Both RadioShack Corp. and Staples Inc. have removed Amazon.com lockers from their stores. It has been less than a year since this program began.
The chains put the system in place last year, with the purpose being so that Amazon shoppers could place an order online and pick it up at these stores with no extra shipping charges. It was a good plan for those who resided in urban apartments because it cut out the risk of their package being stolen if they were not home at the time of delivery.
When the decision for this partnership was made, Amazon was a major competitor to both companies. Brian Yarbrough, a retail analyst for Edward Jones & Co. located in St. Louis, says, “That was a little bit odd, but what they were hoping for was that when customers would come in to pick up stuff from the locker, they would pick up additional items. They weren’t seeing the incremental sales out of the deal.”
In an e-mail from president Demos Parneros, Staples said that it ended the partnership because it “didn’t meet the criteria we set up together.” The company declined to comment any further.
RadioShack also stated that it stopped the program because it "didn’t fit with its strategy," according to spokeswoman Merianne Roth. In an e-mail she said that, "Chief Executive Officer Joe Magnacca is cutting items to reduce clutter in stores while improving displays to boost sales of major brands such as Apple Inc."
Amazon is yet to respond to the situation. Amazon and other online retailers undercut both RadioShack’s prices and selection. RadioShack’s sales have seriously declined over the past six quarters, showing a loss of $200 million.
Sales for Staples have also been on the decline since Amazon began racking up the sales in office and school supplies. According to Bloomberg, "Staples gained 1.1 percent to $15.12 at the close in New York while RadioShack advanced 2 percent to $4.15. Amazon, based in Seattle, rose 2.6 percent to $312.03. This year Staples has increased 33 percent, RadioShack is up 96 percent and Amazon has risen 24 percent compared with a gain of 21 percent for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index."
Clearly these chains took a gamble to get more customers into their stores, and it failed.
Edited by Alisen Downey