Amazon Prime Spending

Amazon’s secret weapon (no, it’s not drones)

By on December 17, 2013 at 3:20 PM.

Amazon’s secret weapon (no, it’s not drones)

A new report from market research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners reveals Amazon’s not-so-secret secret weapon. The weapon itself — Amazon Prime — is hardly a secret, of course, but CIRP’s new study has seemingly uncovered just how big Prime is for Amazon’s business. According to CIRP’s study, which surveyed 300 Amazon Prime subscribers who made purchases over a three-month period ending in November, Prime account holders shop on Amazon twice as often as non-Prime Amazon customers. More importantly, they spend more than twice as much — CIRP found that Prime customers spend an average of $1,340 per year with Amazon while non-Prime shoppers spend $650 annually. More →

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Google Barge Construction Stopped

Google barge plans run aground

By on December 10, 2013 at 11:10 AM.

Google barge plans run aground

Google’s plan to invade the shores of major American cities with floating retail outlets has hit a snag. CNET has learned that construction of Google’s barges has been put “on hiatus” in San Francisco after both the Coast Guard and at least one other public safety agency raised concerns about the company’s plans. Brad McCrea, director of regulatory affairs for the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission, tells CNET that the Coast Guard has requested some design changes to the interior of Google’s barges and that Google will likely finish building the boats by the end of spring in 2014. McCrea also says that his commission is investigating whether Google will need to a permit to run floating retail stores off the city’s coastline.

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Apple Store iBeacons

iBeacons invade the Apple Store

By on December 6, 2013 at 9:15 AM.

iBeacons invade the Apple Store

Apple’s new iBeacon technology has tremendous potential in the retail space. Retailers can use the technology, which allows for the creation of a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon that emit signals iOS 7-powered devices will automatically react to, for a variety of important functions ranging from discount notifications to tracking consumer habits. There’s also a darker side to iBeacons, should the technology be misused. While a handful of companies have already begun adopting the technology in their stores, The Associated Press on Friday reported that Apple itself will now be rolling iBeacons out in its 256 U.S. retail stores beginning immediately. To coincide with the move, the Apple Store app for iOS has been updated to support iBeacons and related notifications. Screenshots of the new iBeacon alert configuration screens from 9to5Mac follow below. More →

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What Are The Google Barges

Google’s mystery boats will reportedly be floating retail outlets

By on December 2, 2013 at 6:45 PM.

Google’s mystery boats will reportedly be floating retail outlets

We might not know the true purpose of Google’s mystery barges until they finally open up to the public, but yet another report has called into question whether or not Google has been misdirecting the media with its official statements. SFGate uncovered a budget report that not only reveals the $35 million cost of launching the three barges, but also the apparent intent of the launch: “floating retail store[s].” More →

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Cyber Monday 2013 Sales

Big Cyber Monday sales jump shows how the world is going mobile

By on December 2, 2013 at 4:50 PM.

Big Cyber Monday sales jump shows how the world is going mobile

Cyber Monday has only existed for a the better part of a decade, but it is already beginning to rival Black Friday. Bloomberg reports that Cyber Monday sales have jumped 19% over last year, setting December 2nd up to be “the biggest online shopping day of 2013.” Mobile traffic now accounts for 30% of all participating retailers’ web traffic as well. According to PayPal, 16% of all purchases made using the popular online payment service were from mobile devices. IBM also chimed in with some interesting statistics: Customers generally prefer to use smartphones when browsing for things to buy but prefer to use tablets when it comes time to make the actual purchase. More →

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Black Friday Sales

A chilling start for the shopping season

By on December 2, 2013 at 7:55 AM.

A chilling start for the shopping season

According to National Retail Federation, shoppers spent about $1.7 billion less during the Thanksgiving weekend than they did in 2012. The sluggish weekend was anticipated, because Amazon and Walmart had started relatively aggressive promotions well before Black Friday. Nevertheless, the NRF numbers leave the fate of this winter shopping season very much up in the air. According to group, the number of people shopping either online or in the real world ticked up 1% over the last year’s period. But weekend spending dropped by a rather sharp 16 bucks to $407.55 per consumer. More →

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Walmart Black Friday Tablet Sales

Walmart reports hot Black Friday tablet sales led by iPad mini

By on November 29, 2013 at 4:55 PM.

Walmart reports hot Black Friday tablet sales led by iPad mini

Walmart on Friday announced that its 2013 Black Friday campaign has been a smashing success, with the store delivering “the biggest shopping day of the season,” even though not all its online customers were happy after Walmart’s website experienced some snafus. The retail store revealed that over 1 million customers took advantage of the One-Hour Guarantee promotion offered on 21 products this year, while the company said it processed more than 10 million transactions on Thursday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., and its website registered nearly 400 million page views on Thanksgiving Day. In total, more than 22 million customers did their Black Friday shopping at Walmart. More →

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Thanksgiving Day Online Retail Sales Growth

Online retail sales growth slows sharply on Thanksgiving Day

By on November 29, 2013 at 3:45 PM.

Online retail sales growth slows sharply on Thanksgiving Day

IBM reports that Thanksgiving Day online retail sales increased by 11% over last year’s level. Despite the double-digit growth, this is actually a steep drop-off compared to years past. In 2012, Thanksgiving Day online sales increased by 32% over 2011. The pace of growth has thus dropped to just one-third of where it was a year earlier. Is this a sign of soft Black Friday sales to come? We’ll find out soon enough. More →

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Best Buy Black Friday Apple Sale

Best Buy rejects Apple’s Scrooge-like tactics, has big MacBook sale

By on November 29, 2013 at 11:15 AM.

Best Buy rejects Apple’s Scrooge-like tactics, has big MacBook sale

Apple may have given a big “Bah, humbug!” to its American fans this year but that doesn’t mean every Apple retailer has been quite so Scrooge-like with its Black Friday sales. AppleInsider notes that Best Buy is offering significant price cuts for assorted MacBook models for Black Friday this year, including a $200 price cut to the 13-inch MacBook Pro and a $150 price cut to 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Airs. Other Best Buy Black Friday deals for Apple fans include offering the iPhone 5c for just $48 with a two-year contract; a free iPhone 4s with a two-year contract; and the iPad 2 for just $300.

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iTunes Gift Card Discounts

The one deal every Apple device owner should take advantage of

By on November 29, 2013 at 10:05 AM.

The one deal every Apple device owner should take advantage of

There are thousands of deals on tech and gadgets this holiday season. Some are pretty awful, others are jaw-dropping, but there’s only one deal that each and every person who owns an Apple device should be taking advantage of right now without even giving it a second thought. If you own an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, iMac, MacBook or any other computing device Apple makes, third-party apps aren’t just an option that enhances your experience, they’re a requirement that can transform your device with each new download. And since you’re already spending money on apps, games and music for your devices, why not spend less money and get even more content?

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Apple Black Friday

A dark Black Friday for Apple fans

By on November 29, 2013 at 8:55 AM.

A dark Black Friday for Apple fans

A report from earlier this week suggested that Apple’s Black Friday deals would be even worse this year than they are typically, which would be an impressive feat considering how slim Apple always keeps its Black Friday discounts. Apple was planning to ditch its holiday discounts entirely, the report claimed, and instead offer Apple Store gift cards of varying value to customers who purchase Apple wares on Friday. The deals went live in Australia as expected, but then we saw a glimmer of hope as Apple’s typical Black Friday discount deals went into effect across Europe. But alas, Apple’s U.S. online store has been updated and the gift card deals have been confirmed. More →

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Black Friday Guide

Five great free apps to make Black Friday less painful

By on November 28, 2013 at 10:20 AM.

Five great free apps to make Black Friday less painful

To some, the idea of trekking out on Black Friday to claw past thousands of rabid shoppers for deep discounts on various wares is nausea inducing. To others, the spoils are worth the cost. For those planning to suit up on Friday and chase after the various doorbuster deals retailers are making available across the country, the Associated Press has put together a list of five free apps for Android and the iPhone that might help make this Black Friday just a touch less painful than Black Fridays past. Among them are RetailMeNot, which helps shoppers find coupons and hot deals at nearby stores; RedLaser, which allows users to scan items in a store to find better prices from rival shops and online retailers; and Flipp, which makes it easy to find and look through promotional fliers from a wide range of local retailers. The full list along with links to download each app can be found in the Associated Press’ report, which is linked below in our source section.

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