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Smarthome implements 360price for competitive price intelligence

BY Dan Berthiaume

Irvine, Calif. — Home automation product retailer Smarthome has deployed the 360pi 360price solution, providing the retailer with pricing intelligence for 3,000 SKUs in near real-time. Smarthome had built an in-house solution to compete with the SKUs carried by the large online pure-plays, but these SKUs only accounted for a fraction of its revenues.

More importantly, Smarthome needed a reliable solution to address its direct competitive set, those retailers focused expressly on the home automation market.

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Study: U.S. retailers’ online sales to hit $50 billion by 2020

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — International sales from U.S. online retailers will jump from $11 billion in 2014 to almost $50 billion by 2020, which would make up 16% of the overall U.S. online retail market, according to a new report by OC&C Strategy Consultants.

The OC&C “The Global Retail e-mpire” report, done in collaboration with Google, details the growth opportunity for U.S. online retailers to expand their international presence in order to access new customers and drive revenue. It found that international customers are turning to the U.S. for entertainment, electronics, fashion and general merchandise. Brazil has demonstrated the most growth in international searches for U.S retailers at 425, followed by Australia (39%), Mexico (38%) and Italy (37%).

While international sales for U.S. online retailers will only reach 7% of total volumes this year, OC&C’s analysis suggests that these numbers could more than double within the decade and could reach 16% by 2020.

Leading online retailers, such as eBay and Amazon, have had significant e-commerce market share across the largest international markets over the last several years, and reported that more than 50% of their sales are already coming from overseas.

“It’s not surprising that our analysis suggests that the largest, most popular U.S. retailers have a concentrated presence overseas. What is surprising is that for the first time our research reveals that smaller U.S. online pureplay retailers, such as Etsy and Snapfish, are demonstrating rapid international growth; Etsy has now reached the Top 10 most sought out U.S. retailers based on international searches,” said Rambaut Fairley at OC&C Strategy Consultants.

OC&C’s research has determined that U.S. retailers, unlike many of their overseas peers, are leading the way in successfully internationalizing their e-commerce sites. Forty percent of U.S. ecommerce brands have reported reaching more than 50 countries with their goods and services, and another 40% have designed their websites to specifically target Spanish-speaking and other local language customers.

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Costco opens 2014 with January sales increase

BY CSA STAFF

Costco reported net sales of $8 billion for the four weeks ended Feb. 2, representing an increase of 6% from the similar four-week period last year.

Comparable store sales across Costco’s U.S. store base were up 5%.

For the 22 weeks ended Feb. 2, Costco reported net sales of $46.3 billion, representing a similar increase of 6% versus the year-ago period.

The company plans to release its operating results for the second quarter Thursday, March 6.

Costco currently operates 649 warehouses, including 462 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 87 in Canada, 33 in Mexico, 25 in the United Kingdom, 18 in Japan, 10 in Taiwan, 9 in Korea and 5 in Australia. Costco also operates e-commerce sites in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom and Mexico.

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