Amazon upping the omnichannel game


March 7, 2019 | By RetailME Bureau

Global retailer Amazon has, reportedly, decided to close down its electronics focused pop-up stores, while opening more grocery, convenience, book and gift stores.

Amazon plans to shutter around 87 pop-ups in the US – mostly located within shopping malls, Whole Foods Market and Kohl’s stores – by end of April. These pop-ups mainly concentrate on electronics products and services by Amazon, such as Echo smart speakers Kindle e-readers, Fire tablets as well as Amazon Prime services.

The decision comes at a time when Amazon is otherwise ramping up its physical presence – with plans to set up mostly large-sized stores across a few formats.

The retailer will set up Whole Foods stores, a healthy grocery concept that Amazon acquired in 2017. The stores would, reportedly, come up under a new brand, different from Whole Foods.

On the other hand, Amazon plans to expand the number of its bookstores, Amazon Books and Amazon 4-Star – a gift shop-like concept. Through Amazon 4-Star, the retailer makes way for customers to touch-and-feel products that they have browsed online, liked and gave a customer rating of four stars or more.

These moves come as part of Amazon’s effort to “provide a more comprehensive customer experience and broader selection.”

In addition, the retailer also operates and plans to increase the footprint of Amazon Go – its cashier less convenience store concept – and rolled out the same concept in a smaller format. In the wake of increased competition from retailers, across the world, using both physical and digital channels seamless, Amazon continues to evolve in its quest for a perfect omnichannel retailing strategy.

Referred sources: CNBC, Reuters, The Wall Street Journal

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