Looking to the future, expect to see the continued shift from retail shopping centers to entertainment and dining centers continue. That is according to Melina Ferraez, director of marketing at Victoria Gardens, a Forest City property. “Online shopping is certainly here to stay, and many believe that retail stores will continue to have smaller physical footprints as a result,” she says. “That said, brick and mortar spaces will remain important for retailers in terms of brand awareness, as well as to accommodate shoppers who still want the traditional shopping experience of browsing and purchasing a product in-store.”
Ferraez points out that “the Millennial generation will continue to drive trends in retail, as will their younger counterparts, who are likely to have their own unique demands.” The key for retail centers today and retailers to come, she adds, is to do everything possible to avoid becoming stagnant or complacent with a center design or tenant make up. “Retail centers must constantly evolve to reflect changing tastes and accommodate new generations of shoppers.”
According to Brandon Famous, Americas head of retail occupier advisory and transaction services at CBRE, over the next 15 years there will be further integration of e-commerce with bricks and mortar and retailers will continue to focus on the consumer experience.
Some of the key questions retailers should ask themselves, according to Famous, are: “What are we doing to get the consumers in the store? How do we keep them in the store longer? What psychological or emotional behavior can we analyze to get them to spend more?” He notes that “Retailers will become more sophisticated in how they refine online shopping and brick and mortar to get people in the store, keep them there longer and spend more money”, according to globest.com.