Gone before you know it!
We have learnt that with the upcoming eCommerce players, the traditional brick-and-mortar retail shops tend to disappear, simply because their competition offers the same products online. In a reaction to this, many brick-and-mortar competitors are starting to show up online. Take as an example Barnes & Noble, who got pushed out of the market by the eCommerce giant Amazon. After Barnes & Noble introduced their own online platform, they slowly came back into the market again.
eCommerce companies gain their efficiencies and advantages from being technology-centric. This has turned out to be a competitive disadvantage lately, as they lack physical presence in the brick-and-mortar landscape. A recent phenomenon are the so called pop-up stores. These are brick-and-mortar shops that pop up for a short time, to either create a buzz or one-time events with VIP exposure to hot, new inventory. After a short while, usually a month, the stores are gone again and the merchandise sold can no longer be obtained.
The reason these pop-up shops are so popular, is because they are exclusive. They offer a once in a lifetime opportunity to obtain certain products. These shops have been showing up in the United States and Italy and were a great success. They are often used for clothing and fashion shows. Another example would be the London Fashion Bus, one of the very few and early movers. They went on a tour through London with an Urban Catwalk.
A last reason these companies achieve success is the social interaction they bring. Although the option of making your purchases online has its perks, many people like to visit the physical stores. Furthermore, online shopping and visiting a physical store of an eCommerce company one is loyal to, seem to have a positive influence on one another.
What do you think? Would this be a commonality in the future? Would you be interested in attending such exclusive events? Or will this phenomenon not hold its ground and be outmaneuvered when the eCommerce channels become even more efficient, e.g. delivery on the same day?