Online retailer eBay opens a Pop-up store in London – A sneak peak video

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eTailers Change the Rules of Christmas Retail
Online etailer eBay is set to launch a pop-up store in London. The eBay Christmas Boutique is a new way to do your Christmas shopping. There are none of the usual checkouts, bags and queues – the store uses smart p[hone QR technology to link a High Street retail experience seamlessly with online processes.

In a wonderful gesture of retail brand design, the eBay Christmas Boutique will stock more than 350 items, and with payment by smart phone or tablet only, just use your handheld electronic device to scan the QR codes of the items you want to buy and then let them pop up in your online eBay basket.

In a clever piece of co-branding, HTC is kindly lending out tablets in-store to help you browse the gifts, set up an eBay account and make purchases. if you don’t happen to own a smart phone. The boutique is divided into three sections: gifts for her, gifts for him, and gifts for the kids. Unlike the online eBay experience, there will be no bidding wars – everything in the store is brand-new and sold at a fixed price. The store features the visual language of the eBay brand identity and includes eBay’s top 200 items available. Customers can use the Ebay App on their mobile phones to scan a barcode on an item’s price tag and have them delivered to their homes within a slick three days. The store will be open for just five days and will close on Monday the 5th of December. The first week in December has traditionally been the busiest shopping week in the lead up to Christmas and the opening is designed to coincide with this.

This weekend looms as ebays busiest Christmas shopping period, when they expect more than 5.8 million shoppers to visit the site. At the peak of the Christmas frenzy, eBay expect to be selling two items each and every second.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-NgK5p8fz0
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There may be nothing new about the pop-up retail concept. But what I see here is another example of online retailers out-innovating traditional bricks and mortar retailers. Whether-or-not businesses borne from the digital space simply have a greater degree of innovation coded into their DNA, they continue to explore fresh, new ways to connect with their audiences. And in this case it’s a matter of taking the battle for business right to the doorsteps of their traditional rivals.
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The question for traditional retailers this Christmas is; ‘What are you doing differently to connect and engage with your customers this Christmas to what you have done in years gone-by?’
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