Amazon.com Inc. on Tuesday will make its initial foray into offline sales in Europe with the opening of a U.K. pop-up shop in London.
The store represents the first time the retail giant, which owns Whole Foods Market and operates AmazonGo and AmazonBooks stores, will leverage a physical presence to highlight its growing interest in fashion.
The shop, which will be open Tuesday through Saturday, will showcase different men’s and women’s fashion items every other day, as well as host assorted events. For example, on Tuesday and Wednesday, the store will feature fall and winter fashion items, along with a DJ performance by Charlotte de Carle on Tuesday and a panel discussion hosted by Jessica Diner, Vogue’s beauty and lifestyle director, on Wednesday.
While the items in the store will change every other day, consumers can browse Amazon Fire tablets in the store to see the full range of items sold in the store from Tuesday through Saturday. The store associates will be trained to help consumers with sizing or fit queries and to offer their styling expertise.
Consumers will be able to buy items in the store or via Amazon’s mobile app. The shopper can either take the item home with her or have it sent to her home, work or an Amazon locker collection address.
“With the ongoing schedule of activities taking place throughout the week, we hope our pop-up shop will be an exciting and inspiring way to shop for fashion,” says Susan Saideman, Amazon Fashion vice president for Europe.
The more than 3,000-square-foot store features a contemporary look, complete with a neon Amazon “smile” seat with neon signage, floor-to-ceiling windows at street level and wooden floors. Online shoppers can also browse the selection at amazon.co.uk/amazonfashionhosts.
The move to open up a fashion-focused pop-up shop comes as the retail giant is building out its already sizable apparel business; Amazon’s gross merchandise volume in apparel last year was $18.5 billion, according to Wells Fargo analyst Ike Boruchow. That volume exceeds the online sales of every North American online retailer save Apple Inc. and Walmart Inc., according to Internet Retailer’s Top500Guide.com.
And it comes at a time when apparel sales are shifting online. Online apparel sales accounted for 27.4% of overall U.S. apparel sales in 2017, according to Internet Retailer estimates. That’s up from 23.5% in 2016 and 20.7% in 2015.
Not only do consumers buy more clothing online than ever before, most say they like buying clothing online. According to a February 2018 survey of 2,535 U.S. consumers by PYMNTS.com, 43.2% of respondents said they prefer to shop and buy in stores, while 26.9% prefer to shop and buy only online and 29.9% said they prefer online and in-store.
Amazon is No. 1 in the Internet Retailer 2018 Top 1000.Favorite