A Year of Hope
January 1, 2010

You did it; the holidays are over! Even though the massive lines, the confused and angry customers and the overplayed holiday tunes may be gone for another year, holiday returns have already started coming in. I hope everyone has built a strong social foundation by now, one that will handle returns and exchanges better than…

Online Holiday Sales Top Record Number Dec. 15
December 21, 2009

For the holiday season-to-date, $24.8 billion has been spent online, showing a 4 percent increase versus the corresponding days last year, according to comScore (NASDAQ: SCOR), a company that measures e-commerce spending.

The Unintended CE Consequences of the Media Shuffle
October 27, 2009

No matter how the NBC Universal dance with Comcast comes out or whether the Disney "KeyChest" multi-platform digital plan evolves, they - or similar deals - will affect the ways in which Americans watch video programming.  These kinds of ventures will eventually redraw the media landscape, defining the scope and capabilities of devices on which those programs will be consumed.

Electronics, Entertainment Fare Well in Nielsen Social Network Tally
September 25, 2009

  Social networks are hot, and Nielsen's measurement of how Americans use them offers dramatic new data about growth and the displacement factor.  Last month, Americans spent 17% of their online time using social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, nearly triple the percentage spent a year ago, according to Nielsen data unveiled last week. The use of social networks and blogs "suggests a wholesale change in the way the Internet is used," said John Gibs, a Nielsen vice president.

eBook Avalanche Spurring Enthusiasm, Questions
August 10, 2009

The rapid assault of eBook announcements from Amazon, Sony and Barnes & Noble plus the looming launch of more products from Sony, Samsung, Acer and others raises countless questions about the business prospects for this new category.  Among the quandaries is the role of traditional consumer electronics dealers in this new product mix.   

Virtual Goods Selling Well Among Online Customers
August 2, 2009

Nearly one-eighth of online users bought something - usually entertainment content or game tokens of some sort - from a virtual vendor, spending an average of $30  and auguring even greater sales as the universe of customers grows.  Frank N. Magid Associates, the research firm, and PlaySpan, an online games monetization promoter, unveiled a new study last week that suggests a ravenous appetite not only for e-commerce, but for buying virtual products, including mobile "apps."

As I Was Saying ...
July 28, 2009

Welcome to a new weekly report on digital finance, tech policy and commentary. Drawing on 30+ years of experience covering Washington and Wall Street, Gary Arlen returns to the Dealerscope family with insights to help you navigate the "digital" and "capital" aspects of the business during these days when the policy implications have broader impact and the people making these decisions are often new faces to the industry.

Retailers Seek Piece of the Action As TV Set Makers, Studios Accelerate Content Deals
July 28, 2009

Look for a lot more experimentation and frustration as Hollywood and video equipment manufacturers tinker with new ways to handle Web-delivered digital content directly to the living room. Despite a few recent deals - such as this month's Best Buy/TiVo alliance and the Blockbuster/Samsung collaboration - the role of retailers in this new home video assault is still very murky.

Congress Expands Exam of e-Commerce Technology
June 8, 2009

Two subcommittees of the House Commerce Committee will run an unusual joint session, probably as soon as next week, to investigate the technology and uses of “behavioral targeting,” a controversial system that electronic marketers are exploring to reach specific online customers.The Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet,  chaired by Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA), and the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection, chaired by Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL), are expected to announce that their session will be held next Thursday, June 18.

How Online Content Drives In-Store Results
November 6, 2008

It is now an overwhelmingly common practice for shoppers to research products online before buying them in a store. How common? The National Retail Federation reports that more than 90 percent of consumers research a product online prior to making a purchase in a store. Moreover, 92.5 percent of adults said they regularly or occasionally research products online before buying them in a store, according to BIGresearch.