Ecommerce News Around the Web for April 30, 2010

“Ecommerce News Around the Web” is our weekly review of articles, blog posts and other news items that could interest ecommerce merchants.

Mother’s Day Spending Expected to Increase in 2010 – Retailer Daily

Moms and online retailers will be happy to know that spending for the upcoming Mother’s Day holiday is expected to increase slightly over last year. The National Retail Federation (NRF) is predicting the average person will spend $126.90 on Mother’s Day this year, up 2.4% from $123.89 in 2009. The most popular gift will be flowers, the NRF predicts. Restaurants and jewelers should see a rise as well.

Credit Card Companies Changing Rules on How Debit and Gift Cards Are Processed – Ecommerce Sellers’ Motivators

MasterCard and Discover are changing the rules regarding the processing of debit cards and prepaid gift cards. Under the new rules, if there is a remaining balance on the gift card after purchase, that remaining balance must appear on the customer’s receipt. There are other changes as well.

Visa Reports Q2 Financial Results – Payments News

Visa has announced the financial results of its fiscal second quarter 2010. The GAAP net operating revenue in the fiscal second quarter of 2010 was $2.0 billion, an increase of 19 percent over the prior year. According to Visa, revenue was “driven by strong contributions across all revenue categories, in particular data processing and international transaction revenues.”

LinkedIn Offers Users Ability to Follow Companies – Mashable

LinkedIn is following the lead taken by Facebook and Twitter by making it easier for users to connect with their favorite companies, via the launch of “Follow Company.” This new feature allows users to get notifications about the activities of the companies they follow. Think of it as LinkedIn’s version of a Fan page, but one designed specifically for business.

What Do Customers Buy Online…Really? – Shopster

What do people buy online and what do they buy in brick-and-mortar stores? Online advertising firm Permuto came up with an “infographic” chart that analyzes people’s purchasing habits online as opposed to physical stores.

How to Capitalize on Customer-generated Content – Bazaar blog

Thanks to the social web, consumers no longer just consume information, they now produce it. The term for this is “user-generated content,” and the key question for online businesses is, “What can we do with it?” This article talks about ways to integrate user-generated content to promote your company.

Good Service is Key to U.K. Shoppers Online – eMarketer

In the U.K., consumer experience and level of service are becoming key factors in purchasing decisions. Shoppers are applying similar criteria to online and offline retailers alike, and, guess what? Online stores rank higher than their offline kin.

How ‘Cool’ is Your Company? – Entrepreneur

Today’s companies have to be more than just good at what they sell. Now, they also have to be “cool,” according to this article. It says, when it comes to business, cool equals cash.

Next Generation Mobile Marketing: Turn Phone into POS Device – ClickZ

A company called Mobio Identity Systems is turning your mobile device into a point of sale (POS) purchase machine. The technology works by scanning a bar code using your phone’s camera. Just by pointing your camera at one of these bar codes, you can instantly buy products with a simple click.

Facebook and Privacy: Oh What a Tangled Web We Weave – Forrester

Facebook is changing its privacy policies again, in respect to sharing consumer content with third parties. It didn’t take lawmakers long to catch up and demand changes to the changes. What happens next depends a lot on Facebook.

Online Video Gains Mainstream Momentum – eMarketer

Online video is becoming mainstream. eMarketer estimates that, in 2010, 66.7 percent of U.S. Internet users (147.5 million people) will be watching video online each month. By 2014, that figure is forecast to rise to 77 percent of Internet users, or 193.1 million people.

Improve Conversion Rates and Boost Ecommerce Sales – EDL Consulting

Ecommerce companies, large and small, have an advantage over their brick-and-mortar counterparts, they can reach customers around the globe much easier. To do so more effectively, Drop Ship Access reports that ecommerce websites must attempt to improve their currency conversion rate. One of the best ways to encourage international shoppers to make a purchase is to offer several different payment types.

Ten Dos and Don’ts for Brands on Twitter – Mashable

Brands are beginning to use Twitter for customer service, marketing, even direct response sales. Mashable says there are some “rules” companies should follow, and standards that amount to best practices.

Why Small Businesses Fail on the Web – MarketingProfs Daily Fix

No small business owner wants to think about failure, including merchants that do business online. However, forewarned is forearmed. Jason Teichman, senior vice president of marketing and product management at, talks about where small businesses fail when it comes to digital presence.

eBay ProStores Now Has Analytics – AuctionBytes

eBay ProStores, the ecommerce solutions for small- to medium-sized businesses, recently received an upgrade. It now includes a new web analytics tool that lets merchants get an at-a-glance summary of trends, sales and more, all tabulated in a graphical format. The tool is built-in, so nothing has to be installed.

Paul Chaney

Paul Chaney

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