Online comes off.



Are online retailers realizing the reverse of what their off-line counterparts did years ago? Namely that one channel is not enough to sell things these days? It sure looks like it with eBay’s announcement that they’ll be debuting a pop up store in New York for the holidays.

It makes sense. Brick-and-mortar stores learned a long time ago that they needed an online presence to increase sales. It stands to reason that the reverse is also true.

It also helps break eBay out of the “Online garage sale” perception, as they’ll be showcasing Norma Kamali’s exclusive fashions for eBay, L.A.M.B shoes, handbags from Michael Kors and Dooney & Burke, Anthropologie dresses and cosmetics from M.A.C., Smashbox and other brands.

I’ll be interested to see how this works. My guess is the novelty of the store will help it do brisk sales even in a down economy. We’ll have to see whether or not it leads to further eBay purchases and more customer loyalty down the road – and if it’s a success, how many other online retailers follow suit.


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