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A story we have covered several times in previous episodes, a number of companies are adding interactive shopping support through various platforms. The most recent addition, since their holiday livestream was successful beyond expectations, Walmart recently held its second TikTok livestream sale. Other social media platforms and entertainment sites are also jumping on board the consumer train Instagram launched "Shopping in Reels" in December, allowing users to purchase products tagged within the Reels. Google released Shoploop where consumers can shop products being demonstrated by brands and influencers through 90 second videos. And now Mashable has partnered with eBay to add shopping tag icons in articles and images for readers to buy the items.

2021 Spring Canton Fair is online and it is Freeeeeeeee!

The Canton Fair is usually held in Guangzhou China, between 4 event halls covering 12,174,000 sq ft. Due to COVID travel restrictions, the event will be held April 15-24th and it will be 100% online.The Canton Fair has set up messaging with suppliers as well as needed translations. There will be 16 main categories with a wide range of products and manufacturers, and they’ve even got Virtual Reality set up so you can get up close and personal with exhibits, some products as well as the manufacturer’s home office. But get your computer ready because each click brings up a new tab on your browser. We’ve included the website below.

Walmart tackles automated fulfillment putting Amazon in their cross hairs

Fabric robotics is showing retailers that a micro-fulfillment center can be established almost anywhere. As an example, Israel’s largest supermarket has a working fulfillment center set up in a 15,000 sq ft space manned by just 6 employees and dozens of robots… in the parking garage of a Tel Aviv skyscraper.Walmart is looking to use this “half man, half machine” micro-fulfilment center to better compete with Amazon’s massive fulfilment network. This is a format others are sure to follow and very soon. Grocery stores and big box stores are rethinking their delivery options to keep up with consumer demands and online competition. COVID has accelerated the growth of online retail and innovative ways in which they connect with customers. This could give Walmart the needed edge to stay competitive with Amazon. Definitely something to keep an eye on.

Amazon to close inactive accounts

Emails are being sent out alerting Sellers that inactive accounts will be closed. What is an inactive account? If you don’t log into your SellerCentral account in the next 9 months, it will be deleted. So if you aren’t going to use that old account, now is the time to sell it or at least log in if you don’t want it deleted!4 March 2021 Email from Amazon:
To protect our customers, we close accounts that have been inactive for extended periods of time.In the next 10 months, please log into Seller Central to continue using Sell on Amazon and to avoid having your account terminated. You can access Seller Central via the link below: you do not log into Seller Central in the given time, your account will be considered inactive.
Sincerely,The Amazon Payments Team

Amazon is piloting a program to liquidate inventory

As you well know, sellers have two costly ways to handle customer returns & stranded or excess inventory: 1. send it back to you or 2. Amazon disposes of it (and possibly sells it on your listing). A new program is being piloted that gives more options.One of the new programs is called “FBA Grade and Resell as Used”. This program is for customer-opened returns and Amazon will have employees grade the returned items as one of the following: dispose, acceptable, good, very good or like new. The other new program is called “FBA Liquidations” and is for excess stock. Amazon works as the go between to broker a deal selling the stock you want to liquidate to a third party. You can recoup some cash for those cell phone cases you/we bombed out on. Danan: Yeah, that’s right, I’m looking at you… me... 

Amazon Prime Day Is On for 2021

Amazon recently began informing sellers about Prime Day, including a post on the Amazon UK Seller Central board.While Amazon keeps the exact date a secret until much closer to the event, it must inform sellers of deadlines for submitting deals. In the UK, the deadline for submitting Prime Day Lighting Deals is April 23rd, and May 28, 2021 for Prime Member Voucher. It’s time to get stocked up and submit for deals!