From historically digital stores going physical, to physical stores going digital, it has become increasingly hard to predict where the industry is headed.
After 7 years, Amazon is officially closing all of its book stores, switching its focus to its physical grocery stores. And as that happens, physical grocers are going digital to embrace the online grocery shopping trend.
This week we uncover the shifts we are seeing major retailers take over the past few months.
FOOT TRAFFIC TRENDS
Industry insights so you can convert your foot traffic into more sales.
Amazon exits physical retail
Despite shoppers returning to physical stores, Amazon has decided to close all of its bookstores, 4-star stores, and pop-ups.
Amazon will continue to expand its grocery stores but is abandoning its roots of selling books in a physical store. Aside from Whole Foods, including locations opening this month, the company runs 85 grocery-oriented stores: 58 Amazon Fresh in the U.S. and U.K. and 27 Amazon Go convenience stores.
In Q1 of this year, Amazon saw a 3% decline in its online retail sales, yet its physical stores saw a dramatic increase year over year.
So why close all their stores? Amazon’s business is centered around logistics, technology, advertising, and as of late, less and less retail.
Malls gain momentum
Malls in the United States are slowly reaching full capacity after years of lackluster foot traffic.
Simon Property Group reported an occupancy rate at its U.S. malls and outlet centers of 93.9% as of Jan 30, up from 91.8% a year earlier. Although US malls saw 1,954 store closings this year, retailers in the U.S. have announced 4,432 new store openings.
Last year, the retail industry finished the year with a net addition of 68 stores. Even with all of the closures, this year has seen a net of 2,478 openings.