eBay has been beta testing "shoppable windows" for physical retail stores for several months, and will officially launch the first ones in Manhattan this Saturday. While this is only a month-long experiment, it could turn into something much bigger for the company.
Reuters first reported on the upcoming windows, indicating that the screens will sell 30 items from Kate Spade Saturday, a fashion brand launched earlier this year by Fifth & Pacific. Alistair Barr reports:
The new screens measure about 9 feet across and 2 feet (0.6 meter) high and will appear on the front windows of closed stores. Shoppers will be able to touch the screens to order and have products delivered to them within an hour via courier. Payment will be accepted by the couriers through PayPal Here, a mobile payment service developed by eBay.
The company later took to its blog to discuss the endeavor a bit further.
"Each interactive storefront allows shoppers to select and order merchandise from Kate Spade Saturday, Kate Spade’s new weekender line, on a touchscreen, schedule a free one-hour delivery to anywhere in the city, and pay with PayPal Here upon delivery," the company says. "Our partnership brings the best of online shopping into the physical world, and rolls mobile technology, same-day delivery, and seamless digital payments into one end-to-end customer experience."
"Though this is only a month-long experiment, both Kate Spade parent company Fifth & Pacific Inc. and eBay Inc. are excited about the prospect of revolutionizing shopping," the company adds. "With about 40% of all retail spending in the U.S. now involving some kind of online engagement, interactive glass technology allows retailers to think about cubic versus square feet for their retail shops."
The Manhattan shoppable windows will be available to consumers until July 6th.