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Survey: Online retailers divided on impact of Marketplace Fairness Act

BY Dan Berthiaume

Chicago – Online retailers are divided about the impact of the proposed Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) legislation, largely based on company size. According to a new McGladley LLP survey of decision-makers at small and mid-sized online retailers, 38% of small and mid-sized online retailers with revenues between $10 million and $1 billion project that the MFA would have a negative impact on their profitability.

However, while 50% of executives at companies with annual revenues between $10 million and $50 million project negative impacts on profit, the number drops to 22% for executives at companies in the $150 million to $1 billion range. Smaller retailers said they fear the MFA’s passage would impact their profitability, while larger retailers indicate they are not as troubled.

There is widespread awareness of the legislation among decision-makers in the small and mid-sized segments; overall, 96% of those surveyed reported being familiar with the MFA. However, 70% of respondents who reported being part of internal discussions about the legislation at their companies were in the lower revenue range.

The survey suggests that less than 40% of small and mid-sized online retailers expect to be hurt significantly by the law, but 43% of all respondents said they were either somewhat or very likely to consider terminating some online sales in response to the MFA, and nearly all (98%) said they would pass along increased compliance costs to the consumer.

"These results make clear that the potential impacts of this legislation are wide-ranging and highly complex," said Dustin Petersen, a partner with McGladrey. "While small and mid-sized companies are understandably concerned about losing a competitive advantage and incurring higher compliance costs, those on the higher end of the revenue range appear to see this as somewhat of an equalizer, as they feel that they have been disadvantaged by charging state sales tax and burdened by the disorganized array of systems through which they have had to do so."

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Report: Retailers consolidate ownership of customer data

BY Dan Berthiaume

Walnut Creek, Calif. — Retailers appear to be putting in the foundational elements to create a coordinated focus on the customer experience. The percentage of respondents to a new survey from RSR Research reporting that Marketing is the primary owner of customer data internally nearly doubled from 2012 to 2013, from 33% to 61%, and those reporting no explicit owner fell from 33% to 17%.

Other internal areas covered in “Marketing 2013: Organizational Drift” also have increased ownership of customer data. Store operations, e-commerce/direct, and merchandising all showed increased ownership from 2012.

However, RSR Research analysis shows this increase appears to be driven more from a recognition of the value of customer data that is generated in all aspects of the business (especially customer-facing ones), rather than a diversification of ownership of consolidated data sources.


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HSN, Univision launch integrated marketing partnership

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – HSN is launching an integrated marketing partnership with Spanish-language media company Univision Communications that will offer a fully integrated experience for U.S. Hispanic consumers.

The multi-year exclusive partnership will include HSN products across all categories, launching with curated collections in the beauty, home, fashion, culinary, electronics and holiday categories. The partnership will be promoted through a comprehensive marketing campaign across HSN and Univision’s television, digital and social media channels, including Univision Network, local television and radio stations and digital offerings. The marketing efforts will seek to promote the partnership via talent endorsements, product integration, and other efforts to aid brand awareness as well as incentivize trial offers on feature products.

Univision Network’s morning show Despierta America will serve as a platform for the shopping service as well as for its products via integrations on both a national and local level. By having talent present the product, viewers will be able to then purchase the items worn or used on the show – taking product integration to a new level.

"HSN is redefining the experience of shopping through engaging content and storytelling and we look forward to extending this to Univision’s platforms," said Bill Brand, chief marketing and business development officer for HSN, Inc. "Univision’s position as the nation’s most trusted Spanish-language media and entertainment company creates a tremendous opportunity for HSN to broaden our customer base and develop new emotional connections."


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C.Graphics says:
Jan-30-2014 06:12 am

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