Online retail sales have experienced a massive boom in the last few years especially, exceeding £130 billion in the UK in 2016. It is a highly lucrative market with plenty of opportunities for growth, though one that is seemingly dominated by the big names such as Amazon, eBay and more. Any ecommerce website hoping to challenge them or prosper in their own niche needs to avoid the following mistakes.
Image source Flickr
Problem: Having a secure website is of upmost importance for any ecommerce business. There are two main areas at risk with a security breach; the finances of the business and sensitive data. Information about customers, clients and employees can be accessed if slack security is in place, losing customer confidence and creating a risky environment.
Solution: To best avoid the chances of a network or application attack, Nettitude penetration testing can reduce the risk. This identifies vulnerabilities and provides context around them, so that your ecommerce business can fix any such problems. This means you should have the best security measures in place to prevent any such security breach.
Problem: If an ecommerce site is hard to navigate then it will instantly put off potential customers. Likewise, poor presentation in terms of the layout of text, images and buy buttons will do the same. Small or no product descriptions and poor quality images further add to the problem.
Solution: Look at the competition and see what they are doing well. Think about what you like when you go to buy something online, what makes it an easy process and draws you in to buy products. This could be having plenty of images, descriptive product descriptions and an easy to understand layout.
Lack of Marketing
Problem: Nobody’s visiting your ecommerce website! This really is a problem, as you need customers to make sales and keep the business ticking over. One of the main reasons for this could be a lack of marketing for your ecommerce business, as potential customers may not be aware of it.
Solution: There are many proven ecommerce marketing strategies, from digital marketing to Google Ads. Some of the simple tasks to improve your online marketing and presence are to create and utilise social media accounts, implement an SEO plan and more.
Avoid these three mistakes and use the solutions to ensure your ecommerce business prospers.
A pair of Justin Bieber’s Nike basketball shoes has sold for more than $62,000 in an eBay auction to benefit a food bank in his hometown of Stratford, Ontario.
Justin Bieber’s grandparents, Diane and Bruce Dale, donated some of the singer’s personal items to raise money for the Stratford House of Blessing food bank.
The auction started January 31 and closed at noon on February 7.
Justin Bieber’s Toronto Maple Leafs comforter sold for more than $6,000, his pillow case went for more than $3,000, and his ceiling light came in at just under $2,000.
The charity says on its website that Justin Bieber and his mother chose to donate the items “because they were helped by us in their time of need.”
Organizers say Justin Bieber autographed the items when he was in the area over the holidays, and each came with a certificate of authenticity signed by his grandmother. The winning bids aren’t finalized until confirmed by eBay.
eBay is planning to cut 2,400 jobs in Q1 2015, the e-commerce giant announced on January 21.
The company’s decision to cut about 7% of its workforce comes ahead of a plan to split from its online payment PayPal business this year.
eBay made the announcement in its fourth quarter earnings report, which had topped expectations on Wall Street.
It said in a statement it wanted to refocus the businesses and ensure it was “set-up to compete and win”.
The job cuts will range across its eBay Marketplaces, PayPal, and eBay Enterprise units.
The tech giant also said it has made an agreement with activist investor, Carl Icahn, to give investors a greater say in its PayPal business once it is spun off in the second half of this year.
The billionaire investor had been trying to gather support for the proposed split before the company’s annual shareholder meeting in May last year.
eBay also announced that it was considering a sale or public offering of its enterprise unit.
Amid the business shake up, eBay forecast earnings between 68 cents and 71 cents a share in the first quarter, while revenue was expected to hit $4.35 billion to $4.45 billion. Both forecasts fell short of market expectations.
Its profit in Q4 2014 rose to $936 million on $4.9 billion in revenue.
eBay’s New York listed shares rose 2.6% in after-hours trade.
Sotheby’s and eBay will create a web platform to allow viewers to bid on and buy art.
According to Sotheby’s chief operating officer Bruno Vinciguerra, the international art auction house hoped to reach “the broadest possible audience around the world” with the move.
Sotheby’s said the number of lots purchased online increased 36% in 2013.
Online art sales are expected to reach $13 billion by 2020.
Sotheby’s and eBay will create a web platform to allow viewers to bid on and buy art (photo Getty Images)
In April, John James Audubon’s elephant-folio The Birds of America sold for $3.5 million online via a live auction at Sotheby’s – a record for the company.
The venture will start with live auctions streamed from Sotheby’s New York headquarters, which will allow “real-time bidding from anywhere around the world”.
Sotheby’s will offer 18 categories to start, focusing jewelry, watches, prints, wine, photographs and 20th century design – categories the company says have been particularly appealing to online buyers.
The move comes just ahead of eBay’s earnings, which are set to be released on Wednesday, and as more and more start-ups, such as Artsy, Artspace and Paddle8 allow consumers to buy art on the web.
In 2013, Amazon announced it would sell works by artists such as Salvador Dali and Andy Warhol on its website.
Sotheby’s and eBay declined to give a firm start date for the service.
eBay is urging users to change their passwords following a cyber-attack that compromised one of its databases.
The auction site said the database was hacked between late February and early March, and had contained encrypted passwords and other non-financial data.
eBay added that it had no evidence of there being unauthorized activity on its members’ accounts.
However, it said that changing the passwords was “best practice and will help enhance security for eBay users”.
eBay is urging users to change their passwords following a cyber-attack that compromised one of its databases
The company has 128 million active users and accounted for $212 billion worth of commerce on its various marketplaces and other services in 2013.
A post on eBay’s corporate site said that cyber-attackers accessed the information after obtaining “a small number of employee log-in credentials”, allowing them to access its systems – something it only became aware of a fortnight ago.
“The database… included eBay customers’ name, encrypted password, email address, physical address, phone number and date of birth,” it said.
“However, the database did not contain financial information or other confidential personal information.
“Extensive forensics subsequently identified the compromised eBay database, resulting in the company’s announcement today.”
Although eBay also owns the PayPal money transfer service, it said that the division’s data was stored separately, encrypted and that there was no evidence that it had been accessed.
It added that any members who used the same login details used on eBay for other sites should also update them.
eBay has not provided any information about the kind of encryption it used.
One expert said there was still a concern that the hackers might be able to make use of their haul.
Kim Kardashian came under fire this week after deciding to aid victims of the devastating Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines by selling off a boatload of items from her closet, a la Victoria Beckham.
Her initiative has sparked a firestorm of social media outrage after it was pointed out that only 10% of the proceeds were going to charity.
Kim Kardashian’s charitable eBay auction launched on Thursday with a number of gently used designer goods, including Christian Louboutin diamond-embellished platform pumps and a Givenchy white dress that she wore while pregnant with daughter North.
“Hi guys, this is a very special auction because a portion of the proceeds of my eBay auction are going to International Medical Corps, a nonprofit organization that provides critical health services on remote islands where families are struggling to access medical care and basic resources like food, clean drinking water and vital medications,” Kim Kardashian wrote on her website.
“The proceeds will go directly to the communities they’re serving in the Philippines and will help typhoon survivors get access to medical care and ultimately save lives. My prayers and thoughts are with those affected by the typhoon.”
Kim Kardashian came under fire after deciding to aid victims of the devastating Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines by selling off a boatload of items from her closet
Reaction to Kim Kardashian’s benevolent effort was swift and merciless.
“Kim #Kardashian is on eBay selling some of her clothes for charity. 10% goes to the charity. Hope that doesn’t break her! #generosity #vile,” tweeted one.
“What on earth does she need the money for?” asked another.
Kim Kardashian “consistently” auctions off her couture, explains her spokesperson, and always gives 10% of the money away (usually to her church).
It’s “something she learned from her father,” and she does it year-round, “not just when there’s a tragedy,” adds the rep.
For this particular auction, Kim Kardashian decided to change the beneficiary in order to help the Philippines, but she kept the percentage at the usual number.
Given how high end the items are (other designers represented include Chanel, Gucci, Lanvin and Balenciaga), a good chunk of change should be raised, even at the 10% rate.
Glenn Greenwald – The Guardian journalist who broke the Snowden leaks story – is to join a new media project being set up by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar.
Glenn Greenwald confirmed he was leaving The Guardian for the mass media outlet being planned by French-born billionaire Pierre Omidyar.
Laura Poitras, the documentary-maker who connected Glenn Greenwald with Edward Snowden, is also expected to join.
Edward Snowden leaked details of US government surveillance programmes.
He is now living in Russia, where he was granted temporary asylum after fleeing Hong Kong in June, shortly after the revelations were published.
On Wednesday, British PM David Cameron accused The Guardian of having knowingly compromised national security by publishing the leaks.
Glenn Greenwald is to join a new media project being set up by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar
Glenn Greenwald, a US citizen based in Brazil, insists that none of the information he published could have damaged national security.
Announcing his new project in a statement, Pierre Omidyar said he wanted to support “independent journalists in a way that leverages their work to the greatest extent possible, all in support of the public interest”.
His project, he said, was in its early stages but he had approached Glenn Greenwald and found that he and fellow Americans Poitras and Jeremy Scahill, an investigative journalist, were already contemplating something similar.
“We had a lot of overlap in terms of our ideas, and decided to join forces,” said Pierre Omidyar.
Pierre Omidyar said his new outlet would be independent of other media with the focus on allowing independent journalists to “pursue the truth in their fields”.
“And, I want to find ways to convert mainstream readers into engaged citizens,” he said in the statement.
Pierre Omidyar’s existing projects include the US-based Omidyar Network, a philanthropic investment firm which operates in some of Africa’s most troubled countries.
Forbes magazine estimated Pierre Omidyar ‘s net worth to be $8.5 billion (6.3 billion euros) last month.
Announcing his departure in a statement on Tuesday, Glenn Greenwald said he was embarking on a “once-in-a-career dream journalistic opportunity”.
Cliff Kluge from Georgia claims he has found the original top-secret recipe for Coca-Cola in an old box of papers he purchased from an estate.
Cliff Kluge is now trying to sell the formula on eBay for $15 million.
The Coca-Cola Company, which has turned the secrecy surrounding its 19th-century cola recipe into the stuff of legends, says the formula might come close to Coca-Cola, but it’s still not the real thing.
Cliff Kluge, an antiques dealer from Ringgold in northern Georgia, told WXIA-TV that he found the 1943 recipe in a box of personal papers and letters he purchased at an estate auction for a famous Georgia chemist.
He speculated that Coca-Cola might have sent the ingredient list to him because the company was having trouble obtaining all of the ingredients necessary during the war.
Cliff Kluge from Georgia claims he has found the original top-secret recipe for Coca-Cola in an old box of papers he purchased from an estate
“You don’t stumble on things like this very often. It’s a letter, and a formula, and the processes to make it,” Cliff Kluge said.
“I think it’s a little deeper than having fun; I think it’s the recipe for Coca-Cola.”
The original 1886 Coca-Cola formula, devised by Dr. John S Pemberton, has long been the source of speculation. The Coca-Cola Company says it keeps the recipe a close-guarded secret. The original is locked away in a vault at the World of Coca-Cola Museum at its headquarters in Atlanta.
“What I can discern about the formula is that it’s a formula for a cola-type drink. I don’t think it’s coca-cola. It can’t be coca-cola,” Ted Ryan, the Coca-Cola Company’s archivist and historian, told WXIA.
“This particular formula is one of dozens that have popped up over the years trying to emulate the flavor of Coca-Cola.”
Indeed, in 2011, NPR’s This American Life radio program published a formula that it reported was the original recipe.
The primary flavors were: vanilla, lime juice, lemon oil, orange oil, cinnamon oil and nutmeg oil.
Cliff Kluge has declined to reveal the formula in his Coca-Cola recipe.
The Georgia man also said he doubts that he will get millions for the formula – however he believes it is worth a few hundred thousand dollars.
A Halloween mask of alleged Colorado shooter James Holmes was put on eBay for $500 by an anonymous seller.
The creepy, rubber face with bright orange, curly hair led to widespread outrage and disgust, including from victims who were personally affected by the Aurora tragedy.
James Holmes, 24, is believed to have opened fire at the Aurora movie theater on July 20, killing 12 people and wounding 58 others.
The seller hid behind the tag “realface13” and advertised the gruesome disguise with the words: “SHOCK EVERYONE YOU KNOW!. There is nothing more scary than crawling into James Holmes mind and wearing his face.
“His <<soul penetrating eyes>> and <<The Joker>> orange hair makes this mask the most disturbing object you will ever own. Imagine owning the mask of supposedly the most dangerous mass murderer in US history.”
Halloween mask of alleged Colorado shooter James Holmes was put on eBay for $500 by an anonymous seller
The mask was said to have been designed for a private collector. The item was taken off the site by eBay on Friday after being viewed 1,133 times – however no one had placed a bid on it.
Josh Nolan, a father-of-two who was shot at the midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises, told ABC: “Are you kidding me? That just took the cake right there. I’m too upset to think about it.”
It is the policy of eBay to remove products considered offensive which includes those that attempt to profit from disaster or human tragedy. Other banned items are those related to the KKK, Nazis or violent felons.