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Mall of America tests 'livestream shopping' to bring guests back virtually

Since the coronavirus pandemic began, shoppers have been staying out of stores. So, the Mall of America is using a digital format to bring its stores to you.

BLOOMINGTON, Minnesota — Welcome to the age of 'livestream shopping,' an innovative way to get you inside the Mall of America.

Jill Renslow, the Senior VP of Business Development & Marketing at MOA walked us through the new tech.

She described it as "live real time shopping through a digital channel. It's kind of the new version of QVC." 

It's different than ordering off of Amazon or any of your go-to online stores.

This experience brings you inside a shop as a host showcases products. 

"You can interact with that host, learn about the products, and even ask questions and have them navigate through the store for you," explained Renslow.

Credit: KARE 11
Jill Renslow, Senior VP of Business Development & Marketing at MOA

Here's how it works: Mall of America has partnered with the shopping app Popshop Live. You download the free app and use the Mall of America's code: 'MOANOW.'  When you see something you'd like to buy, you click on 'photos' in the app and select the item you want. 

Credit: Mall of America

Another feature of the app: you'll get an alert every time one of the mall's shops goes live.

"It can be something for everyone. One day we might be able to sell toys to a certain customer, then we might be able to do apparel for women. It might be beauty products, the options are endless," described Renslow.

You can also contact MOA with suggestions for the next shop to go live.

"We've always been a brand that listens and modifies what we roll out, what our fans want to see, especially because this is a new program," said Renslow.

Plus, it's a way to keep the Mall of America thriving in a time when retailers are feeling a pinch. "We really feel like this compliments brick and mortar really well, because not only can you continue to come and shop with us in person at MOA, but this is another way to engage with us in a really fun and dynamic way," said Renslow.

Credit: KARE 11

When you livestream shop, you can either have your purchases mailed to you or pick them up curbside at MOA to avoid shipping fees.

RELATED: 'That's So Minnesota' Podcast: The Mall of America during COVID