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jerryking : third-party   17

How FleetOptic’s data analytics smooth the last mile of a parcel’s journey
SEPTEMBER 27, 2019 | The Globe and Mail| by JOANNA PACHNER, SPECIAL TO THE GLOBE AND MAIL.

FleetOptics specializes in so-called last-mile delivery, from a retailer's distribution centre to the customer's door—the hardest and most expensive portion, estimated to account for a least 30% of total transportation cost. It's also the most vital as, in the e-commerce era, receiving the package is often the only contact consumers have with a human during the transaction. FleetOptics' software makes the parcel's progress transparent for both business and consumer. Customers can track the driver on-screen as they might an approaching Uber car, avoiding that infuriating experience of the deliveryman arriving just after they jump in the shower. Retailers, meanwhile, can check packages' status in real time through FleetOptics' online portal. As co-founder Vince Buckley pithily sums it up, “Tesla is a battery company that also makes cars. We're a technology company that also makes deliveries.”
analytics  data  data_driven  delivery  delivery_networks  delivery_services  distribution  distribution_centres  e-commerce  FleetOptics  fulfillment  last_mile  logistics  package_delivery  retailers  same-day  start_ups  shipping  third-party  traceability  tracking  trucking  warehouses 
november 2019 by jerryking
Ikea looks to launch sales platform that would include rival products
February 12, 2019 | Financial Times | Richard Milne in Almhult.

Ikea is exploring the launch of an online sales platform offering furniture not just from the famous flat-pack retailer but also from rivals as part of its big transformation...........

Torbjorn Loof, chief executive of Inter Ikea, added: “It is also about how you connect. If you take home furnishings, for instance — how you connect communities, how you connect knowledge, how you connect the home. It’s not only furniture, it’s paintings, it’s the do-it-yourself part. There are many different constellations that can and will evolve over the years to come.”
Alibaba  Amazon  brands  clothing  e-commerce  experimentation  fashion  furniture  home-assembly  Ikea  leasing  opportunities  platforms  retailers  third-party  Zalando  rivalries  digital_strategies  Torbjörn_Lööf  coopetition 
february 2019 by jerryking
Why Jeff Bezos Should Push for Nobody to Get as Rich as Jeff Bezos
Sept. 19, 2018 | The New York Times | By Farhad Manjoo.

Why does Jeff Bezos have so much money in the first place? What does his fortune tell us about the economic structure and impact of the tech industry, the engine behind his billions? And, most important, what responsibility comes with his wealth — and is it any business of ours what he does with it?.........Bezos’ extreme wealth is not only a product of his own ingenuity. It is also a function of several grand forces shaping the global economy...the unequal impact of digital technology..... direct economic benefits have accrued to a small number of superstar companies and their largest shareholders.....the most important thing Bezos can do with his money is to become a traitor to his class,” said Anand Giridharadas, author of a new book, “Winners Take All.”.....Giridharadas argues that the efforts of the super-wealthy to change the world through philanthropy are often a distraction from the planet’s actual problems. To truly fix the world, Mr. Bezos ought to push for policy changes that would create a more equal distribution of the winnings ......there are fans of Amazon who will dispute the notion that Bezos’ wealth represents a problem or a responsibility....He acquired his wealth legally and in the most quintessentially American way: He had a wacky idea, took a stab at it, stuck with it through thick and thin, and, through patient, deliberate, farsighted risk-taking,.......Tech-powered businesses are often driven by an economic concept known as network effects, in which the very popularity of a service sparks even greater popularity. Amazon, for instance, keeps attracting more third-party businesses to sell goods in its store — which in turn makes it a better store for customers, which attracts more suppliers, improving the customer experience, and so on in an endless virtuous cycle........Mr. Bezos’ most attractive quality, as a businessman, is his capacity for patience and surprise. “This is guy who was willing to buck what everyone else thought for so long,” Mr. Giridharadas said. “If he brings that same irreverence to the question of how to give, he has the potential to interrogate himself about why it is that we need so many billionaires to save us in the first place
Amazon  Anand_Giridharadas  books  economic_policy  economies_of_scale  Erik_Brynjolfsson  Farhad_Manjoo  Jeff_Bezos  third-party  high_net_worth  human_ingenuity  ingenuity  moguls  network_effects  philanthropy  superstars  virtuous_cycles  winner-take-all 
september 2018 by jerryking
The Prime Effect: How Amazon’s Two-Day Shipping Is Disrupting Retail
Sept. 20, 2018 | WSJ | By Christopher Mims.

Amazon.com Inc. has made its Prime program the gold standard for all other online retailers... The $119-a-year Prime program—which now includes more than 100 million members world-wide—has triggered an arms race among the largest retailers, and turned many smaller sellers into remoras who cling for life to the bigger fish.

In the past year, Target Corp. , Walmart Inc. and many vendors on Google Express have all started offering “free” two-day delivery. (Different vendors have different requirements for no-fee shipping, whether it’s order size or loyalty-club membership.)

Amazon and its competitors are often blamed for the death of bricks-and-mortar retail, but the irony is that these online retailers generally achieve fast shipping by investing in real estate—in the form of warehouses rather than stores. To compete on cost, the vendors must typically ship goods via ground transportation, not faster-but-pricier air. The latest to offer free two-day delivery is Overstock.com , which claims it can reach over 99% of the U.S. in that time frame from a single distribution center in Kansas City, Kan.

But the biggest online retailers aren’t the only ones building massive fulfillment centers and similar operations. Fulfillment startups and large companies from other sectors are hoping to scale up by luring smaller sellers who want alternatives to Amazon’s warehousing and delivery operations.
Amazon  Amazon_Prime  arms_race  delivery_times  disruption  e-commerce  free  fulfillment  retailers  same-day  shipping  third-party  warehouses 
september 2018 by jerryking
The Limits of Amazon
Jan. 1, 2018 | WSJ | By Christopher Mims.

Amazon’s core mission as a data-driven instant-gratification company. Its fanaticism for customer experience is enabled by every technology the company can get its hands on, from data centers to drones. Imagine the data-collecting power of Facebook wedded to the supply-chain empire of Wal-Mart—that’s Amazon.

There is one major problem with the idea that Amazon-will-eat-the-entire-universe, however. Amazon is good at identifying commodity products and making those as cheap and available as possible. “Your margin is my opportunity” is one of Chief Executive Jeff Bezos’s best-known bon mots. But this system isn’t very compatible with big-ticket, higher-margin items.....

How Amazon Does It
Amazon now increasingly makes its money by extracting a percentage from the sales of other sellers on its site. It has become a platform company like Facebook Inc. or Alphabet Inc.’s Google, which serve as marketplaces for businesses with less reach of their own.....Eventually, Amazon could become the ultimate platform for retail, the “retail cloud” upon which countless other online retail businesses are built....Think of Amazon as an umbrella company composed of disconnected and sometimes competing businesses, though critically they can access common infrastructure, including the retail platform and cloud services.

Ultimately, these smaller businesses must feed the core mission. Amazon’s video business isn’t just its own potential profit center; it’s also a way to keep people in Amazon’s world longer, where they spend more money,

What Amazon Can’t Do
Ultimately, the strategies that allow Amazon to continue growing will also be its limitation. “If the platform needs to be one-size-fits-all across many, many different product categories, it becomes difficult to create specific experiences for different kinds of products,”
contra-Amazon  Amazon  strengths  data_driven  instant_gratification  customer_experience  platforms  one-size-fits-all  limitations  Jeff_Bezos  weaknesses  commoditization  third-party  Christopher_Mims 
january 2018 by jerryking
Nike Thought It Didn’t Need Amazon—Then the Ground Shifted - WSJ
By Laura Stevens and Sara Germano
June 28, 2017

Meanwhile, more and more of the sales of Nike and other goods on Amazon’s site were by third parties. The growth in the third-party segment had been fueled by rapid adoption by sellers and an offering in which Amazon warehouses and fulfills orders.

A shopper left a Nike store in San Francisco last year.
A shopper left a Nike store in San Francisco last year. PHOTO: DAVID PAUL MORRIS/BLOOMBERG NEWS
These days, analysts estimate third-party sales in total have surpassed Amazon’s own sales on the site, and the number of sellers has swelled to over two million. Amazon doesn’t report the value of sales by third-party sellers, but it confirms that about half of units sold on its site are from third-party sellers.

Third-party sales are generally more profitable to Amazon than its own, because it collects fees from the sellers without having to take on inventory risks.
Amazon  Nike  sneakers  third-party  brands  sports  apparel  Under_Armour 
june 2017 by jerryking
The High-Speed Trading Behind Your Amazon Purchase - WSJ
By CHRISTOPHER MIMS
Updated March 27, 2017

Beneath the placid surface of product pages lies an unseen world of bots, algorithms, flash crashes and fierce competition......Just beneath the placid surface of a typical product page on Amazon lies an unseen world, a system where third-party vendors can sell products alongside Amazon’s own goods. It’s like a stock market, complete with day traders, code-slinging quants, artificial-intelligence algorithms and, yes, flash crashes.

Amazon gave people and companies the ability to sell on Amazon.com in 2000, and it has since grown into a juggernaut, representing 49% of the goods Amazon ships. Amazon doesn’t break out numbers for the portion of its business driven by independent sellers, but that translates to tens of billions in revenue a year. Out of more than 2 million registered sellers, 100,000 each sold more than $100,000 in goods in the past year....It’s clear, after talking to sellers and the software companies that empower them, that the biggest of these vendors are growing into sophisticated retailers in their own right. The top few hundred use pricing algorithms to battle with one another for the coveted “Buy Box,” which designates the default seller of an item. It’s the Amazon equivalent of a No. 1 ranking on Google search, and a tremendous driver of sales.
fulfillment  Amazon  pricing  back-office  third-party  bots  algorithms  flash_crashes  competition  retailers  e-commerce  product_category  private_labels  stockmarkets  eBay  Wal-Mart  Jet  Christopher_Mims 
march 2017 by jerryking
Oil Firms Pool R&D, Come Up Empty So Far - WSJ.com
Nov. 13, 2013 | WSJ | By Chester Dawson.

Alberta Premier Alison Redford earlier this year had pledged that the amount of tailings would stop growing by 2016 and that tailing ponds would "disappear from Alberta's landscape in the very near future."

But most industry officials say that is unlikely without major technological breakthroughs.

To help speed up efforts to reduce or reclaim tailings, Cosia's members have pledged to make all of their patented and propriety research available to one another in perpetuity, without charging royalties.

"That's a huge step by the industry and I can tell you big global companies thought long and hard before they did it—but they did," said Marcel Coutu, CEO of Canadian Oil Sands Ltd., the largest shareholder in major oil-sands producer Syncrude Canada Ltd.

But by creating a monopoly among oil-sands producers in environmental technology, some industry officials say that Cosia may actually stunt development—by discouraging innovation from third parties who are unwilling to surrender their patents wholesale.

"It's not to our benefit to spend a whole lot of money on R&D and then just hand it over," said Preston McEachern, research director at Tervita Corp., a Calgary-based environmental services provider. "That, to us, is a real bar against bringing new innovations forward and helping achieve these great outcomes," he told attendees at a recent oil-sands conference in Fort McMurray.
oil_industry  R&D  oil_sands  joint_ventures  oil_patch  patents  third-party  collaboration  Alberta  innovation  pooling  environmental_services 
november 2013 by jerryking
Why Are Hedge Funds Allowed to Invest in Litigation?
Jul 3 2012 | The Atlantic | Lisa Rickard.

the spread of third-party litigation financing, or TPLF.

You probably haven't heard of TPLF. It's a fairly recent creation, originating in Australia and now landing on the shores of the U.S. In essence, TPLF is the practice of hedge funds and other investment firms providing funds to plaintiffs' lawyers in order to conduct litigation. If the case is won in court or settled, the investor is repaid out of the proceeds of the lawsuit, usually with an extremely high rate of return. The investors, therefore, have a direct stake in the outcome of the case.

Proponents of TPLF say that providing this new funding stream increases access to the courts. But U.S. courts are already widely accessible. For instance, a plaintiff can hire an attorney on a contingency fee basis, a practice that is prohibited in most other developed countries.....we've seen how TPLF benefits funders and hurt litigants. But the biggest loser from TPLF might be society at large. This is because we all rely on an impartial civil justice system to resolve disputes in a fair and expeditious manner. When TPLF debases that system by putting investor profits ahead of justice, society is the loser
hedge_funds  litigation  investors  class_action_lawsuits  lawsuits  third-party 
july 2012 by jerryking
6 Tips for Building a Web-Based Store - WSJ.com
DECEMBER 9, 2011 | WSJ | By TY MCMAHAN. (Send to Debbie)

Building an ecommerce platform within your company website doesn't have to be complex or expensive. A number of new services—such as such as Goodsie, Shopify, Storenvy and Weebly—now make the task easy and affordable. You can use these services to design a store, upload product, create shopping carts, manage fulfillment and more, —all for as little as a few dollars a month.

1. Invest time, and possibly money, in taking good photos.

Photography is the "dirty little secret" of e-commerce, according to Mr. Davis. "[Customers] can't touch and feel your wares, so your photography needs to be an important element."

Merchants should professionally photograph as many details of a product as they can afford.

Goodsie Chief Executive Jonathan Marcus recommends shooting each product individually, as well as while it's being worn or used by a model, in order to show how big the product is.

2. Use a voice that matches your brand.

"There's a fine line between cute and strategic," says Mr. Davis. For example, a flower shop may describe marigolds as "perfect for fall and a favorite for moms," while an electronics store may provide a more technical description of products. Merchants should also consider how their descriptions might surface in search-engine results, he adds.

3. Experiment with the layout, and mix it up.

The new services, which emerged within the past five years, provide hundreds of templates for the arrangement of products on the page, as well as a wide variety of different colors and fonts. "Change things every two to three weeks over three months and see what drives the best results," Mr. Davis says.

Goodsie's Mr. Marcus adds that stores need to be thoughtful about what products fit together on a page. For example, an apparel company may consider arranging items that make up an entire outfit.

4. Figure out the payment gateway.

This is the trickiest part of creating an online store, according to Mr. Davis. Store owners will need to set up a merchant account with a bank to link funds from the credit card company or a third-party processor like PayPal, which lets customers use its merchant account under certain terms, usually with very little setup required. PayPal does not charge a setup fee.

Currently, Weebly stores only accept Paypal or Google Checkout to process payments. Goodsie offers those services, as well as Braintree Inc. and Authorize.net, a Visa Inc. company, to accept credit card payments. Shopify offers dozens of payment options.

PayPal accepts all major credit cards with no setup or monthly fees. The service takes a 2.9% fee per transaction on monthly sales up to $3,000. The rate reduces as monthly sales increase. Google Checkout charges the same. Authorize.net charges a $100 set-up fee, a $20 monthly fee and 10 cents per transaction. Most services charge about $10 per chargeback in the event a refund is issued.

5. Try to make online shopping feel like an experience.

"Do you have the right boxes? Do you have packing foam? How do you want merchandise to be presented when your customer opens the box? Remember, that's the only one-on-one you're going to have with a customer," Mr. Davis says. He suggests offering gift wrapping and sending hand-written thank-you notes to add a more personal touch to the e-commerce experience.

Alternatively, you can outsource fulfillment. Shopify integrates with third-party fulfillment services such as Fulfillment by Amazon, Shipwire and Webgistix. The cost of this can range for tens of dollars into the thousands depending on the product and volume of shipping. Those who choose to outsource fulfillment should do several trial orders with a service before committing to a provider, Mr. Davis suggests.

6. Promote heavily.
tips  e-commerce  websites  fulfillment  third-party  Shopify  Amazon  howto  JCK 
december 2011 by jerryking
Op-Ed Columnist - Third Party Rising - NYTimes.com
October 2, 2010 | New York Times | By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN
Tom_Friedman  third-party 
october 2010 by jerryking
Talk Is Cheap - WSJ.com
NOVEMBER 26, 2007 WSJ by SUZANNE BARLYN. Word-of-mouth
marketing as a cost-effective way to help get a business off the ground
or to stay competitive amid growing economic uncertainty.
social_networking  advertising  Word-of-mouth  third-party  validation  buzz  WoM 
march 2009 by jerryking

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