E-shopping to double
Australia is on the verge of an expansive third wave in e-commerce that will see online shopping double in the next 12 months, according to the 2001 e-Retail Report. While only 10 per cent of Australians currently shop online, this is expected to jump to 25 per cent by the end of next year. Released by Pinpoint Research Services, the report's author, Tim Walsh said the $340 million spent online in Australia in the past year will jump to $500 million by the end of 2002. B2C e-commerce, he said, is entering a new, more intelligent phase. "Now is the time to dust off those e-business plans that were filed away with the dotcom collapse and for Australian retailers to reconsider the market," he said.
Federated trims tree
US retail conglomerate Federated Department Stores has announced plans to pare back its e-commerce operations in a cost-cutting move that will result in the loss of about 30 IT jobs. Under the plan, which is scheduled for completion by February 1, the company will narrow the focus of its two online retail sites, Macys.com and Bloomingdales.com. The Bloomingdale's site will stop selling products and become a marketing vehicle for the retail chain's bricks-and-mortar stores, while the Macy's site will eliminate weak-selling merchandise categories. About 100 workers will be let go as part of the restructuring.
AIPC dons new shoes
Australian Information Processing Centre (AIPC) Multimedia has branched out into shoes, announcing its e-commerce site for Figgins Holdings with its Shoo Biz online initiative. The site includes an online catalogue with sales and purchase facilities by phone or e-mail. "Since the launch we have experienced a significant increase in the number of sales and enquiries," said Figgins operations manager Ross Malarbi. "Sales figures for the Web site have been higher than we initially expected."