Amazon.com reported profits climbed 9%, to $225 million, on revenues that increased 18%, to $6.7 billion, in the fourth quarter. The online-shopping giant has been able to buck the economy's downward trend by aggressively opening new product categories and offering steep discounts and free shipping.
Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu ranked the largest retailers around the globe according to their fiscal 2007 sales and found that overseas retail chains are moving up the list. While the U.S.'s Wal-Mart Stores remained No. 1 and France's Carrefour stayed in the No. 2 spot, Britain's Tesco and Germany's Metro climbed up a spot to round out the top four. Home Depot dropped to fifth. The trend is likely to continue, according to Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu.
In what's described here as a potential "case study" to show the clout of online influencers, David Armano, creator of the Logic + Emotion blog, last week used Twitter to raise almost $15,000 within 24 hours for a friend in need. The episode shows the power of developing influence through small interactions over time, the importance of networking through other contacts' connections, and the power of "authenticity," according to this article.
Trusting a Web site topped the list for shoppers when deciding whether to buy something online, a VeriSign survey showed. A large majority, 85%, said that was important when sharing personal information, and 93% said they wouldn't buy anything from a site that wasn't secure.