Amazon to open first retail store in Manhattan →

October 10, 2014 |

Greg Bensinger And Keiko Morris, Market Watch:

The site, set to open in time for the holiday-shopping season on Manhattan’s busy 34th Street, would mark an experiment by Amazon to connect with customers in the physical world. Amazon has built its business on competitive pricing and fast shipping. Until now, though, it couldn’t compete with the immediacy of a traditional store.

Surprising move by Amazon. It will be a good way to get people to see Amazon’s products in a premium location, without being shadowed by other competing products. The Fire phone sure looks like it could use the help.

Beyond that, though, I’m not entirely sure how a retail store fits into Amazon’s bigger picture.

Perhaps they’ll use this brick-and-mortar location as a sort of gateway into their more established online business model. A high-end retail store would be a nice way to get even more consumers to trust Amazon: “See? We’re right here. You can buy online and if it doesn’t work out, you can come by and yell at us.”