WSJ making e-commerce push

WSJ Select

Jason Del Rey of Advertising Age writes about how The Wall Street Journal this week opened a shoppable holiday gift guide in the WSJ Select section of its site, where it plans to center future commerce initiatives from the paper.

Del Rey writes, “The Journal already runs some e-commerce programs, such as a mail-order wine business and a partnership with Gilt City to sell higher-end daily deal-type offerings. In recent years, it also killed off its branded merchandise business, which sold items such as mugs that carried the Wall Street Journal brand name. But now the Journal is trying its hand at merchandising goods from outside retail brands that it feels will be attractive to the Wall Street Journal reader.

“Curating lists of holiday gifts has been a longtime go-to for magazine and newspaper publishers, but their shopping guides still often send readers off the media property to a retailer’s site to buy. A GQ 2012 Gift Guide, for example, links out to sites from companies such as Phaidon, Starbucks and Walmart. The same goes for a travel-themed gift guide at The New York Times.

“But the Journal’s version allows readers to purchase the gifts — which range from a $2,900 Tag Heuer watch to a $19.95 book about home-brewing beer — directly from WSJ Select. Customers can add products from participating retailers, which include Nordstrom, Best Buy and Italian e-tailer Yoox, to a single shopping cart and pay for them all with one payment.

“‘We’re trying to make it as seamless as possible,’ Ms. Bowen said. ‘The level of friction with completing a transaction online is still really high.’”

Read more here.