Amazon Opens First Bookstore

by Katie Lee

Seattle — Online retail giant Amazon opened its first brick-and-mortar bookstore, called Amazon Books, on November 3, 2015 at University Village in north Seattle. The store opens 20 years after Amazon began selling books — severely discounted compared to traditional retailers — over the Internet.

The 5,500-square-store, which offers as many as 6,000 titles and an additional 2,000 square feet of storage, is a physical extension of the company website, combining the benefits of online pricing with traditional book shopping, the company told the Associated Press in a statement.

Inside the store, shoppers will find book displays that contain cards with ratings and reviews. Shoppers can buy the book now, or save the review card and purchase the book online later. The store will not be a location to pick up Amazon orders. While the store will showcase Amazon’s Kindle e-readers, Fire tablets and Fire TV streaming-media devices, it will focus first on being a bookstore. Another unique display strategy? All books will face outward, displaying their entire covers rather than only the spines showing.

It is unknown whether Seattle-based Amazon will (a) make a profit selling books at online prices or (b) open more retail locations in the future. “We’re completely focused on this bookstore,” Jennifer Cast, Amazon Books’ vice president, told the The Seattle Times. “We hope this is not our only one. But we’ll see.”


SOURCE: The Associated Press, The Seattle Times


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