Amazon to roll out pop-ups nationwide
Amazon has quietly been opening pop-ups in malls across the country selling Echo and its other electronic devices and plans to have up to 100 open by 2017, according to Business Insider.
The company has likewise quietly launched a microsite supporting the pop-up initiative and showing that Amazon already has 22 locations.
The microsite promises the pop-ups will let shoppers try the full range of Amazon devices — including Echo, Fire TV, Fire Tablets, Dash Button and Kindle — with on-hand experts available. The pop-ups will further enable mall visitors to choose from an array of accessories, “from kid-proof covers to unlimited streaming of movies and music with Prime.”
A source told Business Insider that the number of pop-ups is expected to exceed 30 this year, up from six last year, and could reach as many as 100 by next year. Job listings are showing up in some cities with one ad indicating the pop-ups “have emerged from the test phase with a goal to expand and grow.”
Beyond the initial success of test pop-ups, the expansion appears designed to build on Echo’s breakout success and counters moves in 2012 by Target and Walmart to stop selling Amazon devices. Target plans to bring Amazon products back this year.
The source told Business Insider that the pop-ups could potentially evolve in the future into more traditional tech-focused stores, similar to those run by Apple.
The pop-ups are a separate initiative from Amazon Books, which have only a small area devoted to electronic devices. Amazon Books, which has two stores open, is being run by its retail team, while the pop-ups are operated by its device team.
Fortune has reported that Amazon is considering opening hundreds of brick-and-mortar bookstores across the country.
At Amazon’s annual meeting in May, CEO Jeff Bezos said the company was “definitely going to open additional stores,” although the number was uncertain. He stated, “In these early days it’s all about learning, rather than trying to earn a lot of revenue.”
- Amazon Pop-Up store – Amazon
- Amazon is doubling down on retail stores with plans to have up to 100 pop-up stores in US shopping malls – Business Insider
- Amazon is expanding its retail operation to 100 pop-up stores around the US – The Verge
- Amazon plans to open more retail stores – The Verge
- Here’s How Many Pop-Up Stores Amazon Plans to Open – Fortune
- Amazon Books – Amazon
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Are pop-ups a smart way for Amazon to raise awareness and drive trial for Echo and its other electronic devices? What does this initiative say about Amazon’s ambition to open physical stores?