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Wayfair CEO stresses differences with Amazon

  • Niraj Shah said he believes the online furniture category is different from other categories that face pressure from Amazon.

  • He said people "want to own unique items" of furniture and decor. "So, the way you shop for them, it's very visual in nature."

  • "That nature doesn't lend itself to search, keyword search," Wayfair's stock closed up nearly 4 percent on Wednesday.

Wayfair CEO Niraj Shah drew some clear distinctions between his company and online retail behemoth Amazon, he told CNBC's "Closing Bell" on Wednesday.

Shah said he believes the online furniture category is different from other specialized online categories that face pressure from Amazon.

"Furniture, decor, these types of items, these are non-branded items where people ... want to own unique items, so they don't want to own the same exact items as everyone else. So, the way you shop for them, it's very visual in nature," he said.

Wayfair's stock closed up nearly 4 percent on Wednesday.

"That nature doesn't lend itself to search, keyword search," the CEO added. "All of a sudden the visual merchandising you would need and the way a customer discovers what they want is different, and then the fulfillment and delivery is different."

"There's all kind of things that you need to handle ... differently than perhaps if you're, again, selling batteries, and books and the like," Shah said.

Wayfair is one of the market's best performers this year with its shares up 83 percent year to date versus the S&P 500's 7 percent return as of Wednesday's close.

Shares of Wayfair surged more than 20 percent on Tuesday after the online furniture company reported better-than-expected earnings, hurting short sellers.

Nevertheless, short-sellers such as Andrew Left at Citron Research are continuing to short Wayfair.

"I'm still short Wayfair ... The company still loses more money. I think their cash burn was the second highest ever. They are showing no path toward profitability whatsoever," Citron's Andrew Left told CNBC on Wednesday. Wayfair's short interest is 13.6 million shares, according to FactSet.