Bricks and mortar stores will stay in business as long as they reinvent themselves.
This is about combining digital and traditional – rather than either/or – and providing extra services and experiences that online can’t provide.
Sixty eight per cent of retailers believe bricks and mortar stores remain the most important channel for shoppers, and one third plan on expanding their footprint, according to a survey by the Australian Centre of Retail Studies released at the conference.
Speaking at the three-day World Retail Congress going on right now in Paris, Ian Cheshire – chief executive of Kingfisher (owner of B&Q, pictured) – highlighted how some retailers are embracing change. For example, B&Q has been redesigning store layout and employing space for events like do-it-yourself classes. “I can’t realistically outrange Amazon”, he said. “What I can do is make my range better curated and framed.”