Wanelo: Like a Digital Mall That Makes Online Shopping Social

Deena Varshavskaya launched Wanelo, a platform for both online shopping and social networking, in 2012. Two years later, the site has 11 million users and access to 12 million products and 300,000 stores worldwide, from big brand names to small boutiques. The image-intensive site allows users to browse, share, and purchase products immediately. Wanelo does not stock the products itself, but rather, every product is linked to a store’s online site. Continue reading Wanelo: Like a Digital Mall That Makes Online Shopping Social

More Retailers Tracking Shoppers with Sensor Technologies

Sensor devices used to track shoppers are becoming more commonplace in shopping malls this holiday season. The devices, often scattered through malls to identify shoppers’ movements, help retailers track how long people are waiting in line and pinpoint where they’re shopping. Some even use heat maps to show where within a store most people are gravitating. The Future of Privacy Forum estimates that approximately 1,000 retailers are using sensors. Continue reading More Retailers Tracking Shoppers with Sensor Technologies

Amazon Opens Pop-Up Stores to Market Tablets and E-Readers

Seattle-based Amazon is promoting Kindle tablets and e-readers in a pop-up shop in a San Francisco mall, providing a glimpse at what the online retailer could look like in a physical space. Amazon is also offering devices, branded covers and power adapters via vending machines. While Amazon has been expected by some to follow Apple and Microsoft in opening brick-and-mortar storefronts, the company said it has no immediate plans to do so. Continue reading Amazon Opens Pop-Up Stores to Market Tablets and E-Readers

Google Taps a New Market with Indoor Mapping at Malls and Airports

  • Google is adding indoors maps for select malls, airports and transit stations with the release of Google Maps 6.0 for Android.
  • “Detailed floor plans automatically appear when you’re viewing the map and zoomed in on a building where indoor map data is available,” explains The Official Google Blog. “The familiar ‘blue dot’ icon indicates your location within several meters, and when you move up or down a level in a building with multiple floors, the interface will automatically update to display which floor you’re on.”
  • Initial partnerships include locations in the U.S. and Japan: Mall of America, IKEA, Home Depot, select Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, Chicago O’Hare, San Francisco International Airport, and others.
  • “Apart from the obvious advantage to users who would now find it easy to navigate through buildings, we also expect the indoor map feature to provide a significant advertising opportunity,” reports Forbes. “Retailer locations in malls and airports would now show up on the map, and they should be interested in highlighting any new deals and promotions on the map users as soon as users enter the building.”
  • Last month, Google announced that more than 200 million Android devices have been activated worldwide, more than double what was reported by the company in May.