Facebook is expanding into brick-and-mortar retail with a little help from Macy’s. Earlier in the week, the social networking company opened a series of pop-up stores within nine Macy’s stores in anticipation of the holiday shopping season. The stores feature products from over 100 small brands that primarily do their marketing and business online. Many of these brands, including Two Blind Brothers, the Charleston Gourmet Burger Company, and Love Your Melon, are owned by well-known Facebook and Instagram users who use the platforms as marketing headquarters.
The pop-up stores are based in Macy’s “The Market” spaces, which are typically used for highlighting new and upcoming brands. Any profit turned from these pop-up stores is Facebook’s alone; Macy’s will not take a cut, instead taking only a one-time space usage fee from Facebook. Senior VP of the consumer research firm Magid, Matt Sargent, spoke to NBC News about this joint effort. “When an e-commerce brand can physically reach out to a customer and engage them, it really throws gasoline on that interest,” he said. “One of the things we found is apparel shoppers at Macy’s are much more digitally focused socially than the vast majority of customers out there. Macy’s is understanding this and it allows them to engage with their customers in ways other retailers can’t.”
No word on how long the pop-ups will be there, but it’s a safe bet it will be at least until the end of the Holiday season.