Taobao.com, the Internet shopping subsidiary of the Chinese B2B e-commerce group Alibaba, has announced that it has started to deploy authorized offline stores to provide convenience to consumers who cannot shop online in China.
The first batch of 150 offline authorized stores of Taobao.com has been put into operation in Hangzhou, Zhejiang. The Internet retail platform plans to deploy over 30,000 such stores in communities and schools across China before the end of 2010.
By paying a small service fee, consumers can ask these authorized stores to help them buy various products on Taobao.com and they can then pay for these products in cash.
In addition, consumers will be free from fraud problems that are common for Internet shopping, because each of these authorized stores has paid a certain amount of margin to Taobao.com. If these stores violate the rights and interests of consumers, Taobao.com will compensate the consumers.