Shoppers can go from browsing the latest technology to state-of-the-art cookware to popular books in one brief stroll around the Amazon 4-star outlet store, the newest attraction at Park Meadows mall in Lone Tree.
Amazon 4-star opened Nov. 1 and is an assortment of products found on Amazon.com rated at four stars or better. Real customer reviews and average online ratings, up to five stars, accompany product price tags.
Some displays are advertised as “Trending in Denver,” marking the placement of products with high online popularity from Denver-area shoppers. Other displays are labeled “Frequently Bought Together” and “Most Wished-For,” popular categories when shopping on Amazon.
“It's all about product discovery at a place like this,” said Cameron Janes, vice president of Amazon 4-star. “These products are on Amazon.com, but you're not often exposed to them because you're searching for your specific thing. Here, we make it really easy to discover something for yourself or for gifts, and because everything makes that curation bar, you don't have to worry about if it's a good product. They're all good products.”
Danny Kim and his family, who live in Littleton, are frequent shoppers on Amazon.com. His wife and his son, Maximus, walked around the new store on its opening day impressed with the variety of products they loved online.
“It's a chance for us to get our hands on the stuff,” Danny Kim said. “It's more convenient than getting something, then having to wait for it and return it if we don't like it. If you really like something you can get it.”
The Park Meadows Amazon 4-star is just the second one in the United States. The first Amazon 4-star opened in New York in September. The space at Park Meadows was initially reserved for an Amazon Books store, another brick-and-mortar Amazon shop, of which there are 18 in the country, focusing mostly on books and tablets. According to Amazon officials, the company changed its mind and brought a 4-star instead.
Evelyn Scott, a local librarian and Park Meadows shopper, was surprised to see an Amazon 4-star, but said she thinks the store will be useful when trying to find gifts for her granddaughter. Scott said she is an Amazon Prime member and will still likely shop online primarily. Scott said she thinks the store would be helpful to test out newer products.
“I think it's interesting that we're heading so much toward technology and things online, but then we come right back to people still want to touch and see it,” Scott said.
The store also features Amazon's flagship products like the Kindle e-book reader, Kindle Fire tablet and Ring, a front door security camera. Amazon Prime members are offered a discount price, which matches the product's online price.
Products in the store are constantly changing, Janes said, reflecting changes in local trends or seasonal products. Janes added that a product is immediately pulled off the shelves if it fails to meet at least four stars online. The curation process is done by Amazon employees.
“They're looking at those products that are selling well and are highly rated and using some human judgment as well. There's some art and science involved as well,” Janes said. “We're constantly curating the store and making sure it lives up to the name on the front.”
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