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Amazon.com Inc. appears to be following the lead of some of its smallest competitors in its latest strategic move. Amazon’s apparent plan to build a physical presence in shopping malls and urban centers is following the playbook of internet-first retailers that are reaching shoppers through storefronts and kiosks, the WSJ reported today. The strategy by eyeglasses seller Warby Parker, jewelry outlet Blue Nile Inc. and clothing boutique Bonobos Inc. represent variations on the methods that have troubled traditional retailers and saddled them with higher inventory costs and margin-cutting logistics expenses.
The system works partly on trust and partly because of an incredibly intrusive big data ... (read more)