Amazon opens a clothing store. Like, a real
It is a physical clothing store. Like, you know, a real brick-and-mortar space where you go to try stuff, buy it, and take it home. An IRL store. Google if you’ve never been there.
“Customers like to mix and match online and in-store purchases. And it’s no different in fashion,” Simoina Vasen, chief executive of Amazon Style, said in an interview. “There are so many great brands and great designers, but discovering them is not always easy.”
There are a few new things to Amazon Style and ways the company hopes to make shopping faster and more personalized for customers. However, many of the ideas that Amazon uses in the store aren’t new to the retail industry.
Most garments will be kept in the back of the store and only one sample of each item will be displayed on the sales floor. To buy it, customers will scan a QR code using an Amazon mobile shopping app, then collect it at the cash-out counter. If they want to try it on first, they can have it sent to a fitting room, which has touch screens where customers can request different sizes or colors. As customers browse the store and scan items, Amazon’s algorithms will recommend other items they might be interested in buying.
Other advantages of a physical store: Customers can also drop off their Amazon returns in store, or order online and pick them up on site.
Amazon has been working on this apparel initiative for years, said Vasen, who helped build Amazon’s physical presence in stores and also ran Amazon’s Prime Now grocery delivery service. She didn’t say when the first Amazon Style store will open this year or how many Amazon plans to add in the future.
Amazon Style will be the company’s latest attempt to break into brick-and-mortar retail, an area it has struggled to break into.
Amazon hasn’t had the same level of success with physical stores as it has online. Amazon physical store sales fell 0.18% in 2019 from a year earlier to $17.2 billion and 5.6% in 2020 as more shoppers ordered online during the pandemic.
In its latest results for the nine months ending September 30, Amazon’s sales in physical stores were up 1.5% from the same period a year earlier.