May 16, 2018 · Volume 14
'Business jujitsu' is a term that I find myself using pretty frequently these days, in reference to the contorted relationships that many businesses find themselves in with companies that have complementary assets, but also compete with each other.
A weekly newsletter curated by our principal analyst, Ken Cassar, with analysis and commentary from Slice Intelligence.
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May 7, 2018 · Volume 13
I'm excited to be heading back to Nashville again, this time for a presentation at the annual Category Management and Shopper Marketing conference [or CatMan, as we say in the biz]. We've worked up some new Slice research looking into changing trends in CPG shopping trips.
April 23, 2018 · Volume 12
Best Buy and Amazon announced an interesting [and complicated] deal last week wherein Best Buy agreed to carry smart TVs from Toshiba and Insignia (Best Buy's private label brand) loaded with Amazon's Fire TV operating system. The brands will be sold in its brick and mortar stores and exclusively in a Best Buy storefront on Amazon.com. Best Buy's Insignia smart TVs had been powered by Roku previously, and the news of this deal sent Roku's shares down 9 percent.
April 16, 2018 · Volume 11
Last week, Adore Me, the online seller of lingerie, announced that it would open seven to 10 stores this year, 20 stores next year, and up to 300 over the next five years. Victoria's Secret, the established brand that Adore Me hopes to disrupt [which, in the tech business means that Adore Me hopes to either kill or compel Victoria's Secret or a competitor to buy Adore Me at a silly dot-com valuation] has struggled as of late.
April 2, 2018 · Volume 9
Last week, Google rolled out a new program, called Google Shopping Actions, in an effort to slow Amazon's conquest of e-commerce. Amazon's market share is formidable enough, but the bee in Google's Easter bonnet is the fact that the majority [56 percent according to this study] of online product related searching now starts on Amazon.
March 22, 2018 · Volume 8
The fact that any alcohol is bought and sold online -- at all -- is a testament to the human spirit, or at least to humans' desire to consume spirits [and beer and wine].
March 9, 2018 · Volume 6
In preparing for a presentation at next week's Path to Purchase Summit in Chicago, I asked our heroic Analyst team [yes, I am not above apple polishing when it comes to those that provide the fuel for our thought leadership flames] to refresh our data on voice-powered speakers.
March 2, 2018 · Volume 5
If you don't have a favorite podcast and you're reading the E-Commerce Observer, let me direct you to my favorite, The Jason and Scot Show. In a recent episode (#117), one of the hosts, Scot Wingo, made the argument that it is virtually impossible that US e-commerce is only growing at the 16 percent year over year rate that the US Commerce department reports.
February 22, 2018 · Volume 4
If you aren't familiar with the startup MoviePass, you soon will be. It aspires to be the Netflix of the movie theater business, adding some energy to a segment of the entertainment industry that has languished because our TV screens are getting bigger and our in-home video entertainment options are getting better.
February 14, 2018 · Volume 3
The meal kit solution space continues to create news, and is on the mind of many food brands and grocery retailers. Tyson Foods invested an undisclosed sum in a company called Tovala, a startup that aspires to be the 'Netflix of food'.
February 7, 2018 · Volume 2
In preparing for a conference presentation in Nashville later this week, I've been thinking about the pace of change in the U.S. consumer economy and core competencies [also, country music and hot chicken]. Perhaps it's my puritanical New England upbringing, but I am naturally wired to believe that greatness requires focus, and that focus means getting really, really good at a small number of things.