What’s old is new again. Amazon brings that adage to life as it opens … gulp, a bookstore? That’s right, the online giant blurs the lines between e-commerce and retail once again by opening its first-ever physical bookstore.
Amazon Books, Fortune says, is located in the trendy University Village area in the company’s hometown of Seattle. The store is filled with titles that have strong online reviews, and shoppers can fiddle with hands-on displays of Amazon devices: Kindle, Echo, Fire TV and Fire Tablets, with staff nearby to answer questions and demo the gadgets.
The store’s footprint is small, says NPR, at only 5,500 square feet — roughly a fifth the size of an average Barnes & Noble store.
Last year, Amazon opened its first physical location at Purdue University in Indiana, where, according to CNN Money, “Students can order everything from “textbooks, laptops, or mac and cheese.”
Take a look at this Amazon-produced video touting its first brick-and-mortar store.
Amazon isn’t the only online retailer to go from clicks to bricks. Development magazine profiled stores that are “beginning to open and reap the benefits of real brick-and-mortar locations: additional purchase points, testing labs for new and existing products, same-day pick-up, shipping centers, return locations, help desks and more.”
Kathryn Hamilton is Vice President for Marketing and Communications at NAIOP Corporate.