Retail store: Museums of E-commerce

Yesterday, I walked into a Titan store, spend 30 minutes browsing through the display and trying on the different models of watches (expensive bracelets as many youngsters now call it). The second I spotted the perfect piece, I immediately logged online, compared prices and bought it online.

Are stores becoming relics of the previous generation/centuries? It is common place for people to bargain on the mobile, tablets & electronics by showing the retailer online prices/discounts. Buying purely on specs is also in vogue, but still most people like to physically feel, test and use the product before buying it online. The retail shop has now become little more than a museums where people visit not to buy but for the physical experience of the product.

People are caring less about physical world and more about the virtual world. The man caught without the gadget probably ran out of battery or was pick-pocketed.

Recently a product RedMI 1s has bypassed the physical store, distribution & logistics completely and decided to sell exclusively online. (it sold more phones in 4 seconds than what established brands sell in months) 10 years ago Reva’s G-wiz was sold in London not through showrooms but through online booking for test-drives. Several retailers now charge “slotting fees” to the various brands for stocking, display and demos of the products rather than a commission on the sale. It would be long before high rentals of physical store will make them unviable.

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