Here is a list of product releases and updates for late July from companies that offer services to online merchants. There are updates on website builders, social commerce, live stream video, fulfillment, product authentication, and open-source ecommerce.
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Ecommerce Product Releases
Squarespace launches Fluid Engine. Squarespace, a website building and ecommerce platform, has announced the launch of Fluid Engine, a customizable web design experience for desktop and mobile through an advanced drag-and-drop smart grid. Users will have a new level of control when arranging page layouts, layering, alignment, full bleed positioning, and more. While Squarespace’s templates and staged layout options will remain available, the Fluid Engine integration gives access to a new editing paradigm.
Small businesses can now sell directly in chats on Instagram. Meta has introduced a new way to sell on Instagram: directly through chat. With this new feature, qualified small businesses can request and collect payments. In addition, sellers can chat with shoppers in real-time and create a payment request with item description and price. Shoppers can chat about product customizations, track orders, and ask follow-up questions.
Venmo Small Business Grant applications available. PayPal has announced the Venmo Small Business Grant, a new program for emerging and small businesses that will provide financial grants and mentorship services to 20 new and existing Venmo Business Profile customers. Each selected company will receive $10,000 to cover expenses, such as rent, web development, or promotion. To apply for the Grant, entrants must set up a Business Profile and complete an application by August 11, 2022. Venmo will announce grant recipients in September 2022 based on an evaluation from the judging committee. More details are available on the program’s landing page.
CommentSold launches Videeo for live video. CommentSold, a live selling platform, has announced the launch of Videeo, a white-label, live video commerce technology for enterprises. Videeo allows retailers to deliver branded live video commerce experiences by integrating live selling into a retailer’s existing ecommerce stack. Shoppers can make purchases by streaming live shoppable videos via their preferred channel via the merchant’s website, social media platforms, or mobile apps. Transactions occur on the retailer’s existing ecommerce checkout.
Amazon launches Seller Wallet. Over the next few months, Amazon will roll out its new Seller Wallet tool to simplify global selling. This early-stage payment feature gives sellers a hassle-free way to hold, view, and transfer Amazon store proceeds directly to their bank account on their schedule — all within Seller Central. Enrolling in Amazon Seller Wallet requires no cost or minimum amount, and account maintenance is free. When sellers convert and transfer funds, volume-based currency conversion and international transfer fees will apply. Seller Wallet is now available to a select number of small businesses. Amazon plans to collect feedback from sellers and continue to refine the tool.
Amazon updates Account Health Rating. Amazon released its new and improved Account Health Rating to help sellers adhere to its policies and maintain good account health. In August, Amazon will begin rolling out the latest version of the Account Health Rating to sellers in its U.S. and Canada stores and sellers in other worldwide stores in 2023. The new Account Health Rating is an easy-to-understand metric that gives sellers an overall account assessment — “Healthy,” “At-Risk,” or “Unhealthy.” The new rating system will be the determining factor for account suspension based on accumulated policy violations. For outstanding violations that negatively impact the rating, a seller can view the severity level of each breach and prioritize the most critical issues first. Amazon will have a dedicated Account Health Specialists team to support sellers over the phone or via email in getting their accounts back on track.
osCommerce launches the latest version of its free shopping cart. After a five-year wait, osCommerce launched its new version of the free shopping cart and open-source ecommerce platform. A significant upgrade from osCommerce 2.x and its forks, osCommerce v4 is modern, feature-rich software designed for businesses of any size. It is pre-integrated with the osCommerce app shop. osCommerce v4 is mobile and search-engine-optimization friendly and includes multiple sale channels, design themes, a visual editor, content management system, advanced stock and product management features, open API, and more.
eBay launches authentication for fine jewelry. In collaboration with the Gemological Institute of America, eBay’s Authenticity Guarantee service has expanded to include fine jewelry from top luxury brands. New and pre-owned fine jewelry sold for at least $500 will be eligible. The offering will expand to include top designer brands such as Bvlgari, Van Cleef & Arpels, David Yurman, Cartier, and Tiffany & Co. This marks the expansion of eBay’s authentication service, which includes sneakers, watches, handbags, and trading cards.
Perpetua launches Amazon Demand-Side Platform. Perpetua, a player in ecommerce advertising software, is now offering a self-serve platform for creating, optimizing, and measuring Amazon Demand-Side Platform (DSP) ads. Perpetua’s Amazon DSP Optimization empowers users to build each component of a DSP order in a single, linear workflow. Advertisers can (i) seamlessly create Amazon DSP orders paired with 11 pre-built audience templates, (ii) generate audiences and creatives, and attach them to line items, and (iii) target your intended audience, no matter how broad or narrow in scope.
ShipBob announces Delivered Duty Paid. ShipBob, a global fulfillment platform, has announced Delivered Duty Paid, a shipping service now available throughout all 30 ShipBob fulfillment centers in the United States, United Kingdom, and Ireland — and for brands with their own warehouse that use ShipBob’s in-house fulfillment platform, Merchant Plus. ShipBob merchants can now enable shoppers to ship to more than 200 countries while bypassing the complexities of value-added tax and other fees while streamlining customs clearance. To power DDP, ShipBob has integrated with FlavorCloud, a cross-border shipping platform. ShipBob’s artificial intelligence-powered technology automatically selects the most optimal fulfillment center, then delivers the best shipping rates based on its carrier network and guaranteed DDP options, allowing brands a seamless way to reach a global market.
Amazon’s custom electric delivery vehicles from Rivian are rolling out across the U.S. Consumers in the U.S. will begin to see custom electric delivery vehicles from Rivian delivering their Amazon packages. The electric vehicles will hit the road in Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Kansas City, Nashville, Phoenix, San Diego, Seattle, and St. Louis, among other cities. The rollout is the beginning of likely thousands of Amazon’s custom electric delivery vehicles in more than 100 cities by the end of this year — and 100,000 across the U.S. by 2030. Amazon has added thousands of charging stations at its delivery stations across the country and will continue to invest in building an infrastructure to support a more sustainable delivery fleet. Additionally, Amazon has partnered with the sustainability nonprofit Ceres and several other fleet operators to launch the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance, bringing together companies to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles.