(Photo : Getty Images/Stephen Brashear)
In recent years, brick-and-mortar stores have been competing with online shopping sites for customers’ loyalty, and some sites, such as Amazon, are winning the consumer wars. Recently, it was reported that some retailers are shuttering their doors in locations all over the world, but now, Amazon appears to be taking the battle to the streets as the online vendor is planning to open furniture and appliance stores.
According to the New York Times, sources said that Amazon is planning to explore the idea of creating stores to sell furniture and appliances. One of the several people with knowledge of the discussions within the company spoke with the media outlet on condition of anonymity because the plans were confidential.
The planned furniture and appliance stores are additions to the company’s physical stores, which include bookstores in Seattle, San Diego, and Portland, with five more stores opening in Chicago, New York City, Massachusetts, and New Jersey in the coming months, according to USA Today. The online retailer also unveiled a cashier-less grocery store called Amazon Go in Seattle last December.
It was reported that the stores will serve as showrooms where people could view furniture and appliances in person, and orders will be delivered to customers’ homes.
Apparently, the new stores will be equipped with high-tech touches which will set them apart from Home Depot and Walmart. The source revealed that Amazon has considered using forms of augmented or virtual reality to allow people to see how couches, dining sets, stoves, and refrigerators will look in their homes.
The company is also said to be planning an electronics store, and Amazon will be taking cues from Apple’s retail shops. It was said that the stores will carry Amazon devices such as the Echo smart home speaker and Prime video streaming service. It’s also likely that the store will carry Amazon Fire phones and the company’s best-selling Kindle e-readers.
Amazon has yet to confirm the reports. However, the media outlet points out that electronic commerce company may not push through with the plans for the said physical stores, as ideas could be easily vetoed by executives after further study.
For more, check out Jobs & Hire’s report on Bebe, which is said to be closing down its physical stores to focus on online sales.