FORTUNE -- Retailers and analysts have dubbed today "Green Monday," another opportunity (one week after "Cyber Monday" to promote online specials and bolster sales numbers. For retailing giant Wal-Mart (WMT), which says it already has seen record online traffic and sales this holiday season, Green Monday represents another chance to not only surpass its ambitious e-commerce numbers, but to find ways to link its e-store and apps to its more than 3,800 Walmart stores in the U.S.
Wal-Mart executives have said they want to make online and physical shopping experiences to complement each other. If a store is sold out of an item, for example, Wal-Mart customers should be able to go on their smartphones or tablets and easily find the same item. Neil Ashe, Wal-Mart's president and CEO of global e-commerce, described the company's strategy in an interview earlier this year at Brainstorm Tech conference.
Joel Anderson, president and CEO of Walmart.com, tells Fortune that the company's efforts at online-offline synergy are starting to pay off. "Mobile visits made over 50% of the visits to Walmart.com," he says. In addition, Anderson has noticed more consumers using their mobile devices to check prices and reviews while in physical Wal-Marts as well as order online and pick up at a brick-and-mortar location.
To be sure, online commerce still represents a small fraction of Wal-Mart's annual sales. The company, ranked No. 1 title on the Fortune 500 list, raked in $466 billion in sales in 2012. Executives have projected the retailer's online sales would hit about $10 billion this year, but Anderson says it is "is in a position to exceed" that forecast. (Amazon.com (AMZN), ranked No. 56 on the Fortune 500, last year had more than $48 billion in revenue.)
Anderson declined to disclose revenues for Cyber Monday, but he says that it was the biggest online sales day in the history of Wal-Mart. It capped a bustling shopping period that Wal-Mart in a press release describes as "the highest five-day stretch in online sales for the retailer to date."
But who would have guessed that the old iPad Mini would come in second?
FORTUNE -- There are several curious findings in Localytics' attached chart comparing the post-Black Friday/Cyber Monday presence of various devices on its analytics network with their presence the previous week.
That Apple's (AAPL) new iPad Air grew the most (51%) is not terribly surprising. But who would have guessed that...
Gains for the much maligned iPhone 5C (up 26%) would MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 4, 2013 10:38 AM ET
It looks like it might be an iPad Christmas after all.
FORTUNE -- Some Apple (AAPL) analysts didn't wait for stores to open on Cyber Monday before weighing in on early reports that iPad sales were leading the 2013 holiday buying frenzy.
Here's what we've seen so far. More as they come in.
After spot-checking Black Friday weekend sales, Deutsche Bank's Chris Whitmore raised his price target to $625 from $575. "We have become MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 2, 2013 8:36 AM ET
When you're selling a device at cost you can't really make it up in volume
FORTUNE -- From the start, Amazon's (AMZN) plan for the Kindle family of tablets and e-readers was to sell a compelling device at or below cost that would direct customers to Amazon's online stores.
"We want to make money when people use our devices," CEO Jeff Bezos often says, in a remark widely seen as directed at MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 27, 2012 8:43 AM ET
A deeper look at the surge in Black Friday shopping by smartphone and tablet
FORTUNE -- One of the paradoxes of IBM's Thanksgiving and Black Friday shopping report was that Apple (AAPL) mobile devices -- especially the iPad -- led the surge in online shopping, and not the Android devices that have been steadily gaining market share.
Over the weekend, Asymco's Horace Dediu took a closer look at IBM's data, which he's been tracking MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 26, 2012 8:01 AM ET
10% of online purchases -- and 88% of tablet purchases -- were made on an iPad
FORTUNE -- Apple (AAPL) devices loomed larger than expected in IBM's (IBM) final report on this year's surge of online buying Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday.
Online sales were up both days -- 17.4% and 20.7%, respectively -- from 2011. But the biggest surge came from mobile devices -- and in particular from purchases made on MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 25, 2012 8:46 AM ET
Have we grown weary yet of comparing the two companies' retail efforts?
FORTUNE -- Colorado-based MacWeekend.com took a videocamera to Lone Tree's Park Meadow Mall, one of a growing number of high-end "retail resorts" that house both Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) retail outlets. The comparison is a bit unfair, as the Apple Store is considerably smaller and therefore feels busier.
"Left: worship," writes Herb Herbert in the YouTube comment field. "Right: MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 24, 2012 9:38 AM ET
With refreshes across 80% of its product line, Apple devices are hot Black Friday sellers
FORTUNE -- There was a lot of chatter about Apple (AAPL) in the sales reports for Black Friday 2012.
Topeka Capital's Brian White ran down the 7% to 31% discounts in Apple's Black Friday "Come and Give It" sale -- the only day of the year Apple offers deals on any of its products. "We believe this MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 23, 2012 10:21 AM ET
PC sales were down 8% Thanksgiving week, but demand for the MacBook Air was strong
In a note to clients Thursday, Morgan Stanley's Katy Huberty rattled off several reasons to explain why retail sales of personal computers in the U.S. were down 8% year over year for the week of Nov. 20 to 26, as reported by the NPD Group.
Hard drive shortages, the lingering effects of flooding in Thailand
Price reductions in MORE
As a companion piece to the comScore report Monday that Americans have spent a record $18.7 billion online so far this holiday season -- up 15% from last year -- consider this chart from Compuware APM showing the relative contributions of the two leading platforms for what it calls "couch commerce": Apple's (AAPL) iPad and iPhone.
Together, according to an earlier IBM study, the two devices accounted for 10.2% of Black Friday's online MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Dec 5, 2011 11:10 AM ET
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