Multichannel Merchant http://multichannelmerchant.com Driving digital commerce through multiple channels including online, mobile, in-store, and catalog Fri, 18 Apr 2014 18:08:53 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.6.1 MCM Outlook 2014: The State of Operations http://multichannelmerchant.com/opsandfulfillment/warehouse/mcm-outlook-2014-state-operations-17042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mcm-outlook-2014-state-operations http://multichannelmerchant.com/opsandfulfillment/warehouse/mcm-outlook-2014-state-operations-17042014/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 20:42:46 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46533 How are shippers preparing for Holiday 2014? What systems are they looking to add in the fulfillment center? And do merchants really think Amazon has little effect on their business? These questions and more are answered in Multichannel Merchant's MCM Outlook 2014 report on Operations & Fulfillment.

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How are shippers preparing for Holiday 2014? What systems are they looking to add in the fulfillment center? And do merchants really think Amazon has little effect on their business?

Multichannel Merchant’s MCM Outlook 2014 survey was fielded from Feb. 10 to March 10, and drew more than 1,200 respondents.

The above questions and more are answered in Multichannel Merchant’s MCM Outlook 2014 report on Operations & Fulfillment.

Complete the form to download the full report.

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PayEase Awarded Cross-border Payments License http://multichannelmerchant.com/global-2/payments/payease-awarded-cross-border-payments-license-17042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=payease-awarded-cross-border-payments-license http://multichannelmerchant.com/global-2/payments/payease-awarded-cross-border-payments-license-17042014/#comments Thu, 17 Apr 2014 14:04:02 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46545 The issuance of the pilot license has set the historical precedence for PSP in China to process RMB transactions for any overseas merchants and settle funds in the local currency of the merchants' domiciliation or any foreign currency of their choice.

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PayEase Awarded eCommerce Cross-Border Payments License (via PR Newswire)

BEIJING, April 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — The PRC State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) has issued the pilot Cross-Border Payment Licenses to 5 Beijing Payment Service Providers (PSP). The issuance of the pilot license has set the historical…

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The Contact Center Is Your Customer Service Gateway http://multichannelmerchant.com/opsandfulfillment/contactcenters/contact-center-customer-service-gateway-16042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=contact-center-customer-service-gateway http://multichannelmerchant.com/opsandfulfillment/contactcenters/contact-center-customer-service-gateway-16042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 18:14:30 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46507 Quite possibly, your contact center is your company’s unsung hero. But how are ecommerce and omnichannel merchants treating their contact centers? Here’s a snapshot look at Multichannel Merchant’s MCM Outlook 2014 survey.

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MCM-OUTLOOK-2014-logo-print-300-200Quite possibly, your contact center is your company’s unsung hero.

How are ecommerce and omnichannel merchants treating their contact centers? Here’s a snapshot look at Multichannel Merchant’s MCM Outlook 2014 survey, which was fielded from Feb. 10 to March 10 and drew 1,281 respondents.

This digital download looks at the importance of contact center metrics, the growing popularity of live chat and social media, technology upgrades and overhauls, and more.

Click here to download the MCM Outlook 2014 report on contact centers.

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Search and Social Media Snapshot http://multichannelmerchant.com/infographics/search-and-social-media-snapshot-16042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=search-and-social-media-snapshot http://multichannelmerchant.com/infographics/search-and-social-media-snapshot-16042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 16:01:58 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46493 Kenshoo published an infographic today detailing first-quarter performance of paid search and social advertising. The infographic highlights quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year changes for key metrics in both search and social.

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Kenshoo published an infographic today detailing first-quarter performance of paid search and social advertising. The infographic highlights quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year changes for key metrics in both search and social.

[Click to enlarge]

2014Q1_Search_and_Socia_Snapshot_041514-full-size

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QVC To Expand Global Presence To France http://multichannelmerchant.com/global-2/qvc-expand-global-presence-france-16042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=qvc-expand-global-presence-france http://multichannelmerchant.com/global-2/qvc-expand-global-presence-france-16042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:12:59 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46477 With the launch of the new service scheduled for the second quarter of 2015, QVC will expand its global multimedia ecommerce business to seven operations reaching nine countries.

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QVC To Expand European Presence To France (via PR Newswire)

WEST CHESTER, Pa., April 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ – QVC, the global leader in video and ecommerce retail, today announced plans to expand its European presence into France.  With the launch of the new service scheduled for the second quarter of 2015…

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Grainger Reports Record 1Q Results http://multichannelmerchant.com/marketing/b2b/grainger-reports-record-1q-results-16042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=grainger-reports-record-1q-results http://multichannelmerchant.com/marketing/b2b/grainger-reports-record-1q-results-16042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:08:19 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46471 Sales of $2.4 billion increased 5% vs. $2.3 billion in the first quarter of 2013 for the B2B industrial supplies giant.

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Grainger Reports Record Results For The 2014 First Quarter (via PR Newswire)

Reiterates 2014 Sales and EPS Guidance Quarterly Highlights — Sales of $2.4 billion, up 5 percent — March sales up 8 percent, including 1 pp benefit from holiday timing — Operating earnings of $354 million, up 3 percent — EPS of $3.07, up 4 percent…

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Retailers Committed to Protecting Consumer Data http://multichannelmerchant.com/lists/retailers-committed-protecting-consumer-data-16042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=retailers-committed-protecting-consumer-data http://multichannelmerchant.com/lists/retailers-committed-protecting-consumer-data-16042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 13:58:23 +0000 MCM Staff http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46467 NRF pursues establishment of retail information sharing and analysis center.

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hacker-wearing-hoodie-650The National Retail Federation today told a congressional panel that the retail industry is committed to safeguarding and protecting consumer data and information from highly-motivated and sophisticated cybercriminals and hackers.

“Retailers make significant investments every year in order to protect [consumer] data,” NRF Vice President for Retail Technologies Tom Litchford testified. “Collectively, retailers spend billions of dollars annually to safeguard data and fight fraud, as well as hundreds of millions annually on [credit card security] compliance.”

Litchford testified before a field hearing of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies, where he outlined specific steps that the nation’s retailers are pursuing and implementing to identify, prevent and combat cyberattacks.

He described NRF’s steadfast support for immediately transitioning away from fraud-prone credit cards that utilize 1960s technology (magnetic-stripe and signature) to more advanced and secure cards that incorporate a Personal Identification Number or PIN, or Chip and PIN cards that include a computer microchip.

PIN-based cards, along with data encryption and tokenization, would help prevent cybercriminals from monetizing consumer financial information and provide better fraud protection for retailers, banks and consumers than proprietary Europay, MasterCard and Visa or EMV technology that does not require the use of a PIN.

“Chip and PIN technology dramatically reduces the value of any stolen ‘breached’ data for in-store purchases because the payment card data is essentially rendered worthless to criminals,” Litchford said. “The failure of U.S. card networks and banks to adopt such a system in the United States is one reason why cyberattacks on brick-and-mortar retailers have increased.”

Litchford went on to state that the nation’s retailers are pursuing the establishment of a Retail Information Sharing and Analysis Center, or Retail ISAC, that would provide retailers and merchants (NRF members and non-members) with actionable and timely threat intelligence to help identify and mitigate cyber risks.

“The retail industry is in a particularly good position to both benefit from and bring value to information sharing with outside organizations and entities,” Litchford said as he described NRF’s recent interaction with the United States Secret Service, United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team, iSightPartners and the Financial Services ISAC on cyber threats.

“NRF is currently in the planning stages with respect to a final step in the development of the Retail ISAC: the establishment of the technological and operational infrastructure to support a secure portal through which members can share information,” Litchford said. “NRF’s goal is to allow credentialed [Retail ISAC] members to share information of varying levels of sensitivity anonymously, thus allowing the Retail ISAC to act as a repository of critical threat, vulnerability and incident information that is sourced from various members and outside organizations, and to facilitate peer-to-peer collaboration with the sharing of risk mitigation best practices and cybersecurity research papers.”

Acknowledging that there is no silver bullet to combating cybercrime, NRF called on Congress to support the retail industry’s efforts on data security and cybersecurity by passing the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (H.R. 624) or CISPA, which would further encourage businesses and retailers to share information across sectors on cyber threats in real time.

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Mobile and Tablet Traffic Jumps 50% http://multichannelmerchant.com/mobile-tablet-traffic-jumps-50-16042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mobile-tablet-traffic-jumps-50 http://multichannelmerchant.com/mobile-tablet-traffic-jumps-50-16042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 12:19:39 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46463 Data from Wpromote shows smartphone and tablet share of traffic continues to rise at the expense of desktop; now accounts for one-quarter of all web visits.

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Web traffic from mobile and tablet devices jumped 50% over the past year and now accounts for more than a quarter of all visits, according to data from online marketing company Wpromote.

Non-desktop traffic jumped to 27% of visits in the first quarter of 2014, up from 18% during the same period a year earlier. Smartphone traffic increased from 11% to 17%, and tablet traffic increased from 7% to 10%.

Wpromote surveyed traffic to 35 client websites in three general industries: ecommerce, business-to-business and consumer services. The numbers show that desktop web traffic continues to decline, dropping from 88% to 82% to 73% in the first quarter of the past three years.

Mike Mothner, CEO of Wpromote, said the shift means companies should be embracing mobile marketing strategies – such as mobile advertising, responsive design and developing mobile sites that encourage customers to take action on their devices – and planning for the day when mobile overtakes desktop.

“The transition to mobile is just that, and mobile adoption isn’t universal yet,” said Mothner. “Despite this, marketers should constantly ensure that their strategies and tactics are aligned with the transition to mobile. The data shows that mobile overtaking desktop in terms of web traffic is a matter of when, not if.”

Of the three major industries evaluated, B2B customers remain the most reliant on desktop. Seventy percent of ecommerce visitors and 66% of consumer services visitors are using a traditional computer, compared to 83% of B2B site visitors. All industries have seen at least an 8-point decline in desktop traffic as smartphone traffic more than doubled from 2012 to 2014.

The Wpromote study also discovered that more than 12% of all traffic to ecommerce sites comes from tablet devices, the highest of all the industries tracked and nearly triple the 2012percentage.

“Regardless of industry, a 50% increase in smartphone traffic in a year is a strong indicator of consumer preference,” said Mothner. “Marketers should evaluate their strategy in light of changing habits on a regular basis instead of playing catch-up when mobile traffic hits an even larger milestone.”

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4 Biggest Myths About Selling Abroad http://multichannelmerchant.com/global-2/4-biggest-myths-selling-abroad-15042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=4-biggest-myths-selling-abroad http://multichannelmerchant.com/global-2/4-biggest-myths-selling-abroad-15042014/#comments Wed, 16 Apr 2014 01:19:27 +0000 Amine Khechfe http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46453 By knowing what’s true and what’s false about expanding abroad, you’re better equipped to enter the global market with confidence and ease.

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global-shipping-840International selling may look frightening at first glance, but ultimately, the opportunity outweighs the risk. By knowing what’s true and what’s false about expanding abroad, you’re better equipped to enter the global market with confidence and ease.

Here’s the truth: selling internationally isn’t half as scary or complicated as some think, and can open up a significant additional revenue stream. This is especially true when your home economy isn’t doing so well. And with the Internet making it increasingly easy for ecommerce businesses to find an audience, becoming a global powerhouse is literally a “hop, skip and a jump” away.

For all those still on the fence about expanding your business abroad, here are the top four myths about international selling debunked (and a few reasons to put those unfounded fears to rest).

You’ve got to be a big player to sell abroad

Many businesses I consult with assume that international waters are reserved for the likes of Amazon and big-box retailers. But that’s far from the truth! Any business with an online storefront can take its products international.

California-based specialty apparel store The Giant Peach offered international shipping from its inception – and today, global markets comprise roughly a quarter of its online business.

When it comes to finding a global audience, the Internet is a grand equalizer. If you’re having trouble tapping into new countries, try listing on international marketplaces, like Rakuten, to get a leg up.

You’ve got to speak French (or Spanish or Lithuanian) before you expand

One of the biggest misconceptions about selling internationally is that you need to know a second language before you begin. Instead, I always advise small business owners to start small and in their native tongue – that way, they can get their feet wet without getting in over their heads.

For U.S. retailers, Canada is a great entry point into global ecommerce. Then try adding other English-speaking countries like the U.K., Australia and Singapore to the mix. This method of gradually introducing new countries ensures that e-tailers only take on what they can handle at any given moment.

International shipping is complicated and time-consuming

This one is more of a half-myth.

International shipping certainly can be difficult, especially if you don’t have the correct processes in place. But if you do, it really is a piece of cake.

What kind of processes are we talking about? Shipping software, for one, can save businesses time by prefilling international customs forms. It can also sync up with your product inventory and warn you of international shipping bans for certain products (for example, you can’t ship leather goods to Italy or playing cards to Greece).

Another process is transaction management and currency conversions. Software like Miva Merchant can integrate directly with your ecommerce store to manage the international payment process.

There’s no security or visibility in shipping abroad

A lot of people think of international shipping as a shot in the dark: maybe your package will get there, maybe not.

While the reliability of international delivery often depends upon a country’s postal system, there are still a number of options that can provide added security.

For example, most couriers offer package tracking, even to international locations. One option in particular, Priority Mail Express International, not only offers USPS tracking for free, but comes with the added security of a money-back guarantee to select locations and insurance against lost, damaged or missing contents. Speed and price aren’t compromised with this service – packages are delivered within 3 to 5 business days, making it a more affordable option offering peace of mind.

Amine Khechfe is the general manager and cofounder of Endicia.

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Read the April 2014 Operations & Fulfillment Guide http://multichannelmerchant.com/opsandfulfillment/warehouse/read-the-april-2014-operations-and-fulfillment-guide-15042014/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=read-the-april-2014-operations-and-fulfillment-guide http://multichannelmerchant.com/opsandfulfillment/warehouse/read-the-april-2014-operations-and-fulfillment-guide-15042014/#comments Tue, 15 Apr 2014 20:26:27 +0000 Tim Parry http://multichannelmerchant.com/?p=46443 Returns, shipping and delivery, fulfillment, contact centers and more are covered in the latest edition of Multichannel Merchant.

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