Seamless Shopping

Stores at last are melding online sites with their bricks-and-mortar presence

There's a lot of neat stuff online this holiday season, but nothing makes me happier than the Talbots (TLB) catalog. By techie standards, there's not much to celebrate: Just a plain old paper catalog now searchable on their Web site. Big deal? Well, actually, it is. That catalog represents much more than the site's technical prowess. It's a symbol of the melding of the online and offline retail world--one tiny example of convergence, retailer style. And it's great news for consumers.

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