Any discussion about what’s on tap for 2013 has to start with the economy and consumer spending. Even though there are signs of recovery, including recent successes by the Dow and an improving housing market, consumers still appear to be nervous to open their wallets. In the latest edition of my Retail Rap column with Chain Store Age, I discuss consumer spending trends and how that impacts retailer spending, as well as other big-picture trends that I see becoming prominent issues this year–including retailers moving to smaller store concepts and the impact of mobile shopping, or “e-tailing.”
While I enjoy reading the annual sales predictions and yearly retail real estate outlook columns published each year, they often have a tendency to get bogged down in the details. When forecasting in the medium- to long-term, it’s often best to focus on the big-picture trends — an approach that not only avoids the all-too-common problem of missing the forest for the trees, but provides important insights about where the industry may be headed, not just in six or 12 months, but in six or 12 years. With that perspective in mind, I see several significant developments in store for the remainder of 2013.
Check out the full article from my recurring column, Retail Rap, at Chain Store Age.