Shopify offers advice, but no products, at new DTLA shop

E-commerce brand opens first brick-and-mortar location

Shopify, an online marketplace that sells products ranging from Kylie Cosmetics to Budweiser beer, has opened its first brick-and-mortar shop in Downtown Los Angeles.

But don’t expect there to be any of Shopify’s online products on display.

The e-commerce platform is instead offering up business advice at the new outpost, located at the Row DTLA. Its “comprehensive network of Gurus” will also teach its existing and potential merchants how to navigate the Shopify platform, according to a company statement published Thursday.

David Pressberg, a retail broker at Kennedy Wilson, said he anticipates there will be more of this type of retail offering in the next few years as online shopping continues to outpace traditional retail. 

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“I look at these stores as them putting a billboard in the middle of town for people to go to their website,” Pressberg said.

This retail concept has already expanded into fashion and even health care, he added. Nordstrom Local, which sells no clothes but offers personal stylists and manicures, is opening its third shop in L.A. Smile Direct Club, an online orthodontics company that provides invisible aligners, now lets clients take a 3D image in its flagship store in Beverly Hills, only to then mail them the aligners.

In the statement, Shopify said it chose L.A. for its first in-person location because of its strong customer base in the city. There are 10,000 Shopify merchants in L.A. alone, with more than 400 of them generating over $1 million in annual revenue.

The firm signed a two-year lease at the Row, the Los Angeles Business Journal reported. It will be joining Adidas, Spaces and advertising studio WC+A.