I recently attended Chain Store Age’s 49th annual SPECS conference where they debuted a brand new Real Estate Development segment. While I always come away from SPECS with plenty to think about, this new track provided some interesting insight into subjects impacting retailers and developers specifically, and I was privileged enough participate in the new track by hosting a session titled, “Smaller Stores, Bigger Markets: Advantages and Obstacles to Urban Growth.” Throughout my time at the conference, a noticed several key trends emerging. In this edition of Retail Rap, I share my thoughts on some of those trends and how they will impact retailers and developers moving forward.
Given the strengthening of online and mobile shopping, it’s increasingly evident that optimizing brick-and-mortar portfolios is a higher priority than ever for retailers. It begins with knowing the number of supportable retail stores and knowing the optimal size that your box should be. With the increase in online shopping, the amount of square footage needed for most retailers is shrinking. But there is another piece to this puzzle, and I was glad to see it addressed. You can’t optimize a portfolio without really understanding where and why customers are shopping, and where, why and how the breakdown between online shopping, mobile retailing, and traditional brick-and-mortar shopping is taking place.
Check out the full article from my recurring column, Retail Rap, at Chain Store Age.