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Amazon's Physical Bookstore, Improved by Online Data, Opens Tuesday

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By    |   Tuesday, 03 Nov 2015 01:53 PM

Amazon opened a physical bookstore on Tuesday after 20 years of selling books online.

"There is some irony in Amazon’s opening a physical store," wrote The Seattle Times

"For years, it could undercut physical retailers on price because it didn’t have brick-and-mortar locations. But those stores offered something Amazon couldn’t: The instant gratification of owning an item the second it was purchased, as well as the personal touch of a knowledgeable sales clerk."

Amazon, a tech company through and through, will not be content to merely sell books from its new Seattle location; it will also use knowledge about consumers' online shopping habits to help predict and promote items they're likely to buy in the store, NBC News reported.

Another advantage the company will have is knowing the rate of sales for new titles, meaning it will know better than competitors how much inventory it can expect to move. In many cases, it can also create retail displays based on Amazon data like "Most Wished-For Cookbooks," which is based on how many people have added particular cookbooks to a Wish List on their profile.

"It’s data with heart," said Jennifer Cast, vice president of Amazon Books. "We’re taking the data we have and we’re creating physical places with it."

For the grand opening, Amazon has featured the favorite books of founder Jeff Bezos in its staff favorites section.

Titles include "The Gift of Fear" by Gavin de Becker, "The Five Love Languages" by Gary Chapman, and "Traps" by his wife, MacKenzie Bezos.

"A page-turner written by an award-winning novelist, who also happens to be my wife," Bezos wrote.

The new bookstore is located in the University Village open-air shopping mall, and stocks roughly 5,000 to 6,000 titles.

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Amazon opened a physical bookstore on Tuesday after 20 years of selling books online.
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2015-53-03
Tuesday, 03 Nov 2015 01:53 PM
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