ECOMMERCE: Shah also said that the shopping features won’t be included in Instagram ads (for now). But you better believe that Instagram imagines that commerce will morph into a big business down the line, either via ads or some type of cut of sales. Either way, these moves have been a long time coming for an industry that has been talking about this possibility for years.
MEDIA: Meanwhile, digital video increased 51 percent from $2.6 billion in 2015 to $3.9 billion. When only looking at mobile video, spending for smartphone and tablet ads represented a little more than half of total online video spending, or $1.6 billion. Retail was No. 1 when it came to the industries that were the biggest spenders on digital ads, generating 21 percent of total spending.
ECOMMERCE: According to the study, large physical merchants are expected to see their traffic decrease from 63 percent of consumers last year to 59 percent this year. Specifically, shopping malls will have a drop in traffic from 53 percent to 50 percent, while independent stores outside of malls will decrease from 42 percent to 38 percent. Based on the numbers, it’s clear that the internet will be the go-to destination for holiday shopping this season.
ECOMMERCE: With iOS 10, Apple has made it very easy for brands to leverage iMessage to earn social currency and tap directly into consumer emotion. These two key elements drive contagion and, in turn, loyalty. iPhone users are now in the discovery phase of the newest iMessage features. Brands should be actively experimenting with branding and, where appropriate, looking ahead to the ecommerce potential.
ECOMMERCE: Although Amazon has been seeing its fair share of biased reviews, this doesn’t mean that the reviews still don’t work. In addition, you, as an independent ecommerce professional, still have some pull next to Amazon, due to no one ruining the system with free gifts for reviewers. Just take a look at Dollar Shave Club and Duluth Trading Company, each of which have thousands of four and five start reviews, without the bias.
BRAND: Prophet's BRI study measures brands against four dimensions to define relevance: customer obsession, ruthless pragmatism, pervasive innovation, and distinctive inspiration. These dimensions are made up of 16 attributes, which measure brand characteristics like "meets an important need in my life" or "makes my life easier." Prophet says the data shows that customer experience is critical to achieving relevance, with each of the top 50 getting "delivers a consistent experience" as one of their top five attributes.
DATA: From that beginning, we worked with Ogilvy to determine how we could align our brand mission to the things in society that people really care about right now. We were looking for a cultural tension that would make sense to most people. During our campaign research, we uncovered a lot of news stories, surveys, and other data that supported the idea that life at home still hadn't returned to normal since the 2008 recession. In fact, it became apparent that people were living a new normal—one where it was harder to “make it” than ever before.
MEDIA: The evolving nature of the reporting lines reflects how quickly Snap has grown, as well as the multipronged supervisory roles of someone like Mr. Khan. The company’s workforce has expanded to more than 1,000 from around 200 in early 2015. That growth has largely been in the sales and engineering teams, where the company has multiple offices in different cities around the world. It’s a growth that has mirrored Snap’s desire in 2015 to transform itself into a true business.
BRAND: Take REI, for example. The outdoor clothing and gear co-op was the top CQ-ranked brand overall and also scored the highest on our measure of respect. Awareness is up over the past year, too: Consumer mentions of the brand increased by 270% from 2015. Last year REI announced it was closing all its stores on Black Friday to encourage employees and consumers to spend the day outdoors with their families and friends.
DATA: Incorporating data from Weather Company, which IBM bought in 2015, Watson Ads helps brands offer relevant one-to-one brand experiences built on new consumer and product insights uncovered by Watson. Consumers can now ask Watson for Campbell Soup recipe ideas with answers built around weather, personal preference, past choices and even groceries on hand.
Last Word: Macy's, the liquidator. Macy's, the flea.
We shopped at department stores because we wanted serendipity, fashion eCommerce is providing a new platform for this consumer behavior. The way that people shop is fundamentally changing and the market is reflecting this in a unique way. For heritage brands who've built strategies around physical retail, these shifts can be difficult to work through, once heavily invested.
Nordstrom (JWN) 👇🏾 and Macy's (M) 👆🏾 are the leaders of a fading family of department stores. Of all of the retail options, these two retailers have best positioned themselves for success in today's market. Macy's is doing so by (1) liquidating real estate assets to prepare for eCommerce consolidation (2) sub-letting storefronts to other brands to offset lost revenue by way of decreasing in-store sales (i.e. the 'flea market strategy.'
The flea market, an icon of shopping in the 1970s where assorted business owners set up shop to hawk their wares. It could have been fancy jewelry or collectible baseball cards, but a trip to the flea market offered an array of choices not found in the typical department store. Sort of sounds like a visit to department store Macy's (M) circa 2016.
Macy's said Monday it will start selling merchandise from Brookstone such as kitchen gadgets, audio technology and other paraphernalia at some 347 stores nationwide and its website for the holiday shopping season. The deal with Brookstone comes on the heels of Macy's opening an Apple (AAPL) shop at its Herald Square flagship store in New York City to sell the latest iPhones, iPads and Apple Watches. Macy's will also make the Apple Watch available at more than 180 stores nationwide and on its website.
Nordstrom has already begun the cycle that Macy's is currently embarking upon. Digital everything! eCommerce! DNVB M&A! However, Amazon's eCommerce adoption is eating into Macy's longterm stabilization efforts (see this tweet). This pivotal holiday season, Amazon is hiring 20% more temporary workers for the holidays and Nordstrom is hiring 4% fewer. As Amazon increases its stronghold in fashion eCommerce and as consumer behavior continues to shift, the outlook for both of these titans will continue crumble under the pressure of swift market shifts.
Struggling department store Macy's (M) may have just had its own moment where it sends important clues to investors. The company shared on Monday that it sold five stores to mall developer General Growth Properties (GGP) for $46 million. Macy's expects to realize a gain of $32 million on the sales in the third quarter.
Macy's deal with GGP is exciting for their balance sheet but devastating everywhere else. Meanwhile, this is emboldening for a company like Amazon who is looking to finish off department store competitors. Analysts speculate that Amazon will begin purchasing asset groupings like GGP's recent acquisition. Grocery is Bezos' focus, right now, but many believe that Amazon will be mall anchor in the next few years. This would theoretically accomplish two things: (1) intensification of pressure on fashion retail incumbents and (2) the addition of accessible 25,000-30,000 sq ft hubs to serve as physical retail and warehousing. Of course, this could accelerate the continued proliferation of Amazon Prime / Prime Now.