Amazon Books in Bethesda, MD
Arlington Road in downtown Bethesda, MD is teemed with nicely-decorated stores and restaurants. As dusk falls, the neon signs glitter, lighting up the dim walkway. Facing an Apple store adorned with their huge well-known logo is a quiet, modest-looking store, whose storefront is low-key with a simple sign “amazonbooks” and a familiar orange curved arrow stretching from “a” to “z”, the logo of the online shopping giant, Amazon.
I paced into the only Amazon offline store in Maryland, curious about what Amazon looks like without the Internet. Just as its name states, it is mainly a bookstore. Books are neatly arranged on the honey-colored wood bookshelves, book covers facing outwards. Under each book, a small tag displays its number of reviews on Amazon, review mean score, and a selected customer review. Kayla, a friendly young lady working at this store, told us the books here were chosen by the Amazon headquarter based on what books people are buying online, book ratings, and Amazon reviews.
Amazonbooks store is also a showcase for Amazon electronic devices. According to Kayla, not only do they sell a wide variety of books, but the store also allows customers to try out and buy Amazon devices such as the Kindle, Alexa, Robot, etc. In addition, it helps making Amazon online return easier. “If you live close by, you can bring a return from online to our store and we can ship it back to the warehouse for you,” said Kayla.
Along with convenience comes advantages for Amazon shoppers. The Amazon bookstore sell their products the same price as they do online. Prime membership allows customers to have more benefits, such as a certain percentage subtracted from the original price.
I ambled through rows of bookcases, eyes flitting from one book cover to another. For book lovers, nothing is more beautiful than being surrounded by great books. I am glad that among all the stores decorated with glimmering lights and blaring signs, I noticed this homely bookstore by Amazon.