Procter & Gamble, one of the largest consumer goods corporations in North America and beyond, has opened a direct online store for customers in the US. The Internet store, dubbed the eStore, debuts today with a beta tag attached to its name.
The eStore is owned and operated by PFSweb and features the breadth of P&G brands, including Tide, Head & Shoulders, Pampers, Swiffer, Gillette and Febreze.
P&G has launched the eStore with a single, flat rate for standard shipping rate of $5, regardless of quantity or product size.
From the press release:
The eStore’s main function is to act as a “living learning lab” for developing e-commerce innovation to win with shoppers. Shopper insights will continue to be a strong influence in the eStore’s ongoing development to help deliver tools, features and expertise that are great for consumers and also create value and sales for PFSweb, P&G and P&G’s retail partners.
In other words, P&G insists the venture’s main goal is to learn more about online shopping, and not to compete with stores and online retailers that also sell its products. Yeah, right.
Prior to the national launch, the eStore was tested on some 5,000 shoppers to help guide the design and development of the “ideal” on-line shopping site.
The site today features Brand Shop pages (dedicated shopping sections per brand, e.g. Pantene PRO-V), service options and tools for customized product selection, social media integrations and a rating & review section for shoppers to provide feedback on their shopping experiences.
P&G says there will also be a mobile phone application available soon, which will help shoppers purchase their favorite products at the eStore with photos from their mobile phones.
If I were Alice.com, I’d be a little worried.