This week in eCommerce news, Facebook and Instagram attempt to innovate the way ads display in your feed with cinemagraphs. These animated Gifs with isolated areas of motion are captivating to the eye, and have become the social networks’ suggest way for marketers to leverage autoplay to engage with users and drive sales. Amazon announced this week the launch of a new service for users. Amazon Giveaway allows sellers on the eCommerce platform to host giveaways and promotional offers with the ability to giveaway 50 products with a cost of up to $5000, while utilizing Amazon’s distribution network. Michael Kors is one of the few luxury retailers effectively leveraging the opportunities that eCommerce presents, with year-over-year growth for fiscal Q3 of 2015 of 73%. Start-up Loverly launched its eCommerce channel this week with “The Loverly Collection”, targeting Millennial brides with its range of branded wedding-related products, from dress to floral-arrangements. For all the details from this week’s newsmakers read-on below!
You’re getting sleepy, very sleep…or are you just watching a hypnotic ad in your Facebook feed? Welcome to the world of cinemagraphs, advertiser’s newfound technique to get you to stop scrolling, and buy, buy, buy! This half-photograph half-video format even had its own guide put together by the team at Facebook for marketers called “Hacking Facebook Autoplay”. This encouraged advertisers and marketers to leverage the fact that formats will now autoplay within a user’s feed. Some brands have already started to implement cinemagraphs into their Facebook strategy, including Stouffer’s and Coca-Cola. Discovered by duo Jamie Beck & Kevin Burg, these Gifs have an isolated area of motion and are captivating and beautiful.
eCommerce giant Amazon announced this week a new service that will allow users selling on the platform to host giveaways. This will be a great tool for customers, from marketers to sellers to raise awareness and engage a larger audience. The tool will also allow those who utilize it to leverage Amazon’s shipping capabilities, as the platform will handle distribution of prizes. There will be no additional cost to use Amazon Giveaway, however hosts will have to pay for the products used as prizes. There are limits on the amount of products that can be won (50) and the amount up to which the prizes can be worth ($5,000). The service is open to all customers, and Amazon is kicking it all off by offering promotions with participating brands, who are using the hashtag #AmazonGiveaway on social networks to spread awareness.
The third quarter of their fiscal year for 2015 proved to be profitable for luxury retailer Michael Kors. The company, which recently brought its eCommerce technology in-house, posted profits that reflect a growth of 73% in online sales year-over-year. eCommerce was a key player in what became a successful quarter for the retailer. Overall netsales for Micheal Kors increased 31% year over year for Q3 2015, jumping from $964.8 million to $1.263 billion. The eCommerce portion of the retailer accounted for 7% of net sales in North America, putting online sales a $39 million for Michael Kors for Q3 2015. The company’s CEO hopes that eventually their eCommerce presence will growth to account for 20% of the business in North America. Bringing their eCommerce technology was a huge revenue driver in Q3 for the brand, allowing Michael Kors to engage with existing and new customers, with additional investments being put into the platform to growth the revenue stream. Michael Kors is lauded as one of luxury retailers that “gets it” when it comes to eCommerce, even placing importance on the omnichannel experience by matching mobile visitors to nearby locations. eCommerce is reported to be one of the fastest growing sales channels for retailers in the luxury category, with 28% growth occurring between 2013 to 2014 according to Bain & Company.
A wedding inspiration platform for brides (mostly the Gen Y’s – a.k.a “Millennials”) have expanded into the realm of eCommerce, offering a range of branded products from dresses to floral arrangements. Loverly, a so-called Pinterest for weddings, launched 3 years ago and this week announced “The Loverly Collection”. By mining the data they’ve collected, the team at Loverly was able to create products that were tailored to the tastes and interests of its user-base. These real-time insights and data mining is key to success in eCommerce, and leveraging this allowed Loverly to confidently collaborate with designers to bring its branded collection online. Loverly’s first collection is a joint-effort with Anthropologie buyer Eva Franco, with dresses starting at $178. Loverly reports that in the last quarter of 2014 it saw a 400% gain in online reach year-over-year, and raised $3.5 million in a round of Series A Funding in the Fall of 2014.