This Week’s eCommerce news covers a variety of topics including digital currencies, new shipping offerings and eGifting. Yesterday, Bitcoinshop.us announced that it has added DogeCoin to its portfolio of cryptocurrencies accepted on its eCommerce platform. Shopify’s card reader is now available for Canadian merchants. eBay is set to expand its Global Shipping Program (GSP) to now include 53 countries around the world. Could eGifting actually improve shopping cart abandonment? Read article summaries in our Weekly Wrap Up.
Selling at a farmer’s market, trade show or pop-up store? Shopify announces the launch of the Shopify reader in Canada. The card reader is a free device that allows merchants to accept credit card payments on-the-go via Shopify Mobile iPhone app or in-store with Shopify’s POS which is an iPad-based POS system. Merchants with brick and mortar locations can also use the card reader in store with their fully integrated point of sale system, bridging the gap between offline and online retail.
Starting April 8 2014, eBay will be expanding its shipping program to include 9 new countries added to its Global Shipping Program (GSP). Buyers from Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain, Croatia, Malaysia and Turkey countries will soon experience the benefits of the program. The program is appealing to buyers as they will have access to the complete listing of costs associated with their purchase including taxes, duties or any other hidden fees. However, some sellers view it as a disadvantage because it makes their items much more costly than items in the buyers’ own country.
The gift card industry makes it easy for shoppers to purchase a plastic card of any monetary value as a gift, generating $118 billion annually. Similar to gift cards, eGifting is a smaller phenomenon that is expected to reach $10 billion annually by 2016. eGifting adds a peer-to-peer dimension to the whole gifting experience in eCommerce. One unique online startup attempts to take out the concerns and hassles from the whole eGifting process. Smartgift, is a Brooklyn, NY, based startup that offers users an alternative way to checkout. Retailers currently using the Smartgift function at checkout have experienced lower than average shopping cart abandonment rates of 27%.
Virtual currency eCommerce market place Bitcoin Shop Inc. announced yesterday, that it is now accepting DogeCoin on its eCommerce platform. The company has an ongoing strategy to increase the number of cryptocurrencies that the platform is capable of accepting. In order to achieve this strategic goal, Bitcoin Shop Inc. partnered up with GoCoin, a leading international payment-processing platform. This partnership will allow Bitcoin Shop Inc. to attract a broader consumer base. According to DogeCoin, approximately 100 billion Dogecoins will be mined by the end of 2014.