Google Goes Retail in London Town

Ryan Whitwam

Google has spent most if its existence being an innovative web company, but the search giant has just jumped into a decidedly old-business environment: retail stores. Yes, the first ever Google store just opened in London to push ChromeBooks through the holiday season. The so-called "pop-up store" has been erected in PC World, a larger electronics retailer.

It isn’t being given the same attention as the first Apple Store, but Google’s UK branch is at least willing to acknowledge its existence. “It's something Google is going to play with and see where it leads," said Google’s head of UK consumer marketing. most consumers are not comfortable buying laptops online, so having an in-store presence is important when selling people on a cloud-based device like a ChromeBook.

It would be interesting to see Google continue with this in other regions. It’s hard to do retail well, but a successful experience can be a boon to consumer sentiment. Do you think Google will open more retail locations, or is this it?

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