Retail market changes
Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
6 December 2018
Retail market changes are akin to climate change
Are you paying attention to the many retail market changes? I am. Some fundamental changes are afoot. I believe the days of large generalized department stores are ending.
Macy’s, JC Penney, Belk, Bloomingdales and, of course, Sears. But don’t forget. This list includes Walmart, Kmart and Target. They are all in trouble.
I’m sure you hear deniers of climate change talking about the weather. You know the drill.
“Global warming is a hoax. Look at all this snow!” Or, “This Arctic blast is crazy. So much for global warming.”
The skeptics in Congress (not scientists but politicians) brought snowballs to session. “Here is to global warming,” before tossing them at environmental activists in the House of Representatives.
The problem here is the taking of weather as climate. They are two different things.
Same refrain from retailers on retail market changes.
“This is the busiest Christmas holiday shopping season ever.”
“So, retailers. You may have an impressive holiday season. You may even break records. Just don’t break your arms patting yourself on the back. It is a fall drizzle. The hurricane of retail market changes is still coming. And it’s a category 5.”
Retail market changes are REAL
Attention retailers— Get your heads out of the sand.
It won’t be long. Rising ocean levels are overrunning malls and anchor stores. Better look to moving to higher ground. Or, keep your eye on the weather and ignore severe climate changes in retailing.
Retail market changes reflect economies
Living organisms change. Social habits are such beasts. The seek out economies and exploit them.
This means that all endeavors naturally seek out the path of least resistance. When I speak of a search for economies, this is precisely what I mean. All things seek economy. Saving energy, dollars and effort.
Just visualize an elevator in an office building. Sure, some still use stairs. But, most queue up for the lifts. Retail market changes are the elevators. The old model is the stairwell.
So what has changed, and is it permanent?
The buying public has new habits. They type Amazon in their browsers before they even consider Googling. That is a permanent shift. It’s retail market change resulting from new economies.
It’s easier. It saves them time, money and aggravation.
The new consumer is price savvy. They learn what everything SHOULD cost. And they expect no shipping charges and next day delivery.
How does Amazon do it?
That is the new economy. Amazon does not have to support expensive retail locations in high-rent districts. Even Walmart, whose cost structure is less than traditional retail, has higher fixed costs than Amazon. Even with free shipping.
Christmas and Black Friday
So, retailers. You may have an impressive holiday season. You may even break records. Just don’t break your arms patting yourself on the back. It is a fall drizzle. The hurricane of retail market changes is still coming. And it’s a category 5.
What you currently count as an asset (owned real estate) is destined to become the world’s most expensive collection of billboards.
Hell. I might be wrong. I just hope you don’t get all your heat from wild fires.
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