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Amazon opens first non-food retail store in the UK

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Amazon opens first non-food retail store in the UK
The new store features a large tech section dedicated to Amazon's own devices such as its Kindle e-Readers, Fire tablets, and smart speakers. Photo: Amazon

Amazon (AMZN) will open its first '4-star' store concept outside the US at the Bluewater shopping centre near Dartford in Kent on Wednesday.

Some 2,000 products that are rated four-star or above on Amazon’s website will be on sale at the new shop. This could range from Lego sets, books and pet toys to kitchen gadgets.

There will also be a large tech section dedicated to Amazon's own devices such as its Kindle e-Readers, Fire tablets, and smart speakers.

The goods on sale will change regularly, depending on what is selling well online. Amazon has around 30 such stores in the US for which the company has received "super positive feedback." The first 4-star store opened in New York in 2018.

Photo: Amazon
The goods on sale will change depending on what is selling well online. Photo: Amazon

Andy Jones, director for Amazon 4-star, UK, said “convenience is part of the store offer.” Shoppers can scan a QR code and get charged later from their account, or pay in-store the traditional way.

Digital price tags are located next to each product with the item price, average star rating, and the number of customer reviews.

“The Amazon 4-star store is a great place for customers to discover hot new releases, guaranteed page-turners, topselling electronics, and more," he said.

He added that "every part of the store is designed with our customers in mind and we think they will be delighted by the curated selection of the most-loved products at great prices, opportunity to test drive Amazon’s latest devices, and the convenience of pick-up and returns.”

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Customers can collect or return orders made on Amazon online without the need for packaging and labels.

Unlike its Fresh store, this shop does not have Amazon's "Just Walk Out" technology. Customers can pay with cash, credit card or through the Amazon app but having an Amazon account is not necessary.

This is different from Amazon's no-check out grocery store, which opened in the UK earlier this year. To use that, customers need to be signed up to Amazon’s Prime subscription service, which costs £7.99 ($11) a month. 

Read more: Amazon opens first no-checkout store outside US in London

In addition to its Fresh store, the online shopping giant has also opened a hair salon and six convenience stores in Britain this year.

It is unclear if the company wants to open more 4-star stores in the UK.

Watch: Amazon opens UK store without tills

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