Newegg Opens Another Store-That’s-Not-A-Store In Toronto

Image courtesy of Victor To

Online retailers have been expanding their brands into physical space, ranging from Amazon’s indie-style bookstores to Birchbox’s boutiques with crowdsourced locations. Some real-life retail locations are hybrids, though, like Amazon’s college campus pickup points where shoppers can’t directly buy anything. Newegg already has a facility like that in southern California, and this week opened another at their Canadian headquarters in Richmond Hill, ON, near Toronto.

Newegg_Richmond_Hill_Hybrid_CenterThe store isn’t a store, though. It has the major elements of a store: visitors can pick up their orders and look at new merchandise. The non-store, which the company calls a “Hybrid Centre” (it’s Canada, after all) will also hold events, including technology education seminars and “celebrity meet-and-greets.” Some of that educational programming will stream nationwide.

The one thing that doesn’t happen there is actual commerce: you can’t walk into the store hybrid centre, see something that you like, and buy it on the spot. You could place a will-call order with your smartphone and wait around for someone to fetch it from the warehouse.

That might take a while, though. The hybrid centre takes up less than 4,000 square feet of a complex of offices and a warehouse that totals 81,000 square feet. While the will-call center is a faster way to get your order, it won’t be instantaneous, and that’s why they aren’t even trying to call the new facility a store.

(via Chain Store Age)

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