With news out that last month was the worst July on record for year-on-year growth in total retail sales and that one in 10 high street shops are empty, it’s no surprise to see Amazon slowly starting to take advantage. Their latest endeavour is the Clicks and Mortar pop-up shops in cities across the UK with the latest opening this past weekend in Waverley Mall, Edinburgh.
The Clicks and Mortar pop-up shops will provide customers with the opportunity to discover and buy directly from over 100 small businesses – everything from homeware and health and beauty products to food and drink and electronics. The up-and-coming brands have all built successful online businesses and now want to explore physical retail for the first time.
The year-long pilot programme aims to explore a new model to help online businesses experience the high street, as well as highlighting the benefits of combining in-store and online retail. An independent research consultant has been commissioned to produce a detailed analysis of the impact of the pilot, and will submit its findings to the Government following the call for new ideas to inform the Future High Streets strategy.
“Amazon has allowed us to increase our sales eight fold and expand our customer base across the UK and Europe. Clicks and Mortar is a great opportunity to experiment with physical retail and we see this as our next natural step – in fact we strongly believe that independent, online retailers could play a major role in the revival of our town centres and High Streets.”
– Karen Riddick, founder, Second Nature Online Dumfries via Edinburgh News
“Small businesses are one of our most important customer groups, and we’re thrilled to work with Enterprise Nation to design a comprehensive package to help entrepreneurs across the UK grow their businesses, both in-store and online. From giving up-and-coming online British brands the chance to experience physical retail, to funding the training of full-time apprenticeships and helping to increase SME exports, Amazon is committed to supporting the growth of small businesses – helping them boost the economy and create jobs across the UK.”
– Doug Gurr, UK Country Manager, Amazon
With the changing nature of our high streets, the Association of Convenience Stores found that what consumers most want are more specialist food shops and banks in their local area. With this is mind it’s no surprise that Amazon’s other foray onto the high street is their Whole Foods acquisition.