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Customers who are keen to using technology have a huge effect on ecommerce business. Those times when customers were thinking whether buying something online is worth the risk have passed. Nowadays, technology helps customers keep track to their online orders. In addition, customers are now able to interact with retailers.

As technology is changing the world of ecommerce, there are certain benefits for both sides. Customers are able to access a range of tools which help them compare prices, get coupons and locate stores, whereas retailers can make their connection with customers stronger and build their brand faster.

Here are some of the ways in which technology is changing ecommerce business:

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Mobile apps are influencing customer/retailer relationship

 

Apps have given retailers the opportunity to connect with their customers. They no longer have to wait for someone to come to their store since businesses can now reach people everywhere. Even if they are not shopping, ads they have on their phones remind them of brands available out there, as an option.

 

Retailers are on customers’ minds more than ever

 

Email notifications are becoming pushed out more and more by marketers in favor of smart phone push notifications. These features allow marketers command consumer attention more than ever. All of those promotions that were once filtered as spam or scrolled down by consumers are now catching customers’ attention right on their home screens. By doing that, retailers inform their customers about the newest sales and promotions.

 

Personalized customer experience is growing

 

It’s not new information that customers want personally relevant shopping experience. What is new is the fact that technology is making personalization standard. These marketing methods are good for those who want to build a loyal customer base. Ecommerce sites are starting to realize that they need to adapt to the new customer service standards which are being set by technological improvements.That can be done by servicing customers on various channels- email, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and all other channels that are being used by customers to connect with brands.

 

Customers like the convenience of lower prices and faster delivery

 

With the increased demand for convenience, same-day deliveries pose new challenges for retailers. It is not at all cheap to put a driver behind a wheel for the same-day delivery. Due to that, online stores may encounter the need to make their price tags higher. But, technology comes to the rescue. In future, such deliveries could be done by drones or automated vehicles. Sites like Amazon have already started to use drones for their deliveries. Those sites that want to gain competitive edge offer their customers faster deliveries with lower prices.

 

Small businesses are taking over

 

The future for small businesses is looking bright, especially for those jumping into the ecommerce market. Consumers are now able to discover brands they have never heard of through their smart phones and social media. Thrift shops can now set up an online shop and offer global access to their products.

 

Technology is changing our lives more and more every day. Social media, mobile and cloud technology gives the opportunity to entrepreneurs to get their businesses off the ground faster or even start up a business from home. Those retailers who want to stay at the top or get there need to start thinking of using all the benefits Internet and technology has to offer.

 


Just like the iPhone, the Apple Watch is estimated to have taken the lion’s share of revenue in the smartwatch market last quarter.

While Strategy Analytics estimated that 5.2 million units were shipped last quarter, research firm Canalys put the figure higher at around 6 million units. This helped Apple generate over US$2.6 billion in revenue, which constituted nearly 80-percent of the total smartwatch revenue and a year-on-year growth of 12-percent.

Canalys attributed the Apple Watch’s best quarter performance to the Series 1’s lower entry price point and an increased emphasis on fitness features. Overall, Apple is estimated to have shipped 11.9 million Apple Watches for 2016 with a market share of 50-percent. The imminent launch of Android Wear 2.0 and popularity of Samsung’s Gear S3 smartwatches may erode Apple’s lead in the smartwatch market this year.

Apple has hired an industry veteran to head its Apple TV business.

According to Bloomberg, Timothy Twerdahl, former Amazon Fire TV,  joined Apple earlier this month as a vice president for product marketing. Twerdahl has a wealth of experience in internet-connected TV devices; he was the General Manager and Director of Amazon’s Fire TV business since 2013. Prior to his career at Amazon, he also worked as an executive at Netflix and later as a Vice President at Roku.

The hiring of Twerdahl allows Pete Distad, who previously held the position, to focus on Apple’s content deal efforts. These moves suggest that Apple is renewing its focus on the Apple TV business, which contributed more than 5-percent of sales in 2016.

Google’s Chrome browser has always been open source on Android and PC, but never available on iOS. This is because Apple demands that browsers use its own WebKit platform instead of their own rendering engines, so Google can’t just use its typical code base for iOS Chrome. However, that’s all changing today, as Google has just added the iOS Chrome code into Chromium.

Not only should this speed up the development of Chrome for iOS, Google also points out that as all of the company’s usual Chromium tests now apply to the iOS code, it’ll also be easier to implement cross-platform features, which means more frequent updates that will help the iOS browser more closely match its Android counterpart.

Less than two weeks ago, mobile app analytics firm App Annie estimated that Pokémon GO generated US$950 million from players around the world last year. Well, it doesn’t take long for the mobile game app to cross the US$1 billion mark, according to app analytics firm SensorTower.

SensorTower estimates that Pokémon GO has surpassed US$1 billion in worldwide gross revenue on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. Considering that the game was launched barely seven months ago, it’s really impressive! In comparison, Clash Royale managed to generate about US$550 million revenue in the first seven months.

Although daily revenue has been decreasing since late July, SensorTower expects consumer spending to pick up in the coming weeks and months as Ninantic announces new events and major updates for Pokémon GO.

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PayPal processed a total of USD 31 billion in mobile payment volume in the fourth quarter of 2016, according to the company’s latest financial report.

This figure represents an increase of 53% over the same period in 2015. Mobile payments represented 31% of the company’s USD 99 billion in payment volume in Q4.

Venmo, the company’s social payments platform, processed USD 5.6 billion in total payment volume, up 126 % from the same period in 2015.

PayPal said that in the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday, it processed more than USD 2 billion in mobile payments, accounting for one-third of total payment volume for the period.

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Global spend via mobile wallets is expected to rise by nearly 32% to USD 1.35 trillion, a new study from Juniper Research has found.

The study, Mobile Wallets: Service Provider Analysis, Market Opportunities & Forecasts, has found that spend is currently concentrated in the Far East & China, due primarily to the success of Alipay and WeChat. However, it claimed that moves by key players such as PayPal and Apple to offer wallets which can be used both instore and online means that wallets will increasingly become the default payment mechanism in other markets.

PayPal’s decision to introduce an HCE (Host Card Emulation) NFC solution to enable POS payments as a key disruptive moment has proven to be a successful hit in the wallet wars, the study notes. According to the research, this – allied to the burgeoning success of its social payments subsidiary Venmo – places PayPal in pole position to capitalise on the increased demand for mobile wallets.

Additionally, the research argued that the implementation of the PSD2 (Payment Services Directive 2) legislation should spur further competition within the European wallet space, with existing players poised to introduce additional services to complement their payment offerings.

However, it warned that outside emerging markets, remaining mobile network operator wallet ventures were unlikely to gain traction. According to research author Dr Windsor Holden, “Network operators remain wedded to offline payments based on an NFC SIM card, at a time when more agile competitors are deploying integrated HCE wallets that also enable online usage.

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Amazon and PayPal have discussed the possibility that the online retail company to support PayPal payments at checkout.

Amazon offers credit and debit cards, gift cards, and Amazon.com store cards as payment methods. Customers can also link their checking accounts to the site to make quick purchases.

PayPal grew to 197 million active users at the end of 2016. According to the company’s data, each of those accounts averaged 31 transactions in the preceding 12 months.

Amazon Payments can be used by merchants to facilitate payments, and by customers to make those payments. In many cases, the merchants that use Amazon Payments to facilitate purchases also offer customers PayPal.

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Facebook has obtained an e-payments license from the Central Bank of Ireland, signalling that the ability to pay people through the Messenger app (already available in the US) could soon be coming to Europe.

 

The Central Bank of Ireland’s approval of the payments license was authorised to Facebook Payments International Limited (FBPIL) in October 2016 for “e-money issuance” and “payment services.” TechCrunch reports, cited by businessinsider.com. As a member of the European Union, passporting rights mean that the Irish license would apply throughout the other 27 EU member states.

 

Currently, the payment service only works in the US. It allows customers to send money to friends via the Messenger app, a feature which it has recently been promoting. It has been reported that the social network will soon be adding payments to businesses, as well as friends, via the app.

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Google has announced a big update to Google Play Music. The update brings machine learning to the table in an effort to figure out what music you like based on what you are doing. The machine learning algorithm takes into account your location, activity, weather and playlists to personalize the music for where you are and what you are doing. The new updates roll out this week on Android, iOS, and the web.

 

The rollout will be global with 62 countries eventually getting the new music features. The update also brings improved music recommendations with contextual tools available that power other Google products. These features are opt-in and those that sign up will get personalized music for where you are and why you are listening. That means if you are relaxing at home, you will get an optimized playlist and if you are at work you will get a playlist customized for that location.

 

The update also makes it easier to get motivational music for your workout at the gym. Play Music has a new home screen that puts your favorite music at the top of the screen. Google says the more the new machine learning algorithms get to know you, the better the music selections will be. The updated app also keeps a playlist for offline listening ready to go. The tunes you listened to recently are packed into an offline playlist ready to go when you lose signal.

 

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Google says that it wants the perfect music to find you with this update. The exact time frame for the rollout of the new features is unknown. The rollout is starting this week, but Google isn’t clear on if the rollout is going on with all 62 countries at the same time.