We’ve made it through the end of another year, another holiday retail season and another decade. 2019 may go down as the year the retail apocalypse came to fruition, with chains like Barney’s, Forever 21, Payless and American Apparel shutting down, contributing to the more than 9,300 stores expected to close by the end of 2019, according to Business Insider. Despite this, estimates for the holiday season are forecast at $143.7 billion, a 14.1 percent increase from last year, according to Adobe.
Studies also found that mobile accounted for two-thirds of Black Friday traffic. However, brick-and-mortar stores did find success by using their online and physical stores together. Modern Retail examines how retailers are using their stores in new ways to engage and interact with customers. Buy online and pickup in store sales, for example, saw a 46.6% increase year-over-year, which also helped decrease the stampede of Black Friday traffic to spread it out over the weekend.
Below are some other stories that caught our eye this month, including some that take a look at the retail industry and brands over the last ten years.
- As part of their year-end and decade-end wrap ups, Business Insider wrote two interesting overviews of the retail industry broadly over the last ten years. The first examines the shopping technology that made an impact, ranging from BOPIS to RFID to automated checkout and smart mirrors. It’s an interesting look back to see how far the industry has come. The second article takes a more pessimistic view at why the 2010’s will be known as the retail apocalypse with traditional malls collapsing, e-commerce taking over and private equity buyouts front and center.
Vox’s The Goods asked a handful of writers to eulogize the brands that meant something to them that shut down over the last ten years, ranging from Blockbuster to Borders to Bon-Ton.
Looking to the future, Fast Company reports on Neighborhood Goods ‘department store of the future’ which recently opened in New York City. The store concept is to give both digitally native startups and established companies a space to introduce their products to customers, and opens with more than 40 brands, including Dollar Shave Club, Fossil, Rothy’s, and Wild One. And unlike department stores of the past, the key difference with Neighborhood Goods is that brands can be flexible in terms of how much space they use, how they use it, and how long they stay.