The Global eCommerce Newsletter 10.31.16

[Facebook] Facebook Messenger now supports PayPal payments in bots, will track your PayPal receipts
PayPal has become one of the payment options within Facebook Messenger in the U.S. In addition, PayPal will make it easier to link customers’ accounts to Facebook and Messenger to support receiving transaction notifications. Earlier this year, Messenger has reached a billion users. About 40% of U.S. mobile users are on Facebook messaging platform now. PayPal could benefit greatly from this partnership by leveraging Messenger’s customer base. Facebook, in the meantime, is working with key players in the payment industry, including Stripe, Visa, MasterCard, and American Express.

RELATED: Facebook embraces utility with food ordering and ticketing
“From Facebook Pages, you’ll now be able to order food through and Slice, request an appointment through MyTime, get a professional services quote, or buy movie and event tickets through Ticketmaster and EventBrite without leaving Facebook.”

[Google] Google Express launches in South Carolina as fight for e-commerce heats up
Google is rolling out an on-demand delivery service in South Carolina on the 25th, offering two-day shipping from retailers like Costco and Whole Foods. Similar to Amazon Prime which charges a $99 annual membership fee, Google Express charges $95 a year. Unlike Amazon, Google’s customers shop with individual retailers who handle their own shipping. The company says that it covers 90 percent of the continental U.S. Its delivery service represents “an answer to retailers’ fears by letting them get into a bigger marketplace without losing their individual brands.”

[Alibaba] Alibaba stretches 11.11 Shopping Festival to three weeks
China ecommerce giant Alibaba has expanded its 11.11 Single’s Day Shopping Festival to three weeks this year. This year, during the three-week shopping extravaganza, Alibaba will have a number of activities, including live streaming a fashion show in Shanghai, releasing an augmented reality mobile game two weeks before Single’s Day, and hosting a countdown gala on November 10th. Celebrities will be taking the stage, including Katy Perry who recently became Alibaba’s “global ambassador.” The company expects to surpass the record $14.3 billion in sales from last year.

[Japan] Retailers in Japan Penalized for Poor Ecommerce Experiences
Japan is the fourth largest ecommerce market, accounting for 4% of the worldwide online retail sales in 2016 according to eMarketer. The country’s shoppers have high standards. A May 2016 polling of Japanese online shoppers shows that nearly one-third of the respondents have had bad online experience in the past year. 36% of the respondents cited that delivery was the biggest source of trouble, while another 22% mentioned missed delivery as another issue. 16% of the respondents received damaged products. However, it is also worth noting that the Japanese online shoppers are also loyal to their favorite ecommerce brands. According to a December 2015 eMarketer article, 25% of consumers in Japan referred friends and family to their preferred site. Retailers that can provide pleasant ecommerce experiences are rewarded.

[Asia] Asia drives cross-border eCommerce
According to a study conducted by Pitney Bowes, a global online technology company, Singapore (89%), Australia (86%), and Hong Kong (85%) have the highest number of cross-border shoppers. The finding uncovers that 63% of cross-border consumers participate in so-called “In-store Global. Online Local”: “when consumers make in-store purchases during their international travels, and follow up with online purchases from the same cross-border retailer.” The survey also reveals insights into the trend of mobile device usage. Shoppers in Singapore (51%), India (50%), Mexico (49%), and China (47%) are most likely to use a mobile device for browsing. Mobile usage increases significantly when tracking a purchase.

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