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Ecommerce 15% Growth in 2018, Etsy’s Carbon Free Delivery Pledge and eBay’s Turnaround Plan

U.S. retail sales and ecommerce growth

2018 Ecommerce Grows 15%

2018 was a good year for the ecommerce industry with 15% growth. Customer spent $517.36 billion online in the United States, up from $449.88 billion the year prior. It is a small slowdown from 2017 where growth was 15.6% year over year. Total retail sales hit $3.628 trillion last year, which was up 3.9% year over year from $3.490 trillion. In the retail market, ecommerce accounted for 14.3% share of total retail sales in 2018, which was up 12.9% in 2017 and 11.6% in 2016. With this being said, ecommerce has a solid start to 2018.

What stood out to us? We see a trend. We see a trend. We see a trend.

Why should you care? Be right back, the Amazon delivery person just dropped a box at the door.

*Chart from

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Etsy’s Carbon Free Home Delivery Pledge

The crafty items you buy on Etsy now come with a price, but not in the way you may think. Etsy is pledging that some of the fossil fuels it takes to get your package to your door will be offset by green investments. Etsy, an ecommerce company based in New York known for selling vintage and handmade items, announced it will buy carbon offsets as a means to manage environmental impact of shipping products. Carbon offsets allow companies emitting greenhouse gases to purchase credits from a green project reducing carbon in the atmosphere. This move makes Etsy one of the first U.S ecommerce companies to take this type of environmentally-friendly step forward. “The free shipping we’re used to actually isn’t free,” said Chelsea Mozen, sustainability lead at Etsy. “When people think of the environmental impact from ecommerce, they immediately jump to packaging—but emissions from shipping has a big environmental cost.”

What stood out to us? Etsy is going green, and not with envy.

Why should you care? This seems to be a trend.

eBay logo

eBay’s Turnaround Plan

Ebay is working on a turnaround plan after months of road bumps, layoffs and strongly worded letters. The online marketplace has reached an agreement with Elliott Management Corporation and Starboard Value and is appointing two new directors, Elliott partner Jesse Cohn and Matt Murphy of Marvell Technology Group Ltd. Ebay stated it is planning a strategic review of portfolio assets, such as StubHub and the Classifieds Group. Elliott disclosed 4% eBay stake in January, and announced a five-point plan for improvement, such as looking at a spinoff of StubHub. If eBay follows Elliott’s proposals, the hedge fund states shares could be valued at $55 to $63. “We all share common ground: we see tremendous opportunity ahead and want to see eBay’s full potential realized over the long-term,” eBay CEO Devin Wenig said. “The initiatives we are announcing today are the result of this constructive dialogue.”

What stood out to us? Persuasive writing + math + charts = super hot!

Why should you care? Read the strongly worded letters. Jesse Cohn is the George Clooney of portfolio managers.

In the headlines

  • One third of 2018 US ecommerce sales: It’s no surprise Amazon grabbed that spot.
  • Costco takes the lead: For online customer satisfaction, that is. And yes, they beat Amazon in this category.
  • Target on point: The company opened a new online marketplace.
  • The end of a postal era: is planning on ending its partnership with USPS.
  • Tesla says goodbye to retail stores: The company is shifting its strategy to online-only.

Before you go

Read this if...

You want to see which industries have major online potential.

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You want to see changes in technology spending from 2018 to 2019.

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Success in ecommerce is killing the economics of cheap home delivery.

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If you want to hear about representation of women in retail. The numbers are stark.

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