Barnes & Noble tapping Web to boost retail stores

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Barnes & Noble met recently with Vicinity, a Palo Alto, Calif., software start-up, to discuss ways to promote its retail locations via the Web. Barnes & Noble signed up to use Vicinity's Business Finder software, which allows consumers to search online for products and the nearest store.

Eric Winkler, VP-marketing at Vicinity, also said Barnes & Noble toyed with the idea of having consumers pick up online purchases at retail stores. For tax reasons, Barnes & Noble has kept its offline stores separate from, a public company backed by Barnes & Noble and Bertelsmann.

Copyright June 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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