Online shopping

Report

How retailers can outdo showrooming with in-store Wi-Fi

Showrooming. Everybody’s heard of it by now — conniving shoppers checking out a product in a retail store, then buying it online later for less. But today it makes more sense for retailers to shift their focus away from this practice and focus on harnessing the shopper’s in-store wireless experience for themselves and their brands. In addition to making mobile-data-hungry customers happy, customer-facing in-store Wi-Fi networks will bring the retailers themselves much value.

One Kings Lane raises $50M to dominate home decor

One Kings Lane, the San Francisco-based home decor site, on Tuesday announced that it had raised a $50 million Series D round, bringing its total amount raised to $117 million. The new funding will go technology, marketing and merchandising, the company said.

Fab redesigns iPad app, optimizes for iPhone 5

Fab says it has “reimagined” its mobile apps, updating its app for the iPad and optimizing it for the iPhone 5. One-third of Fab’s sales come from mobile but it’s looking to when mobile shopping contributes half of its revenue.

EBay updates site to be more personal, Pinterest-like

eBay has redesigned its core shopping experience with a new Pinterest-style home page, better product pages, search functionality and faster payments. The idea is to make the eBay experience more personalized for consumers.

Pinterest rival Fancy gets into group gifting

New York-based social commerce platform Fancy is rolling out a new option that lets users organize group gifts. The startup also announced a new partnership with American Express that it says could mark the beginning of an extended relationship.

Online shopping site Svpply to join eBay East

Online shopping giant eBay today announced that it has acquired New York startup Svpply, which curates products from across the Web. eBay said the acquisition will build on its recent purchase of recommendation engine Hunch to further personalize online shopping experiences.

E-commerce engine BigCommerce raises another $20M

BigCommerce, an e-commerce platform that powers the online stores for 30,000 small- to medium-sized businesses worldwide, is on Wednesday announcing that it has raised $20 million Series B funding from General Catalyst and Floodgate.

When do summer shoppers splurge online?

Online retail sales may slump during the summer, but that doesn’t mean shoppers aren’t occasionally willing to drop the big bucks. New York-based data analytics startup SumAll shares several e-commerce trends for the dog days of summer.

Android owners who buy online goods: Go. Get. Slice

One of the top apps for iOS landed on Android devices today: Slice, a free, online shopping organizer, is now available in the Google Play app store. Slice consolidates online orders, providing one place to look at your purchase history, your spending habits, and real-time package delivery tracking.

Savvy rebrands as Eyeona to help retailers fight Amazon

Pricetector, which launched a price adjustment service called Savvy.com in November, is rebranding under the name Eyeona, as it looks to become an even more useful tool to both consumers and retailers. Eyeona’s goal is to help retailers build a stronger relationship with consumers.

Ingk Labs buys payment platform ORCA to create PayPal rival

Exclusive: Ingk Labs, an IP accelerator in New York City, has purchased payment platform ORCA Inc. and will use it to power a new PayPal competitor called Payz. Ingk Labs is ramping its efforts to rescue and accelerate IP and put it to work in start-ups.

Why it makes sense for Amazon to open its own stores

Amazon is reportedly preparing to dip its toes into the brick-and-mortar retail market with its first boutique test store in the Seattle area. The move, which could face a lot of challenges, makes sense as Amazon extends its buying experience to retail stores.

BlackLocus and the retailing price revolution

The top 20 Internet retailers changed their prices 30 times more often than their peers who had lower sales during the holiday season in 2011, according to BlackLocus, a startup that helps companies set competitive prices online. Its goal is to transform retail pricing with data.

Fab.com: mobile shoppers buy twice as often as web visitors

Design store Fab.com has seen a surge in mobile use since launching mobile apps in October, with 30 percent of traffic now coming in via mobile. But more impressive is the fact that mobile visitors are generating twice as much revenue than visitors to Fab’s website.

EBay adds invoice payments to PayPal with BillSafe acquisition

EBay is continuing its buying spree, snapping up Germany’s BillSafe, a payment-by-invoice provider. The new acquisition will be rolled up into PayPal, which made a minority investment in BillSafe last year and collaborated on a joint online invoice payment solution for e-commerce customers.

Slice brings its online shopping organization app to the iPhone

Slice, the service that organizes online shopping information such as receipts and shipping information, has launched its first iPhone app. There’s no doubt that Slice is solving first-world problems, but it is quite useful: Slice for web has become quite popular since its May launch.

StyleOwner lets fashion bloggers be more than a pretty face

Fashion sites have become huge, but what if the people who spend hours curating fashion and style products online could make money from the experience as well? Enter StyleOwner, a new e-commerce platform that lets anyone in the United States create and run an online boutique.

Next up in Amazon’s world domination: Groceries

It may seem like Amazon.com has conquered every corner of the e-commerce market, but it has its sights on a new vertical to add to its empire: Groceries. Quidsi, the wholly-owned Amazon subsidiary, has launched a new grocery category within its Soap.com website.

1/3 of consumers will spend more online than in-store this year

Despite the threat of online fraud, consumers are increasingly getting comfortable shopping online. ThreatMetrix and the Ponemon Institute did some consumer surveys and found that one-third of people said they plan on spending more online than they do in-store this year.

5 reasons you’re probably wasting time with QR codes

QR codes, those tiny 2D codes are big on is hype, with proponents touting them as the bridge between the offline and online world. But that offline to online bridge is structurally flawed and may be keeping many brands from reaching their audience effectively.

Amazon launches YoYo to make toy-shopping fun

Kids love toys. But the sheer number of toys and games continuously coming out on the market can make toy shopping a big drag for grownups. Amazon.com is launching a new site called YoYo aimed at making the toy shopping experience a bit less overwhelming.

Now profitable, Polyvore strikes a pose as top fashion site

Interactive fashion website Polyvore has officially entered into inflection point territory. The Mountain View, Calif.-based startup, which is backed with $8.2 million in venture capital, has achieved profitable operations and is currently seeing record web traffic, co-founder Jess Lee told me in an interview this week.

Coupons.com raises $200M to meet booming deal demand

Digital coupon company Coupons.com has closed on a $200 million funding round. About half of this round will be used to provide liquidity to early investors and employees at the 13-year-old company, and the rest will be put toward meeting growing demand, CEO Steven Boal said.

How eBay Stopped Being Recession-proof

During the last recession, eBay not only prospered but flourished — not so this time around. Over the past year, eBay has de-emphasized auctions and put more focus on “buy-it-now,” fixed-price sales. In some ways, the strategy makes sense. But the move away from the freewheeling bazaar and into tighter competition with the likes of Amazon has resulted in a drop in traffic.