Amazon has reported that sales were up for retail products – which include print and digital books – by 16% in the last quarter.
Brian T. Olsavsky of Amazon during an investors call said that they were focusing on physical bookstores as being a key driver. “On the place of physical, again, as I mentioned in the earlier question, we are experimenting with a number of formats. You’ve seen the physical bookstores and I would say that the benefit there is again, we have a curated selection of titles and it’s also a great opportunity for people to touch and feel our devices and see them, especially the new Echo devices. I went into the store in Seattle last week and I saw about a third of the people were standing around the device table learning how they work, how they interact with devices. So, I saw firsthand the customer experience, I think, that’s what we’re seeing as a benefit to the physical stores right now.”
He went on to say “I don’t want to shortchange the rest of the bookstore and the ability to have curated selection and the creativity we’ve had in taking new look at the bookstores. So we are experimenting with different formats, and we look at different sizes and we look at revenue cost per square foot just like any other physical retailer. So, we haven’t essentially nailed the model yet, and we continue to experiment to see what works and how it differs by city or more suburban locations.”