebekka Bay as head of product and design. Link
  • Comcast in talks with multiple new media firms. Link
  • Inside the fight for survival at Gap, J.Crew and Abercrombie. Link
  • Neiman Marcus partners with The RealReal to expand in-store consignment. Link
  • Macy’s to expand same-day delivery to new markets. Link
  • Stores like Bass Pro Shops and Restoration Hardware adding bars and restaurants to encourage lingering. Link
  • Dolce & Gabbana launches capsule collection on Net-a-porter. Link
  • Limited Too is back for millennial moms and their tweens. Link
  • Nordstrom launches personal shopping service for women under Trunk Club brand. Link
  • Amazon showrooming forces stores to go digital on price displays. Link
  • Converse wants chucks to feel like Nikes. Link
  • Inside Mercantile, J.Crew’s bet on cheaper clothes. Link
  • Tory Burch to launch Tory Sport. Link

Marketing/Social:

  • The Gap forms partnerships with companies from Birch Box to Virgin Hotels to boost business. Link
  • YouTube offers a solution to the vertical video problem. Link
  • Meerkat will now let you live-stream video from GoPro. Link
  • Print Renaissance: independent fashion magazines in an increasingly digital world. Link
  • Forever 21 turns your Instagram photos into real-time, real life portraits. Link
  • Victoria’s Secret ranks first in social popularity. Link
  • Nordstrom goes big with rooftop Instagram installation to promote sale. Link
  • YouTube chief pushes ahead with subscriptions despite questions. Link
  • Twitter introduces event-based ad targeting. Link

Startups:

  • eBay acquires San Francisco-based consignment, Twice. Link
  • Jet.com uses clever tactic to save money. Link

International:

  • Starbucks to launch mobile ordering in UK. Link
  • Taylor Swift to sell clothing on JD.com for Chinese shoppers. Link
  • How Burberry is building its Japan business. Link
  • F21 Red is coming to Canada. Link
  • eBay-backed Asian ecommerce company Giosis lands $82M in funding. Link
  • Facebook and other tech giants expand internet access in Africa. Link
  • From jewelry to hotels, Hong Kong business feel China’s pain. Link

Mobile/Emerging Tech:

  • New York Times will offer free articles on the Starbucks app starting next year. Link
  • Number of mobile retail websites using responsive design more than doubles since 2014. Link
  • Starbucks joins with Lyft on loyalty program in app. Link
  • Apple Watch to be sold at Best Buy. Link
  • Apple Music, iTunes and App Store suffer outages. Link

WEEKLY INDUSTRY BRIEF: 3.9.2015

Happy Monday! Check out the industry news from the last week.  All sources can be found in the hyper-linked text after the headline.

Retailer + Brand News:

  • Etsy files for IPO. Link
  • Barneys New York raises ecommerce ante with site relaunch. Link
  • Will Target’s new CEO energize the retailer? Link
  • Rachel Zoe launching a subscription box service. Link
  • Kate Spade wants to sell furniture. Link
  • Fab officially finds a new owner. Link
  • Google introduces insurance shopping site. Link
  • Abercrombie’s style turnaround will take time. Link
  • Nike is opening a clearance store in NYC. Link
  • Bloomingdale’s to open outlet store in Upper West side this fall. Link
  • Farfetch raises $86M at $1B valuation. Link
  • Activewear firms on the run to catch up online. Link
  • Best Buy announces first buyback since 2012 as profit jumps. Link
  • Google confirms plans for wireless service. Link
  • Apple’s addition to the Dow is a win for tech stocks. Link
  • Online denim and basics brand Ayr launches $1 home try-ones to help win customers. Link
  • Nordstrom’s multi-billion dollar plan for ecommerce domination. Link

Social Media + Marketing:

  • WalMart parts ways with Google local shopping ads. Link
  • Instagram rolls out new carousel ads. Link
  • Instagram lets ads be clickable. Link
  • Nextdoor social network digs deep into neighborhoods. Link
  • Apple may pull its ads from Google Search. Link
  • Publishers love Whatsapp’s potential but struggle with execution. Link
  • How one company convinced Anthony Bourdain to shill as it rebrands scotch. Link
  • Pinterest narrows ad targeting, tests animated pins. Link
  • Google expanding the use of mobile as web search signal. Link
  • Twitter’s new plan to placate Wall Street. Link
  • Why marketers are embracing Oculus and virtual reality. Link

Start-ups:

  • App search engine Quixey confirms $60M round. Link
  • Dash Hudson raises $1M to beat the Instagram shopping conundrum. Link
  • Delivery startup Shyp wants to make returns painless. Link
  • Meet Vive, the ClassPass for blowouts. Link
  • Square, the payment start-up, bolsters its services for small businesses. Link

International:

  • [APAC]
    • Amazon opens store on Alibaba’s TMall in China. Link
    • Alibaba expands in Silicon Valley with first U.S. data center. Link
  • [AU]
    • Abercrombie & Fitch to close Australian stores. Link
    • Myer’s new British CEO gets a tough welcome from investors. Link
  • [CA]
    • Nordstrom treads carefully with launch of second Canadian store. Link
  • [EU]
    • J. Crew’s international expansion push lands in Paris. Link

Mobile, Tablet, + Wearables:

  • Apple Watch and new MacBook announcement from Apple’s Spring Forward event. Link
  • WalMart expects customers to adopt mobile payments. Link
  • Sephora’s commitment to digital beauty leadership includes beacons and augmented reality. Link
  • Domino’s makes ordering on-the-go even easier with smartwatch integration. Link
  • Joe Fresh launches app. Link
  • SXSW to have a thousand beacons to help attendees connect. Link
  • MasterCard CMO on new mobile “priceless surprises” and Apple Pay. Link
  • Wearable tech is the next big opportunity in pro sports. Link
  • Apple Pay on the Apple Watch is smarter than you think. Link
  • Five takeaways for marketers from mobile world congress. Link

Other

  • Why so many people are suddenly wearing $600 Canada Goose coats. Link
  • How four women in an RV plan to change young girls’ lives. Link
  • G Adventures founder on how travel can make you a better leader. Link

Etsy Wholesale: The Growing Trend of Bringing Online Offline

As recorded in yesterday’s weekly industry round up, Etsy officially launched its wholesale business. Coming out of beta, the program enables small boutiques to purchase Etsy products to sell in their brick-and-mortar businesses.

According to Etsy’s official announcement post, if accepted into the program the makers (called “sellers”) pay a $100 fee at start followed by a 3.5% transaction fee paid to Etsy for all future purchase orders. For makers having trouble getting in front of the right independent shops, this is an amazing opportunity.  Etsy will essentially do all of the heavy lifting of marketing, PR, and tech systems that facilitate the order.  Similarly, small boutiques and shops can now easily find curated marketplace selections without having to attend trade shows or tirelessly search for that one gem that will delight customers.

My take:  First, the one thing the program doesn’t address (yet) is the big brand partnerships such as West Elm and Nordstrom. I’ve even seen Etsy products show up at Anthropologie stores.  I assume some iteration of this will become part of the program’s roadmap, if not its own program entirely.

Second, Etsy is joining the ranks of other successful online pureplays that are providing an offline experience (Birchbox, NastyGal, Warby Parker) as a complement to their core business. It speaks loudly to the current customer demand for tangible, IRL (in real life) experiences that engage more than just the sense of vision.  Online can (currently) only go so far and while pureplays have cried “old school” in the face of traditional retail, they are now returning to the basics of what it means to provide customers with more than just a transaction. This doesn’t mean throwing innovation in the garbage, it is just the same thing retailers had to do when customers went online: adapt or die.

Etsy is right to adapt.

Some coverage from around the web:

Etsy Launches ‘Etsy Wholesale,’ a Platform for Retailers (VentureBeat)

Etsy Wholesale Launches Out of Beta (Etsy Blog)

Etsy Wants to Get More Sellers’ Goods in Brick-and-Mortar Stores (Fashionista)