4. A pop-up in London
Black Friday, a holiday linked to Thanksgiving, isn't just for acquisitive Americans anymore. For a third-straight year, U.K. retailers celebrated it wildly, and Amazon dived into the spirit, deploying a five-room, 3,000-square-foot pop-up shop in London's Soho square, Axios' Chris Matthews reports.
Why it matters: Retail startups, e-commerce outlets, and brands are increasingly looking to pop-up stores as a means for driving sales and creating brand awareness. PopUp Republic, a services provider for the pop-up industry, estimates that broadly measured, these stores generate $50 billion in sales in the U.S. annually.
Amazon has opened dozens of smaller pop-ups across America this year, aimed at showcasing its hardware products, like the Kindle Fire. But this was the first in Europe, and, according to Alvaro Morilla, an analyst with Kantar Retail, it hints at a new model for how e-commerce companies will test products, learn about consumer tastes, and burnish their brands.
The London pop-up is not about capturing traditional retail sales at all.
- Amazon furnished the entire townhouse to look like a family home, with Amazon products strategically placed in rooms where they would be used.
- "With no checkout point at the store, Amazon was clearly trying to make this about having fun," says Morilla, who argues that Amazon's goal is not to generate in-store sales, but to "create retail theater and hospitality," and encourage shoppers to buy via its increasingly popular smartphone app.
- "All the staff we spoke to were helpful, and more interested in creating an experience and [a] guided shop over actually 'selling,'" says Morilla.
Read the rest of Chris' post.