News Feature | February 27, 2014

Retail IT News For VARs — February 27, 2014

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By Anna Rose Welch, contributing writer

Retail IT News For VARs

In the news, IHS research reveals cloud-based spending is expected to triple from 2011 to 2017. Also, social media is a driver for e-commerce — but another report concludes businesses want more from technology for e-commerce.

Cloud-Based Spending To Triple By 2017

An increasing number of businesses are moving their IT services to cloud-based infrastructure, IHS Technology has found. Cloud-related spending is expected to triple from 2011 to 2017. Global businesses this year will be spending an estimated $174.2 billion on cloud-related infrastructure and services. By 2017, IHS forecasts that spending will hit $235 billion — tripling the $78 billion spent in 2011. 

Social Media Becomes Key Driver Of E-Commerce

Mobstac has put together an infographic about the importance of social media in e-commerce. Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest were responsible for generating 75 percent of social-generated e-commerce sales. Social traffic to e-commerce sites caused revenue to increase by 17.8 percent from January to June 2013. It’s expected that U.S. consumers will spend $327 billion online in 2016.

Businesses Often Rank E-Commerce Technology Platforms Poorly

Ecoconsultancy has released its first Technology for E-Commerce Report, which shows that businesses are less than pleased with the performance of their technology platforms. According to the findings, high-quality search functionality, CMS, product management and merchandising, and mobile-supported e-commerce were more often than not ranked poorly in the survey. Despite the fact that 49 percent of respondents find e-commerce technology of “critical” importance, only 19 percent describe their technology’s performance as “good.” Managing integration with current or legacy systems, optimizing for multiple devices, and personalizing the shopping experience are the biggest tech-related challenges e-commerce companies are facing.

Mobile Website Load Times Cause Consumers Grief

Inside Mobile Apps highlights some of the findings of the Citrix Mobile Analytics Report for 2014, which analyzes social media and ads’ impacts on mobile. More than 50 percent of mobile phone owners have been served with mobile ads, while social media has become increasingly visual. Images comprise 63 percent of social media, and 32 percent is video-based. As video apps become more popular and social media showcases more videos, more consumers are becoming dissatisfied with mobile website load times.  Should a website take five seconds to load, 33 percent of consumers may abandon the page. After ten seconds, this percentage increases to 54 percent.

EMV Adoption Expected To Challenge mPOS Rollouts

PYMENTS interviews Karen Webster from Market Platform Dynamics and Ken Paull from ROAM about the future of mPOS. According Paull, as new players are entering into the market, the momentum towards mPOS has picked up. He also covers the international expansion of mPOS, citing EMV smartcards as a challenge facing mPOS adoption outside of the U.S. However, as the U.S. moves towards EMV card and payment system adoption, the costs of supporting the technology will inevitably a challenge facing mPOS adoption in the U.S.

Retail IT Talking Points

According to CNBC, Texas is the first state in the U.S. to see the unveiling of the first bitcoin ATM. Robocoin, the company responsible for the ATM, anticipates making at least seven more available in the U.S. by May. One of the security features of these new ATMs is palm vein scanning, as opposed to fingerprint scanning. The company previously launched one of these ATMs in Vancouver, Canada.

Eric Volkman for the Motley Fool discusses the rising ship-from-store trend, arguing that this initiative sets the brick-and-mortar store up to be Amazon’s biggest rival. Because of the large number of stores in close proximity to customers, this process enables speedier delivery. There is also the option that customers can buy online and pick the items up in store within a small number of hours, saving shipping costs. This initiative also helps eliminate excess inventory, ensuring fewer markdowns and profit margin damages. 

For more news and insights, visit BSMinfo’s Retail IT Tech Center.

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