App Store Bug boosts in the Top Charts

Anumber of smaller,paid applicationsscoreda spot on the App Stores Top Grossing chart over the weekend in what mayhave been either the test of a new App Store algorithm or a fairly significant bug. The issue began on Friday, and only seemed to affect the Top Grossing apps, butnot the other charts, like Top Free or Top Paid apps.

However, the Top Grossing Charts were affected across all App Store categories, not just themain Top Grossing chart for the whole App Store.

As one developer noted, their app had dropped from the No. 2 position in their category to the No. 35 position.This is what first alerted them to the problem, as they had just finished a very strong day and were having what may be their best month to date.

Throughout the weekend, apps that typically ranked well on the Top Grossing charts fell, while other, less popular apps tooktheir place. It appeared as if the algorithm was now favoring paid apps over those that monetized using in-app purchases.

For example, the algorithm shift benefited some emoji apps, like Steph Currys StephMoji.But while its somewhat plausible that a handful ofemoji apps had seen some sort of sudden popularity, others hitting the charts seemed out-of-place, like the more niche Construction Manager Pro or a $15 text translator app. (See below).

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Image Credit: Sensor Tower

One theory put forth by softwaremaker Equinux is that Apple was experimenting with a new algorithm that would put less weight on things like recurring subscription revenue, and more on paid apps.

This would make sense, given how stagnant the Top Grossing charts have become.

Today, the App Stores Top Grossing charts are often dominated by evergreen games, like Supercells Clash Royale, Candy Crush or Pokmon GO, for instance, along with top streaming services such as Netflix, Pandora, Spotify and others.

 

Though Apple more recently opened subscriptions to a wider varietyof app businesses, the popularity of subscriptions has led to Top Grossing charts thatconsistently feature the same apps. This makes it harder for new apps to break in, and makes the charts less interesting to browse.

Following the change, paid apps were competing on equal terms with subscription-based apps, as the new algorithm appeared to only include new and first-time subscriptions, not renewals.

For indie apps, the change was welcome, as they finally got a chance at ranking in this section alongside the big names.

Unfortunately, it was not meant to be. Things returned to normal around 12 AM Monday morning.

Of course, this could mean that Apple is at least consideringa change tohow this part of its App Store works. But whetherit matters all that much in terms of app discovery is another question. While some percentage of users may turn to the Top Charts to see whats trending, they often now just search the App Store by keyword, or browse through the editorially curated sections. That said, the Top Grossing charts are due for a shake up, and it wouldnt be surprising to see Apple continue to experiment inthis area.

That said, given the brief appearance of the change and quick rollback, its just as likely that this was a bug and nothing more.

Update Some additional data from Sensor Tower:

Six out of yesterdays top 10 Grossing iPhone apps were paid apps. However, it doesnt appear that the paid game that made it into the top 10 benefitted from the additional exposure, in terms of new downloads.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/20/app-store-tests-favoring-paid-apps-over-subscriptions-to-rebalance-its-top-charts/

Amazon Launches Chime

Amazon has taken the wraps off ofits own Skype competitor.Chimeis a new video conferencing and communicationsfrom AWS thats focused on business users.

Beyond VoIP calling and video messaging, Chime includes virtual meetings, allowing users to host or join a remote meeting through the service. Pricingstarts at $2.50 per user per month on the lowest end, with a higher tier plan of $15 per user which includes video and screen-sharing among other features. Thereisa basic option available for free but that is limited to video calls and chat rooms between two users.

Chime is available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android devices.

TechCrunch first reported that Amazon was planning this new service in November, when we wrote that the firm had acquired patents and staff fromSan Francisco-based Biba Systems, a startup behind video messaging apps aimed at business users.

 

The move is not onlyan alternative to communication services like Skype for business or Google Hangouts, but it is also takes AWS into the space of virtual meeting management, where companies like GoToMeeting and Cisco (WebEx) are the best known players.

Its pretty hard to find people who actually like the technology they use for meetings today. Most meeting applications or services are hard to use, deliver bad audio and video, require constant switching between multiple tools to do everything they want, and are way too expensive, Gene Farrell, Vice President of enterprise applications at AWS, said in a statement.

AWS is already a formidable player in cloud services, as TechCrunch enterprise reporter Ron Miller explained this week, but Chime pushes it into the services space to help strengthen its grip on customers ascompetition increases. Microsoft, Google and even new entrants like Alibaba are making big pushes to nab customers from AWS, which remains a key performer for Amazon financially.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/02/13/amazon-chime/

Amazon launches its newest private label, Wickedly Prime

Amazons push into the private-label business continued this month, with the launch of its latest brand, Wickedly Prime. Unlike Amazons more recent entries in the private label space, such asHappy Belly, Mama Bear and Presto!, Wickedly Prime is the first brand since the debut of Amazon Elements two years ago to make its affiliation with Amazon known.

This represents a strategic shift in how Amazon is approaching its private label business. Instead of making it nearly impossible to tell which brands are made by Amazon, Wickedly Prime embraces its Amazon affiliation.

wickedlyprimeNot only does it have Prime in its name, the boxes feature the iconic Amazon smile in the brands logo, and the product packaging even states Distributed by Amazon Fulfillment Services, notesthee-commerce data measurement firm, One Click Retail, in a new report that analyzed the success of the brands launch.

Amazons previousprivate label goods only stated AFS Brands LLC on their packaging, for comparisons sake.

The new Wickedly Prime brand, as the name implies, is exclusive to Amazon Prime members, and targets the foodie crowd with offerings similar to what you might find at a Trader Joes. This includes Amazons own line of snacks, like popcorn, tortilla chips, and soft shell almonds, available in a variety of flavors.

Amazons increased efforts in the private label space werefirst outed inMay by The Wall Street Journal. The article detailed the forthcoming brands offerings, including those from Wickedly Prime

 

Wickedly Prime was not the first of the newer private labels to launch. Its likelythat Amazon wanted to test the business and work out the kinks, before slapping its name on the private label items it sells. With the relative success of its earlier launches, however, the retailer now seems ready to makeits private label goods more known to consumers.

Still, the launch of Wickedly Prime was a bit under the radar as with some of itsother brands, Amazon didnt make a big announcement, it just added the products to its website. One Click Retail says the initial products sold well so far, with the top four SKUs reaching over $500 in sales in the first week. The other SKUs each broke $100. While these are not record-breaking numbers by any means, they are not insignificant for a new product, notesOne Click Retail in its report.

And based on how the other private labels performed, theres potential for solid growth. Happy Belly, for example, sawits nuts and trail mix sales grow from $20,000 to $265,000 thanks to a series of Alexa deals in November, and a Lightning Deal on December 6th. Thats 5,000 percent growth over the prior month. The ability to promote its own products through its deals platformand, now, its network of connected devices in consumers homes, is a lever Amazon can pull at any time.

The retailer seems to know what its doing, too. An earlier report from 1010data found that Amazons private label brands were taking over market share in their respective categories, including speakers (thanks to Amazon Echo), baby wipes (Amazon Elements), and batteries (AmazonBasics).

Now well see if Amazon willhave the same success in the consumer packaged goods space, with its Happy Belly coffees and snacks, Wickedly Good snacks, and Presto! detergents.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2016/12/23/amazon-launches-its-newest-private-label-wickedly-prime/

Amazon makes first drone delivery – BBC News

Image copyright Amazon

Retail giant Amazon has made its first delivery using a drone, in the UK.

The package arrived safely at its destination in Cambridge, 13 minutes after being ordered.

A video showing the process details how the order was completed using an electrically powered drone flying at up to 400ft (122m).

One sceptic questioned how much of a “game changer” the limited trial of the service would be.

As part of the testing for the Amazon Air service, the delivery took place on 7 December, although it was only revealed on 14 December.

 

The Cambridge fulfilment centre is home to the drones, which, once the ordered package is on board, travel along an automated track to the launch area.

The drones then take off and fly completely autonomously, guided by GPS to their destination.

They are capable of carrying items weighing up to 2.7kg (5lbs).

Need for speed

The aim is that all orders made using Amazon Air will be delivered within 30 minutes.

The trial will be expanded to dozens of customers living close to the warehouse in the coming months.

The safety of drones has come under the spotlight in recent months.

There have been reports of near-misses this year between drones and aircraft at London Stansted and Cornwall Airport Newquay.

“Safety is our top priority,” Amazon said on its website. “We are currently permitted to operate during daylight hours when there are low winds and good visibility, but not in rain, snow or icy conditions.”

There are Prime Air development centres in the US, UK, Austria and Israel. The company is also testing its drone vehicles in “multiple international locations”.

Retail shifts

“This is a marketing coup for Amazon,” said Natalie Berg, an analyst at Planet Retail.

“The real significance here is the impact it has on shopper expectations.

“Last year, same-day delivery was considered impressive; now it’s all about 13 minute lead times.

“Over the past few years, we’ve seen a proliferation in delivery options as retailers scramble to cater to changing shopping habits.

“Fulfilment has become a firm battleground in retail and the most successful retailers today are those who can deliver products to shoppers in the quickest, most convenient and economical way.

“Drone delivery is another string to Amazon’s bow, but it’s certainly not an industry game changer.”

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-38320067

Amazon Launchpad Comes to India

Amit Agarwal, Head of Amazon India, announces the India launch of Launchpad at a press event in New Delhi.

Image: manish singh/mashable india

For its latest trick in India, Amazon aims to help startups in the country sell, market, and deliver their products and gain more visibility.

Amazon announced Monday it is bringing its global startup program Launchpad to India. The India Launchpad portal is live with products from over 400 startups, of whom 25 are India-based.

The company has also partnered with Nasscom, Government of Maharashtra, Indian Angels network and several bodies and venture capitalists to help startups on policy and financial sides.

Through Launchpad, first unveiled in 2015 and now available in seven regions, Amazon partners with startups and sells their products on its giant ecommerce platform. Additionally, Amazon also helps startups market and promote their products.

The program will also enable Indian startups to sell their products oversees, said Amit Agarwal, Vice President and Country Manager for Amazon India.

Some products such as Sphero and Eero have previously used Amazon’s Launchpad platform. The Launchpad has helped over 1,200 startups launch products worldwide, with over 4,000 products in storefront, Jason Feldman, Director Global Innovations for Amazon said at the event.

Image: Manish singh/mashable india

“Amazon launchpad is a great step from Amazon for the startup to sell its product online through Amazon,” said Parv Sharma, an analyst at Counterpoint Research.

We spoke with several of the partnered startups. True South, for instance, makes nutritious coffee powder in pouches that is ready for serving after a customer adds hot water.

Seven Sense Technologies makes interesting electronic gadgets such as rings that serve as a fitness tracking device. A representative with the company told us that they previously launched their products in the US and Europe markets through Launchpad program.

Another startup called Lechal makes tiny cuboidal devices that can be added to shoes. These devices also serve as fitness tracking devices and require charging once after 20 days of usage. ‘Blink’ smartwatch from Bangalore-based Witworks, which was first unveiled in late September, has also been launched on Amazon Launchpad platform.

All of these startups told us that they also sell products through other channels, but are heavily relying on Amazon for discoverability and marketing. A representative with Amazon India emphasized that they expect to see plenty of more startups join the platform in the coming days.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/12/05/amazon-india-launchpad/

50 Legit Ways To Ean Money from Home

Image: ladysuzi

Whether youre a stay-at-home parent, college student, or just looking to pay down your debt, we could all use some extra cash.

While we could find a part-time gig, like driving for Uber, or start earning a passive income through affiliate marketing, wouldnt be it nice if you were able to make some fast cash from the friendly confines of your home?

That may sound too good to be true, it is possible if you do so, like these 50 ways that you can make an easy $100 this month from home.

1. Have a yard sale. We all have junk taking up space in our homes. Take a couple of hours to go through your house and look for the items that youre no longer using, such as DVDs, strollers, or kitchen tools and appliances. Then have a yard sale, weather depending of course.

2. Sell your valuables online. Yard sales are an easy way to make some quick cash, but some of your items will definitely fitch higher prices online. Items like antiques or your old Star Wars collection are better suited on sites like eBay. The same is true for larger items like playhouses or bicycles. Place them on Craigslist or a Facebook page so that they buyer can pick them up at your home.

3. Sell your used books. Sites like Bookscouter ensure that you get the best price available for your used books, as opposed to the pennies that you would make by selling them to a bookstore.

4. Sell your gadgets. If you have some old cell phones and tablets lying around then sell them on Gazelle. Just remember that youll make the most money by selling newer devices that are still in-demand.

5. Sell your crafts. Thanks to sites like Etsy you can easily sell your handmade crafts online by creating an online storefront in just a matter of minutes.

6. Drop ship. Dont have anything to sell? Try dropshipping. This is where you simply sell products for a manufacture on eBay or Amazon. The best part? The manufacture handles the shipping and handling for you.

7. Resell unused gift cards. We all have received gift cards from stores that we dont frequent. Instead of letting them go to waste you can sell them online through places like Raise.com. For example, you can sell a $150 Macys gift card and receive around $116. The funds are sent via Direct Deposit, PayPal or check.

8. Become a direct marketer. You’re probably familiar with companies like Tupperware or Avon where you sell products or services directly either online or by hosting a party. But, those are just two examples of direct marketing companies where you can make some extra dough each month.

9. Rent out a spare room. Why let that spare room go unattended? Rent it out on Airbnb to make some quick cash on the side.

10. Rent out your parking space/driveway. If you reside in an area where there are a lot of commuters, or in close proximity to a venue thats hosting a popular event, then consider renting out your parking space or driveway on JustPark or Craigslist.

11. Rent out your vehicle. You dont have to drive for Uber or Lyft to monetize your vehicle. You can it out to your fellow drivers via Turo.

12. Rent out your clothes. Do you have a closet full of clothes that you arent wearing? Rent them on RentNotBuy.

13. Rent out household items. Speaking of RentNotBuy, you can pretty much rent any of your household items out to people. Anything works to rent out, from bicycles, cameras, power tools, and kitchen equipment can all be rented out.

14. Try out Paribus. Paribus is becoming one of my favorite ways to make some fast money. After signing up for free, Paribus scans your emails and looks for receipts from sites like Amazon of Target. It theres been a price drop, then you get a refund.

15. Join Swagbucks. Swagbucks is a popular rewards site where users get paid to browse the internet, complete surveys, watch videos, shop online, or play games. Youll be rewarded by gift cards, and it may take some time to earn $100, but its an incredibly easy way to make money.

16. Join Ebates. With Ebates you earn cash back every time that you shop online. You even get a free $10 gift card just by signing-up.

17. Take online surveys. Getting paid to participate in online surveys won’t make you a millionaire, but sites like Springboard Panel, Harris Poll Online, and Ipsos Panel will pay you up to $95 for surveys that only eat-up 15-2o minutes of your time.

18. Test websites. Companies like User Testing pay people to test the navigation and function of a website. You may have to answer a couple of questions as well, but the entire process only takes about 15 minutes and you have the opportunity to make $30 per hour.

19. Fix search engines. Sites like Leapforce pay you to evaluate search engines. All you have to do is conduct researches on predefined queries. Then you analyze the results and provide feedback.

20. Review stuff. If you have solid writing skills, and love sharing your opinion, then start getting paid to write online reviews on sites like Review Stream and Vindale Research. Youll usually get paid PayPal and payout can range between $25 to $100.

21. Take part in an online focus group. You can also participate in online focus groups, such as ProOpinion. Youll be paid through through a check, gift card, or PayPal deposit.

22. Become a mock jury member. There are attorneys who turn to online mock jurors in order to receive feedback on their cases before they go to trial. Thats when they use sites OnlineVerdict. Cases take-up between 20 minutes to an hour of your time and pay you between $20 to $60.

23. Data entry. Inputting information for companies into a computer system isnt the most stimulating work. On the brightside, data entry jobs dont require any prior experience and its an easy way to make around $10 per hour from the comfort of your home.

24. Customer service representative. As long as you have a landline, internet connection, and decent communication skills, then you can earn between $8-$15 per hour as a customer service rep during your free-time. You can look for customer service rep jobs on Indeed.

25. Tech support. If youre tech savvy then you can make around $13.50 per hour handling technical questions or concerns that customers have regarding a product or service. Checkout Careerbuilder for possible tech support gigs.

26. Bookkeeper. Despite the misconception, you dont have to be a CPA to become a bookkeeper. As long as youre organized, you can make $60 per hour as a virtual bookkeeper.

27. Virtual assistant. Virtual assistants handle a variety of tasks that range from email management, scheduling appointments, making phone calls, or booking hotels. You can make anywhere between $10 to $30 via job boards like Upwork or People Per Hour.

28. Turn your trash into cash. Before you throw out those ink cartridges, wine corks, food packages, moving boxes, or unwanted coupons sell them online. You wont make a fortune, but its one of the easiest ways to pick-up some extra cash. The Penny Hoarder has a great article on how to make money from you trash.

29. Work for Amazon. You cant make a living through Amazon Mechanical Turk, but its a nice way to bring-in some extra cash each month by completing easy tasks like writing product descriptions or identifying performers on music CDs. These tasks usually take under an hour to complete, but youre only paid $6 to $10.

30. Freelance write. If you have a flare for words then you can get paid to write about your hobbies or experience in topics ranging from parenting to marketing. Besides blog posts and articles, there are people who are looking to pen White Papers, website copy, or eBooks. Freelance websites like Upwork, Guru, and Freelancer are great places to find writing gigs. Here is a guide to freelancing that I put together to help.
31. Technical freelancing. Do you have technical skills like programming or graphic design? Then you can use the same freelance websites I just mentioned to land a sweet side gig. Here is a guide to programming that will help you.

32. Tutor/Teach. Whether you’re helping a high school student with math or teaching people to play an instrument or dance, you can make cash. You can tutor or teach people skills either by creating your own online course, or having them come to your home.

33. Play online games. With sites like InboxDollars you can compete for rewards by winning card or puzzle games.

34. At-home daycare. Do you know a lot of people who need a babysitter while theyre at work? Then start your own at-home daycare business. Just remember to secure the proper requirement and insurance, which vary from state-to-state.

35. Pet-sit. If you enjoy the company of dogs and cats then you can find pet-sitting opportunities on sites like Rover.com. The pets stay at your home and you can rake-in around $30 per night.

36. Sewing and alterations. If you have sewing skills that you charge people for alterations, repairs, or even for making handmade bags, bedding, or drapes.

37. Start a referral service. There are a couple of ways that can cash-in on referrals. The first is referring new employees at your current place of employment. The other is referring new businesses and clients to attorneys, doctors, lawyers, local vendors, realtors, or baby-sitters.

38. Travel agent. While there are plenty of websites that can help find the best deals on airline tickets or lodging, not everyone has the time to keep tabs on these deals. After all, prices change daily. Thats why theres still a market for online travel agents.

39. Share your expert advice. Are you knowledgeable in a specific area? Then start cashing in on your expert advice by answering questions on sites like JustAnswer. Even if youre not an expert, you can get a $50 Amazon gift card by just referring an expert.

40. Do paid forum posting. In order to build their authority and trustworthiness, new online website owners will pay writers to create quality posts on on their blog, as well as respond to tweets and moderate online forums. PaidForumPosting.com is a great place to start.

41. Translate documents. If youre bilingual, then you can make between $8 to $18 per hour. Unbabel, for example, pays translators every week through PayPal or Skrill.

42. Consulting. Since you may already be an expert in your field, then start a side-consulting business. Whether if its instructing a business owner to become more eco-friendly or assisting a non-profit with their fundraising efforts, your clients can visit you at your home office or even online through tools like Skype or GoToMeeting.

43. Get healthy. This is probably one of those its too good to be true tactics, but with sites like HealthyWage you can actually make money by sitting a weight loss goal. If you achieve the goal you could get rewarded anywhere from $20 to $500 per month.

44. Watch videos. Both Swagbucks and InboxDollars will pay you to watch movie previews or the latest YouTube videos. Its a pretty simple way to make at least a hundred bucks per month. If you search around you may even be able to make a couple of bucks watching your favorite TV shows on Netflix.

45. Peer-to-peer lend. With the emergence of peer-to-peer lending sites like Prosper and Lending Club you can become an investor and make money from the loan that you issued.

46. Open a new checking or savings account. Believe it or not some banks will give you $250 just for opening up a new checking or savings account. These promotions change frequently, so just do a quick online search for the best bank account bonuses and promotions.

47. Signup up for a rewards credit card. Banks that issue credit cards are also enticing people to sign-up by offering rewards like cash back on every purchase that you make. Im in no advocating that you put yourself in credit card debt, but if you have the means to pay off your balance each month its one of the easiest ways to pick-up some extra cash.

48. Enter contests/competitions. The odds of winning a contest or sweeptake are low, but the more you enter the more likely you are to win a prize. Entering a competition may take a little more effort than most of the other options included in this list, but if you win, the prizes could add-up to thousands of dollars. And, if the prize is a product, you can always flip it.

49. Check for unclaimed funds. The government may actually owe you money from tax refunds or unclaimed back wages. Other unclaimed funds could be from unclaimed deposits from banks or credit unions and savings bonds. USA.gov is an excellent resource to locate these unclaimed funds.

50. Change your spending habits. This may sound more difficult than it is, but if you create a budget you can quickly see some of your unnecessary expenses each month. It could be anything from changing your cable plan to cancelling unused subscriptions or memberships. Any changing of little habits or doing one or two of the suggestions on this list can add-up to an extra couple of hundred dollars in your bank account next month.

 

John Rampton is a serial entrepreneur who now focuses on helping people to build amazing products and services that scale. He is founder of the online payments company Due. He was recently named #2 on Top 50 Online Influencers in the World by Entrepreneur Magazine. Time Magazine recognized John as a motivations speaker that helps people find a “Sense of Meaning” in their lives. He currently advises several companies in the bay area.

Read more: http://mashable.com/2016/12/02/50-legit-ways-to-make-cash-at-home-yes-actually-/

Hollar snags another $30 million for its fast-growing dollar store app

Hollar,a startup offering dollar store-like finds in the form of a mobile app, has raised another $30 million to continue to grow its business.The new Series B round of funding was led byKleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and included participationby Comcast Ventures and Greycroft Partners, as wellexisting investors Lightspeed Venture Partners, Index Ventures, Forerunner Ventures, and Pritzker Group.

As a part of the deal,Eric Feng, General Partner at KPCB, will join Hollars board.

To date, Hollar has raised $47.5 million, following its prior $12 million Series A and $5.5 million seed rounds, which were closed only four months apart.

David Yeom

The company is tackling an interesting space the super low price points where the majority of its merchandise has been around the $2 mark. During the first 10 months of its business, nothing was more than $5, but its now expanding into the $10 space for the holidays, which will allow it to sell more higher-quality toys and gifts.

Hollar, by way of background, got off the ground withThe Honest Companys CEO Brian Lee, who helped to develop the concept along with co-founder and CEO David Yeom, a former VP at Honest. Lee now serves as a board member, but isnt involved day-to-day.

Says Yeom, people dismissed the idea that an online dollar store could be successful.

When we were launching this business, people said theres no way you can make money selling a $2 item!, he laughs. But what the naysayers didnt understand is how dollar store shoppers tend to buy you dont go into the store and buy a single $1 item. You load up your basket with dozens of the stores cheaplypriced products.

Similarly, Hollars shoppers do the same.

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In fact, Yeom says that Hollars shoppers spend more than double the typical basket size at brick-and-mortar dollar stores, as its average basket size is around $30 to their $15. That means Hollar customers are buying around 10 items per order.

This is what led the shop to achieve over $1 million in sales in under six months, and see double-digit growth every month since.

This increased basket size, however, is in part due the fact that Hollar requires a $10 minimum purchase in order to check out, and free shipping only kicks in on orders over $25.

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The company claims to have over 1 million registered users across web and mobile, but according to recent stats from app intelligence firm Sensor Tower, the iOS app in the U.S. has seen just192,000 downloads to date. That said, the app is also available on Android, in addition to its online store.

However, whats interesting is that Hollar claims half its customers are arriving via non-paid channels. This figure indicating high word-of-mouth organic growth seems high. But anecdotally, Ive seen it myself. When Ive told friends to downloadHollar, the first thing they do is load up their basket with some $20+ worth of goods.

 

The Hollar store itself has been growing, along with its sales, the majority of which come frommobile.

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Today, there are now over 10,000 live SKUs on its site and, by next month, around300 of those will be Hollars own private label products. These include a number of home and kitchen items, electronics and accessories, and even, soon, a Hollar-branded VR viewer that works with your smartphone.

While Yeom wont speak to the margins on Hollars private label items, he says theyre substantially higher than those from its vendors.

But there is one waywhere Hollar isnt mirroring its retail dollar store rivals: grocery items. Thats an area were not investing too much in we want to stay true to the light and fun aspect, says Yeom.

Private labels and careful product consideration arentthe only ways Hollar is planning to growits business. The other is the launch of a seller marketplace in the first quarter of 2017. Like Amazon and eBay, this will allow for direct sales from sellers to Hollars customers.

If you truly want to scale, I think this is really the right approach, says Yeom. With any e-commerce business, inventory is a slippery slope. You have to be very mindfulof it. This is definitely one way we can offer a greater depth and breadth of products.

He notes that Hollars sellers will be vetted with a white glove approach, to keep quality high.

Were going to be very meticulous, very judicious about who sellswe want to make sure the experience is first and foremost, Yeom explains. A seller rating and review system will arrive next year as well, to allow for consumer feedback.

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Hollar, currently a team of over 150, also plans to increase its headcount as it moves itswarehouse and corporate office from their prior separate locations into, ironically, the more than 180,000 square-foot former 99 Cents Only Stores facility.It also plans to explore an East Coast-based warehouse

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2016/11/03/hollar-snags-another-30-million-for-its-fast-growing-dollar-store-app/