The Treasure Truck, one of Amazon’s efforts to poke at the traditional brick-and-mortar retail model, will now roll into 18 cities as the retailer tries to amp up its hipness factor and generate buzz for its brand.
Amazon’s announcement Friday of the expansion doubles the number of locations for the brightly colored trucks, where deal-hungry consumers can snap up daily specials of trendy or local items.
The Twin Cities has been a Treasure Truck stopover for several months. The festive pop-up shop on wheels showed up Friday at a downtown Minneapolis parking lot at 10th Street and Marquette Avenue, hawking a limited number of Super Nintendo Classic Edition for $80 the same day the entertainment system went on sale nationwide. It quickly sold out at many locations.
Although some retailers priced the console at $140, Richfield-based Best Buy had it priced at $79.99, and lines formed at many stores before doors opened. A spokesman declined to say whether there were any left in stock.
Amazon’s Treasure Truck program began two years ago, bringing the spirit of the old Kmart Blue Light Special and doorbusting Black Friday sales to urban street corners.
In the Twin Cities, deal-of-the-day items have included toys, electronics and a steak-and-seafood special, which was timed with the announcement of Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods.
The Treasure Truck programs launch without much fanfare. Amazon encourages people to sign up for text alerts and publicizes the daily flash specials through social media.
In addition to the Twin Cities, the trucks are now in the following metros: Atlanta; Austin, Texas; Boston; Chicago; Dallas; Houston; Los Angeles; Miami; Nashville, Tenn.; New York; Orlando; Phoenix; Portland, Ore.; San Antonio; San Diego; Seattle; and Tampa, Fla.