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Articles from DIAMOND JEWELLERY (806 Articles), RINGS - ENGAGEMENT (211 Articles)

Blue Nile's 'webroom' is designed to convert offline consumers to online customers
Blue Nile's 'webroom' is designed to convert offline consumers to online customers

Blue Nile plans bricks-and-mortar expansion

Online diamond and jewellery retailer Blue Nile has revealed plans to increase its number of physical stores after the success of its first bricks-and-mortar trial.

During his presentation at a recent conference in New York, Blue Nile CEO and president Harvey Kanter commented on the success of the online retailer’s first physical ‘webroom’.

As previously reported by Jeweller, the webroom opened in June this year at the Roosevelt Field Mall in Garden City, New York, allowing customers to physically examine a limited amount of stock and consult diamond jewellery consultants before making purchases online via in-store tablets.

Harvey Kanter, Blue Nile CEO and president
Harvey Kanter, Blue Nile CEO and president

The webroom concept, designed to convert offline consumers into online customers, was said to be an evolution of the ‘shop-in-shop’ experiment Blue Nile conducted in partnership with US fashion specialty retail chain Nordstrom in 2014.

Kanter explained the pioneer store had exceeded expectations, achieving a greater number of transactions than the Nordstrom trial. “We are seeing measurably better conversion [and] incredible levels of traffic,” he stated.

Based on this success, Kanter said the company planned to open two to four stores in 2016 in order to continue testing the concept, although no locations were specified.

Blue Nile’s announcement follows news that US-based online fashion jewellery retailer BaubleBar also opened its first bricks-and-mortar store at Roosevelt Field Mall in June this year.

“Our first concept store is all about taking the experience she [the consumer] loves online and bringing it to life, both for existing customers to experience in-person and for new customers to discover and enjoy,” a BaubleBar spokesperson told Jeweller, adding that the product available in-store would be an edited version of the online offering.   

In another indication that online retailers have identified advantages in possessing a physical presence, retail giant Amazon launched a pick-up and drop-off location at a US university in February.

More reading
Blue Nile struggles with high-end jewellery
Blue Nile shifts to bricks-and-mortar retailing
Amazon rumoured to trial brick-and-mortar store
Blue Nile’s ups and downs

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Monday, 21 January, 2019 06:15am
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