Use of Amazon's Price Check App tripled during the weekend as the retailer offered as much as $15 off to shoppers using the mobile application at brick-and-mortar stores, then buying online, according to data-usage monitor Onavo. The promotion brought a storm of criticism from small business and retail trade groups.
Google has acquired Clever Sense, the Mountain View, Calif.-based creator of a mobile restaurant-recommendation application called Alfred. The app lets users enter the names of restaurants they like and then makes recommendations based on taste, price and location.
Consumers in the U.K. are increasingly taking advantage of the ability to shop online and pick up their purchases at brick-and-mortar stores instead of waiting for delivery. Several severe snowstorms last winter that led to significant delivery glitches are a key factor driving the rise in click and collect, according to one online trade group.
Marketers may be missing key social media opportunities because they're not always on the same page as their customers, according to recent survey of consumers and marketers. Consumers say they want exclusive experiences, deals and other perks from their favorite brands, while marketers often say content and connections with peers are the biggest social drivers.
Online and catalog sales may be growing faster than in-store sales this holiday season, according to a Commerce Department report. Total retail sales rose 0.2% in November compared to the previous month, while non-store retail sales increased 1.5%.