Amazon to get its first physical store soon


MUMBAI: Amazon.com, the online giant may soon open its first physical store, at a prime site in Midtown Manhattan, according to The Wall Street Journal.

It would be the first brick-and-mortar outlet in its 20-year history and attempt by Amazon to connect with customers in the physical world.

Expected to open in time for the holiday shopping season, the store may also display Amazon's proprietary products, such as its Kindle line of e-readers and tablets, Fire smartphones and video-streaming boxes. If the store takes off, Amazon may also expand to other cities, the Journal reported.

The leading e-commerce platform plans to open its first full-fledged store across from the Empire State Building, at 7 West 34th Street, the report added. The site will double as a mini-warehouse to support same-day delivery, returns and order pickups within New York.

A store would mark a significant move for an online retailer that has capitalised on its Internet business model and the cost-savings of doing away with a vast physical network.

In recent years however, the company’s CEO Jeff Bezos has led a number of initiatives that have mandated a physical presence in cities. The company has also on occasion set up pop-up stores in malls, though those have been rare.

Amazon also has set up large metal lockers in convenience stores and parking garages around the country to accommodate deliveries and returns. The lockers don’t offer same-day delivery, however. The lockers have been a popular option, and Amazon has expanded them to a number of cities, including overseas, after initially just offering them in Seattle.

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