Choose Retail Over Online Seems To Continue.
Which consumers choose retail over online and why?
The retail apocalypse is certainly upon us. By the end of 2017, thousands of stores will be shutting down. Yet there are people who choose retail over online to shop.
More than 3,500 stores are expected to close in the next few months.
JCPenney, Macy’s, Sears, and Kmart along with Crocs, BCBG, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Guess have all announced store closings.
Some retailers, like Bebe, are exiting the brick-and-mortar business altogether in an effort to shift to an all-online model according to a Bloomberg report.
While some retailers are shutting down completely. The Limited recently shut down all 250 of its stores.
The reason for this retail apocalypse is rooted in the fact that we are overstored. In the US, there are 23.5 square feet of retail space per person, compared with 16.4 square feet in Canada and 11.1 square feet in Australia, the next two countries with the most retail space per capita, according to a Morningstar Credit Ratings report from October.
Visits to shopping malls have been declining for years with the rise of e-commerce and shifts in how shoppers spend their money. According to a study by Cushman and Wakefield, there were 35 million visits to shopping malls in 2010. By 2013, visits had declined to 17 million. By 2016 that number has fallen to 11 million.
How can all of these stores be closing when so many consumers still choose retail over online? Or maybe there just are not enough of them.
Who Still Shops In Retail Stores
I can understand this behavior for supermarkets and fashion.
It certainly is not a guy thing.
The State Of Brick And Mortar Retail
Brick and mortar retail will never completely disappear. But this should be a wake up call to all retailers. Consumers have too many choices and are looking for experiential shopping. There are many people who still choose retail over online when shopping, Each brick and mortar retailer should start asking themselves these questions:
What do I sell that the consumer cannot get cheaper and more convenient online?
How can i solve the problem the consumer is seeking to solve?
What is it that I can say about my stores that my competitors cannot say?
Online shopping is consumer centric where the buyer is in control of what they are looking for, the price they are willing to pay and who they choose to purchase from. Retail has long been retailer centric and took the consumer for granted.
This retail apocalypse is going to change the face of brick and mortar forever.