Instacart Pricing Change Leading to Threats of a Shopper Boycott

| Mike O'Brien

Instacart, the same-day grocery delivery company used by many grocers, is dealing with customer ire as freelance shoppers fulfilling the orders are passing up some jobs due to a change in the pricing structures. Also a number of shoppers have taken to Twitter to call for a boycott of the service due to a drop in their wages.

Kroger Finds Its Voice … Ordering

| Mike O'Brien

Grocery giant Kroger is adding voice ordering to its online arsenal, interestingly hitching its wagon to the Google Assistant voice app and not to Amazon’s Echo, at six of its associated brands, the company announced. See what else Kroger is up to as well as other tech skirmishes in the escalating online grocery wars.

Amazon Expands Free Shipping for the Holidays, Hires More Drivers

| Mike O'Brien

Pouring more water into its moat, Amazon has totally eliminated shipping charges this holiday season, removing the $25 threshold for non-Prime members on items ordered in time for Christmas delivery. Amazon is also hiring and managing thousands of seasonal delivery drivers to handle the holiday crush.

Target Blows Out Free Two-Day Delivery Ahead of the Holidays

| Mike O'Brien

In the never-ending pursuit of Amazon and seeking separation from other foes like Walmart, Target has announced the availability of same-day delivery in 46 states ahead of the peak holiday season from Thanksgiving through Christmas, while also eliminating its $35 order threshold for free two-day shipping as of Nov. 1.

Toys R Us, Geoffrey Looking to Come Back Again

| Mike O'Brien

Toys R Us, the on-again, off-again toy retailer, is looking for another reboot, less than four months after closing its remaining stores, according to investors that acquired its assets out of bankruptcy court.

When Does an Urban Fulfillment Center Model Make Sense?

| Brendan Heegan

While Amazon can spend $21.7 billion on shipping to meet growing customer expectations, everyone else can’t and ecommerce entrepreneurs need to develop a well-thought-out strategy to address evolving demands. You need to consider these four factors before investing in the urban fulfillment center trend.

Target Reports Ecommerce Growth of 41% in Q2

| Daniela Forte

Target reported a 41% increase in ecommerce sales during the second quarter, with overall revenue increasing 7%. Comp sales were up 6.5% in the quarter, the strongest showing since 2005, driven by a 6% growth in store traffic. Here are some opportunities Target plans to focus on in the future.

Half of U.S. Consumers Visiting Amazon During Prime Day Experienced Issues

| Mike O'Brien

A survey by JDA Software found that more than half of U.S. consumers – 52% – ran into technical difficulties during Prime Day. Of that group, 27% either gave up without making a purchase or bought less than they had planned. Amazon is also facing allegations of raising prices on some products, with the FTC looking into it.