What is Amazon Books?
Amazon Books is a chain of stores owned by the technology giant Amazon. The first store opened in Seattle at the end of 2015, but recently, Amazon opened another in Columbus Circle in New York City.
It lies on the 3rd floor of Columbus Circle’s set of shops and is about 4,000 square feet. As you make your way in, you’ll notice about a fourth of the store is dedicated to Amazon’s technology products, including the Amazon Echo, Amazon Tap, Echo Dot, and the brand-new Echo Show.
This is the first time Amazon has been able to get their technology products in front of real people in their own branded space. There are also various Kindles and Amazon fire tablets in this section.
However, this “tech area” isn’t the only place where Amazon has technology. Throughout the entire store, Amazon uses data to help you decide if something might be worth buying. This starts with the prices.
Nothing in the store has a price tag. By removing the price from the main display, customers might be more tempted to pick up a bunch of things. With their prime membership usually giving them a deal, they feel good about their purchase, even though they might not have purchased books online in the first place. To find the price of an item, a customer can use their Amazon App or scan their item under one of these special wall-mounted scanners. Amazon Prime members usually get a steep discount (30% or more) on the list price.
Amazon also uses the data they have collected from their online empire to inform customers of ratings, reviews, and other important information. Each section of their store nearly matches with a type of search you could make on their website.
Each book is also accompanied with either a customer review or a data fact, such as “97% of reviewers rated this item 5 stars.”
Each card also states when it was last updated, so you have an idea of how recent the information is.
In the back of the store, Amazon provides in-store recommendations based on popular books you have probably read before.
Amazon truly uses the data they have collected in every possible way. Their shopping bags even include “Popular Highlighted Kindle Quotes!”
This store could be seen as Amazon’s brick and mortar bookstore experiment, but rather, it’s testing a new way of selling merchandise. With the books are facing out, presence of reviews and data right next to the merchandise, and lack of price tags, it will be interesting to see if anyone else adopts a similar model in their stores.