The Retail Apocalypse Is Not Happening: Why Retailers Who Innovate Will Never Go Extinct

Curb appeal, store design, location, location, location. These are all determinants of a retail store’s success that are becoming less and less relevant. Unfortunately, many retailers have failed to adapt to new consumer behaviors.

This year alone, major retailers such as Bon-Ton department stores and Toys R Us permanently closed, while J.C. Penney, Sears and Macy’s announced major store closures. With e-commerce stealing more and more business, brick-and-mortar locations are struggling to stay relevant.

Are these the first signs of the retail apocalypse? Far from it. The signs have been around for years. Some retailers saw these signs and adapted their business models years ago. These retail chains understand the biggest advantage e-commerce retailers have is their ability to collect and leverage insights into consumer behaviors gained by technological innovations like big data. They are adopting technology and processes to achieve the same advantage and adapt to today’s retail landscape. Others are slower to adapt and now face an uphill battle to avoid extinction.

The truth is, brick-and-mortar retail is not dead. According to Market Track, U.S. shoppers still prefer to make most of their purchases in-store.

What Does The New Face Of Retail Look Like?

The real impact e-commerce has on the retail industry is in consumer expectations. Consumers now expect a more convenient, tailored omnichannel shopping experience, whether they are online or in-store. The new face of retail involves consumers engaging with a brand seamlessly across their e-commerce, brick-and-mortar, social media and every other channel to create unified, consistent encounters.


Written by: Lucas Roh