‘State of Ecommerce’ News Overview March 2017
March brought e-retailers new ad and shipping options! Here are a few industry updates for e-commerce business owners.
If you’re familiar with Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), then Fedex Fulfillment shouldn’t be too new a concept for you. Fedex Fulfillment was introduced to directly compete with FBA and to keep Fedex competitive in the trend to e-commerce. This FBA alternative is targeting to small/medium sized businesses, and companies that aren’t selling on Amazon.
“It features what FedEx touts as ‘one of the industry’s latest same-day fulfillment cut-off times, two-day ground shipping to the majority of the U.S. population, and the capabilities for a hassle-free returns process’.”
Introduced in February 2017, the process includes companies keeping inventory at Fedex warehouses, where shipments are sent directly to customers in custom boxes without the Fedex logo. Also, because Fedex isn’t a retailer, they’re unlikely to see what products are selling well and start selling those products themselves. This could take away Amazon’s edge in competitiveness.
Facebook Introduces Its New Ad Format: Collections
Facebook’s new ad format, Collections, is allowing retailers to show off a lot more relevant content to interested consumers. Initially, the ad leads with a video or image, and then four product images below the first image. If an individual clicks on the ad, the ad expands to take up the entire screen. However, it displays up to 50 products to the consumer, not just the product initially shown. The consumer can then click on the product they are interested in, and they are taken to the advertisers app or website to make the purchase.
This new way of displaying “collections” of products, allows retailers to showcase more products. It also gives consumers a new shopping experience through ads.
Also new with this feature are analytics for outbound clicks. Not only are clicks on the ads tracked, but clicks to the business’ website are also counted.
Instagram Shopping Has Been Expanded
Much like the ‘Buyable Pins’ on Pinterest, Instagram is offering a ‘Click to Shop’ option for retailers to utilize for Instagram followers. A business can post a photo to Instagram with the shopping feature. This adds a “Tap to View” button below the image. If a user clicks on the button, a showcase of up to five products and prices are displayed for the user. After that, the user can select “Shop Now” and be taken directly to the merchants page to make a purchase.