Surviving the Retail Apocalypse

In the last few months, I have seen the closure of a few well-known branded and smaller retail stores. Across the headlines, we are hearing about the retail apocalypse. If you have been in the malls you will notice that some familiar stores have closed out.
On the flip side, there are new tenants that are taking their place. We often don’t hear about these in the headlines.

I have been in business for over almost 30 years and have operated bricks and mortar retail, and franchise establishments. I have seen the closure of stores such as Eatons, Sears, Target Zellers and so many more. However, I have also seen the rise of stores taking their places such as Walmart, Simons, and Zara. Or in the food sector, Planet Organics or Whole Foods.

Every January, I have seen lots of stores close and many new ones will take its place. Some will stay in business until the end of December just to make sure that they take advantage of the Christmas rush.

In retail, sometimes the fourth quarter will make or break the overall sales. Some businesses will rush to get ready and open their stores in the fourth quarter because they know that is a time for huge sales in the retail sector.

In order to stay relevant in today’s environment, bricks and mortar retail businesses will need to be more creative.

Creating a memorable experience is the key to drawing in shoppers. Adding more experiences to attract customers is the way to go. This may mean having in-store café’s. Reorganizing the space. Stores that are using their space for eating, or for classes, and bringing in additional services, are seeing better results.

More businesses are investing in e-commerce. However, customers like to blend both worlds- online and offline.

In order to get foot traffic into your stores, combining the online with the offline is important. Customers like the ease of using the physical stores for pick-up or for returns or exchanges.

Customers will stay longer in the stores if there is something to keep them there. Re-organizing the space and design in retail stores is one of the ways to get customers in the stores and keep them longer.

If you own a bricks and mortar retail or service business, and you would like help to get more customers in the door, reach out to us at Bailey Brown Business Consulting.

Do you think retail will survive the apocalypse?

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