Here is a list of product releases and updates for October from companies that offer services to online merchants. There are updates on shipping, mobile returns, voice-activated commerce, payments, and shopping on Instagram.
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Ecommerce Product Releases
Shopping on Instagram now available to BigCommerce merchants. BigCommerce has announced support to enable sales through Instagram. Through a new integration, BigCommerce merchants will have access to shopping on Instagram that allows people to discover, browse, and shop from product posts through Instagram’s iOS and Android apps. Additionally, merchants using Instagram’s new shopping feature gain access to useful channel insights, such as how many fans interacted with product details or clicked “shop now” to visit their store.
Jet.com to launch a grocery brand for millennials. Walmart-owned ecommerce site Jet.com will launch a private label brand, Uniquely J, for the metro millennial. The brand is expected to launch across dozens of food and household categories. Earlier in the year, Walmart began selling its private label brands on Jet.com. The new brand is expected to have greater success with younger shoppers. The Jet.com private-label products will be sold exclusively on the site for the first year and will later sell on Walmart.com.
ShipStation launches integration with SAP Anywhere. ShipStation, a web-based ecommerce shipping platform, has announced its integration with SAP Anywhere. Designed for small and midsize companies, SAP Anywhere makes it easy for business owners to manage their multichannel commerce, sales, order fulfillment, inventory, marketing, CRM, and customer service. SAP Anywhere merchants will be able to connect their stores to ShipStation and to roughly 150 selling channels, including eBay, Amazon, Etsy, Big Cartel, Rakuten, and Sears.
Webgility introduces new, flexible pricing plans. Webgility, a player in ecommerce automation software in the small and medium business market, has introduced a new pricing structure and several new features designed to grow with a business, ranging from an easy self-service option to a feature-rich, fully supported offering. Webgility’s flagship product Unify will offer merchants a more comprehensive summary view of their business — showing sales for yesterday, the current day, and historical, for both single-store and multichannel sellers. Unify’s automation capabilities have been expanded, too. Price: Plans start at $24 per month.
Amazon is testing “Seller Flex” delivery service for merchants. Amazon is testing “Seller Flex,” an online delivery service for third-party merchants in the U.S. The service debuted in India two years ago. The U.S. program is starting on the West Coast and will expand in 2018. Amazon will manage pickup through delivery to customers, shifting more of the logistics process to its own control without having to bring additional third-party goods into its fulfillment centers.
Google has announced Google Express and Google Assistant nationwide integration with Target. Shoppers in the U.S. will now be able to buy from Target through the Google Assistant and receive Google Express delivery. Target will offer 2-day delivery, as well as free shipping for orders over $35. Shoppers will be able to add the REDcard to Google Express to receive 5 percent off most Target orders, plus free shipping. Target customers will also be able to opt in to receive personalized recommendations and a quick reorder experience based on past Target purchases.
Stripe launches Elements, a free toolkit to build customized checkout experiences. Online payment startup Stripe has launched Elements, a free solution to build customized checkout experiences. Stripe Elements are rich, pre-built user interface components that help you create your own checkout flows across desktop and mobile. By helping your customers input their information quickly and correctly, Elements will minimize user error and increase the number of successful payments.
Shopify tests Instagram shopping-feature for merchants. Shopify has started rolling out “Shopping on Instagram” to thousands of merchants before the 2017 holiday season. In this new rollout, merchants selected by Instagram and Shopify will be able to start tagging their posts with products in Instagram’s apps. With this feature, Instagram will join Shopify’s sales channels to help merchants grow their business on mobile, alongside Facebook, Messenger, Pinterest, Buzzfeed, Houzz, and more. Once Shopify’s test phase is complete, the Shopping on Instagram feature will be available to everyone.
Walmart makes online returns easier with Mobile Express Returns. Starting in November, Walmart customers who use the new Mobile Express Returns service will be able to initiate a return in the Walmart app before entering the physical store. Once in the store, the customer will scan an item’s QR code with her phone and return the item to the sales associate at a Mobile Express lane in the customer service area. The process is expected to take 30 seconds, one-third of the average time to process a return. At launch, only items sold and shipped by Walmart.com will be eligible for the service.
NCR and Worldpay launch Ring Up by NCR Silver for micro merchants. NCR has launched Ring Up by NCR Silver, a mobile point-of-sale service designed for micro businesses that need a simple way to manage the sales process and accept payments. It also saves merchants time by helping them set up a product catalog in advance, review total sales, send e-receipts, and build marketing databases of opt-in customers. The app is now available in the App Store and the Google Play Store.
Bpost to accelerate the expansion of its ecommerce logistics business with the acquisition of Radial. Bpost — Belgium Post Group — has announced the acquisition of U.S.-based company Radial, to expand offerings and accelerate the development of Bpost’s ecommerce logistics solutions. Radial is a provider of integrated ecommerce logistics and omnichannel technology solutions and offers integrated services such as payment, tax, fraud protection, as well as fulfillment and customer care for brands and retailers.