🚗 🚙 Turn your trusty old car into trustworthy journalism Learn more

Online sales of Girl Scout cookies skyrocket in the pandemic

Apr 25, 2022
What might be lost or gained as Scouts migrate to web sales, instead of going from door to door?
Nine-year-old Gianna Salcedo canvasses her neighborhood in Sacramento, California, to sell Girl Scout cookies the old-fashioned way — by knocking on doors.
Ana Tintocalis

Retailers grapple with returns as online sales surge

Dec 29, 2021
Optoro, which manages returns for Target and Ikea, says consumers will send back $120 billion worth of goods this season.
Consumers will return $120 billion worth of products between Thanksgiving and the end of January, according to Optoro. Above, a UPS package handler loads a truck.
Jon Cherry via Getty Images

How one bookseller arrived at its next chapter

Nov 3, 2021
The co-owners of “A Good Used Book” in Los Angeles, California, are back in their retail space and looking ahead to the future.
This summer, Jenny Yang and Chris Capizzi, co-owners of A Good Used Book, began selling books in-person again after pivoting to online sales during pandemic lockdown.
TTStock via Getty Images

A new program aims to help small businesses recover

David Brancaccio speaks with Efrem Fesaha and Jasmine Star about the new BackTo.Biz program funded by Howard Schultz.
Small businesses have been required to pivot during the pandemic in order to survive. The BackTo.Biz program helps small business owners do just that.
LeoPatrizi via Getty Images

Online alcohol sales rise during the pandemic

Feb 12, 2021
What's on tap for American drinkers? Could be free delivery, one consultant says.
"Cocktails-to-go has been a great phenomenon," says Chris Swonger, CEO of the Distilled Spirits Council.
Dibyangshu Sarkar/AFP via Getty Images

As e-commerce booms, U.S. ports face traffic jams

Nov 23, 2020
A federal commission is investigating.
Containers are offloaded from a ship at the Port of Los Angeles, the nation's busiest.
Mario Tama/Getty Images

Retailers get creative to handle expected crush of online sales

Nov 13, 2020
Walmart is converting 42 warehouses that normally ship products to its stores so they can also fulfill online orders.
An employee prepares boxes for shipment at a warehouse in Draper, Utah. Retailers are preparing their warehouses for a surge in online orders.
George Frey/Getty Images

For public good, not for profit.

Amazon is trimming some profit off high-end salons

Sep 28, 2017
Hair products once sold only in salons are now offered online. Salons are relying on customer relationships to sell the merchandise.
Companies used to sell their high-end hair care products only in salons and stores. But they found their products were being sold online, whether they wanted them to be or not.  
Eric Feferberg/AFP/Getty Images

Inside the booming collectible market for sneakers

Dec 15, 2016
It's a red hot market, with investors and collectors alike.




Limited edition sneakers are popular but they also have a troubled past. A close up of artist Gary Simmons's 1193 piece Lineup at the Whitney Museum of art where sneakers, dazzlingly presented in metallic gold, are placed against a police line up chart. 






 
Sally Herships/Marketplace

UPS is betting big on software this holiday season

Dec 8, 2016
The company says technology will help it deliver 700 million packages
Nafis Muhammad is a driver for UPS in New Jersey. A few months ago, his delivery center started using a software program that dictates the order that packages must be delivered in, with locations. That makes the job a whole lot easier.
Marielle Segarra/Marketplace