Amazon Wages War On Brick-And-Mortar Stores
Via All Things D:
Two days ago Brandon Tietz brought us a story on the practice of showrooming, which is the act of going into brick-and-mortar stores and sampling products before buying them on Amazon.
Many people (myself included) feel this is bad form, especially when it comes to indie bookstores.
Now it looks like Amazon wants to actively encourage the practice. On Dec. 10, they're asking shoppers to use their proprietary bar-code-scanning app to help them gather intelligence on in-store pricing.
Amazon’s Price Check app is available for iPhone and Android, and if you use it to send data over to Amazon during the promotion, you get 5 percent, or up to $5 off, on three items.
Said Sam Hall, director of Amazon Mobile:
We scour online and in-store advertisements from other retailers, every day, year-round. Now, we are enabling customers to use the Price Check app to share in-store prices while they search for the best deals.
I'm about to go off on a rant, so if you're not into that kind of thing, feel free to go read about less controversial subjects.
For my day job, I work for a digital publishing imprint that's housed in a very groovy independent bookstore. Amazon's prices and convenience make it tough for any bookstore to operate, and it's a slap in the face when people come in to take photos of books so they can buy them on Amazon.
I'm not arguing against a free market economy, but this goes beyond price-cutting: This is an act of war by Amazon against physical retailers, and if this practice of offering scanning discounts becomes more prevalent, it's going to be a big blow against indie bookstores.
Not cool, Amazon.
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