“For products that consumers feel pretty comfortable buying without trying that they feel a good deal of familiarity with the online experience is fine because convenience tends to trump everything,” he said. “What people want is they want their time to be filled with experiences and if shopping isn’t an experience then they don’t shop. They’ll just sit online and do it in a very utilitarian kind of fashion.”
» Will more stores close in 2018? No comeback for traditional retailers
More than 12,000 stores are expected to close in 2018 — up from roughly 9,000 in 2017, according to Cushman & Wakefield, a marketing and data analysis firm.
“I think the early part of next year will be pretty bad … I think it will be tough,” Charlie O’Shea, Moody’s lead retail analyst, said.
The retail industry, which supports one in four American jobs, is undergoing major changes as consumers shift their focus to online shopping. Dozens of retailers filed for bankruptcy in 2017, and thousands of store locations closed across the U.S.
» RELATED: Toys ‘R’ Us to close all U.S. locations
For some younger consumers, malls have lost their appeal as the primary destination for shopping. Brooke Larney, a fourth-year finance student at the University of Dayton, said she hasn’t shopped in a store like Claire’s since middle school.
“I think we just need to move away from the brick and mortar stores and especially with amazon just taking over,” she said. “I never go to malls. I kind of just go online for anything I need and it delivers in two days.”
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