When do Co‐located Firms Selling Identical Products Thrive?

<p>When consumers only see prices once they visit stores, and some consumers have time to comparison shop, co-location commits stores to compete and lower prices, which draws consumers away from isolated stores. Profits of co-located firms are a single-peaked function of the number of shoppers—co-located firms thrive when there are some shoppers, but not too many. When consumers know in advance whether they have time to shop, effects are enhanced: co-located stores may draw enough shoppers to drive the expected price paid by a non-shopper below that paid when consumers do not know if they will have time to shop.</p>