Facebook testing new Buy Button for purchases within the social platform

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Major platforms on the Internet like Google and Facebook have depended for years on advertising revenue from companies buying space on the pages displayed to users. As companies continue to squeeze the sales channel in a never-ending quest for revenue, the issue of conversion between a customer finding an ad for something they want to buy and actually making a purchase is receiving a lot of attention. Google has already indicated they are working on improving their shopping experience. Now it appears Facebook is also working on the problem and has started testing a new Buy button that will work within their site.
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Google reportedly working on major plans to take on Amazon

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Although Google is recognized as the giant amongst search engines, much to the delight of advertisers, it is not the “go to” shopping destination for many consumers. That title may be claimed by Amazon which has built an empire on the sales of books which led to a portfolio of just about anything one may want to buy. This means Google is missing out on an opportunity to help advertisers close the deal on the ads they are serving up with search results and it means advertisers may want to focus more resources on Amazon’s platform. To combat this, Google is reportedly amassing a war chest to expand their Google Shopping Express service beyond the limited markets where it is available.
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Amazon app updated with new icon, single sign on, bug fixes

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Amazon’s Android app was updated recently in order to promote a new image and introduce a single sign-on feature across all Amazon apps.

The application now has a brand new icon, clearly promoting the online shopping aspect of the company.

The single sign-on feature will work across Amazon’s Android applications — when you sign into the Amazon app, you’ll automatically be signed into other Amazon apps, including Kindle and the Amazon Appstore.

Support for devices under Android 2.3 was dropped as well, and some bug fixes were added to the update. Hit the break for the link to the app in the Play Store.


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Google Now aims to make your shopping life a little easier

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We previously reported that Google Now helps your shopping at a mall easier by providing you a list of what stores are available in that mall. Now it looks like the much popular assistant will also aim to make shopping easier on yourself by reminding you of products that you’ve searched for and if they’re in the area (if you’re currently near a store).

Let us know if these “shopping cards” have popped up for you already!

source: Google+

Google expands Google Shopping Express service to NYC, LA areas

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Google has announced an expansion of their Google Shopping Express micro-delivery service to Manhattan and the West Los Angeles area. These join the San Francisco Bay area as locations with access to the service. Google indicates they plan to continue to expand to other areas around Los Angeles as well as Queens and Brooklyn in the New York City area.
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Amazon’s new Dash device makes grocery shopping extremely easy

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Amazon recently announced a new device that will make grocery shopping with AmazonFresh extremely easy.

Amazon’s new Dash is a thin long device that works much like a remote control. The device has a microphone and a barcode scanner to which you can speak into the microphone with the name of a product or even scan the barcode of a particular product to have it added to your Amazon Fresh account.

Amazon is offering the device as a trial-basis and to get one, you’ll have to be a customer of Amazon Prime Fresh which is only available to customers in San Francisco and Los Angeles. The Prime Fresh subscription costs $300 year and is only available in a few cities.
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Google adds several products from Play Store to Shopping Express service, guarantees Christmas delivery

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If you’ve accidentally put off your Christmas shopping to the last minute, you’ll be happy to know Google is trying to lend a hand to the late shoppers. Thanks to Google’s Shopping Express service, you’ll be able to get a handful of Google Play products delivered before Christmas. In fact, anything ordered up until 5 PM on Christmas Eve is guaranteed to make it to your home in time for Santa to stop by.

There are a few catches here, obviously. First off, Google only offers the service in a select few areas, namely in the San Francisco and San Jose areas. Anywhere else in the US, and you can’t take advantage of the service. Secondly, Google isn’t offering everything in the Play Store. You’ll be able to pick up a few things like a Chromecast or a Nexus 7 tablet, but selection is pretty limited based on stock availability. Right now, the Chromecast, 16 GB Nexus 7, 32 GB Nexus 10, and white Nexus 7 folio case are available, but that will likely fluctuate a bit until Christmas.

source: Google Commerce Blog

Google Shopping now shows local results and product listings

google_shopping_localGoogle Shopping is going through a few changes, most dealing with the implementation of local results. When a user searches for an item on Google, either desktop or smartphone, local store results will show up in addition to online results. Clicking on a local result will take the user to a local storefront page, where they can see the store’s inventory, managed through Google Merchant Center.

These new features for local businesses are currently only available for a limited number of retailers, but local merchants interested can fill out a form on Google’s website.

Source: Google Commerce Blog

Best Android apps to help you plan the perfect party or get together [August 2013]

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Preparing for parties used to be such a hassle. The stressful process of building a guest list, sending out invitations, finding the perfect foods, struggling while looking through your liquor cabinet, and of course planning what games you were going to play became tiring and took the joy out of setting it all up. With a little technology, you can enjoy the whole process again. Leave it to Android apps to help you plan the best party possible! Hit the break for what we feel are the best apps for planning your next big party.


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New QThru app to enhance brick and mortar shopping experience

QThru, the provider of a mobile point-of-sale platform, announced today new apps for Android and iOS that will enable users to shop and checkout at physical stores using only their smartphone. The app gives you the ability to scan barcodes of items to add them to your shopping cart, then use a function called Q-Code to pay via a kiosk with the total transmitted to the account you have connected with the app. Beyond the in-store experience, the app provides other functions, like the ability to create shopping lists, find deals, create favorite items, research item details, and track total spending. QThru also indicates the app has a custom scale solution to handle purchases of produce or other items by weight.

Read the full press release below and then hit the download links to install the app on your device before heading out to find a participating retail store.
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