The Beauty of Bricks?

Amazon’s plans to start a physical retail store in Seattle made me wonder which other ecommerce pureplayers followed or are following this example and which might be the underlying reaons. And, warning: This time, your cooperation is needed!

Usually, it’s the other way around: Retailers present and sell their stuff in brick-and-mortar stores, and – because someone invented this weird thing called internet –  are more or less convinced that in addition to their traditional business, an online strategy might not be the worst of ideas. (“Everybody is talking about multi-channel these days, why don’t we?”) In the recent past, however, companies who started their business entirely as an online company, venture out into the real world and open physical retail stores. Motivations for those moves could be supporting their own brands by providing an enjoyable shopping experience, getting in touch with more customers thus increasing turn-over or simply because they can see their target audience “live”.

I’ve done a bit of research to find out who else has such a strategy:

  1. eBay Christmas Boutique – Around last year’s Xmas time, eBay started a local store in London which displayed interesting products, users could buy the desired products by using their smartphones and the eBay mobile app.
  2. notebooksbilliger.de – A little while ago, this Germany-based retailer of notebooks and electronics recently opened a store in Munich. As Ulrich Kaleta, head of marketing at notebooksbilliger told the audience in a session at the recent Onlinehandel 2012, the local store matches the prices of the online shop and that the local store is as separate profit center that has to support itself. And it does, it seems.
  3. Cdiscount.com – This French retailer has opened his first pilot store in Paris in late 2011.

There’s bound to be much more, and this is where you come in. If you could point out other examples and the reasons behind those moves, that would be awesome. Please fire away in the comments!

(Image by  TheArtGuy)

3 Responses to The Beauty of Bricks?

  1. Pingback: Handelskraft – Das E-Commerce und Social-Commerce-Blog - Das Sterben der Pure Player – Der Trend zu Multiline-Händlern

  2. Hey Roman. Greetings from Seattle! While they aren’t web-only, it seems like the most obvious models for Amazon to follow would be Apple and Microsoft http://www.contentping.com/news-and-blogs/amazon-considering-brick-and-mortar-strategy/

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