E-commerce is helping rather than hindering brick and mortar retailers – The Property Chronicle
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E-commerce is helping rather than hindering brick and mortar retailers CBRE research shows how traditional retailers are evolving to keep up with e-commerce shopping habits

The Analyst

It’s tempting, even popular these days to claim that e-commerce is wiping out traditional retailing. It’s also wrong.

The demonstrable reality is that online and in-store retail can coexist quite nicely, even beneficially with e-commerce. Consider the International Council of Shopping Centers’ recent calculation that roughly half of U.S. online sales in 2016 were generated by retailers born of bricks and mortar.

To be sure, e-commerce is growing rapidly, but much of that growth can be traced to retailers firmly established in both worlds. That has substantial implications going forward for retail property.

The days of U.S. equity markets judging retailers by how many stores they open are gone. Retailers’ performance is now judged by many more variables, including their balance of online and in-store sales, the flexibility of their supply chains and new store formats. They now have far more data and tools available to them than ever before to analyze potential store sites.

Still, we’re now seeing well-known retailers fail due to sins of the past, be it debt loads incurred in private-equity buyouts or overly aggressive expansion or the rigidity of their concepts. The temptation, then, is to assume that the struggles of Toys R Us, Sports Authority, bankrupt retailers and various department stores are representative of the broader industry. That’s not accurate for several reasons:

The Analyst

About Melina Cordero

Melina Cordero

Melina Cordero is Americas Head of Retail Research for CBRE, the world’s largest commercial real estate services company. She analyzes the influence of industry and consumer trends on retail real estate for clients and for CBRE’s more than 500 retail professionals in the Americas. Ms. Cordero, based in Washington, D.C., joined CBRE in 2016 after working for three years for U.K.-based data and consumer-analytics company Path Intelligence. Earlier in her career, she worked as a global industry analyst tracking retail and consumer-goods industries for Euromonitor International in London and for the U.K. Parliament in urban planning and business policy research. Ms. Cordero wrote her Master’s thesis on shopping center development and consumer behavior in Brazilian cities. Follow her on Twitter at @melinascordero.

Articles by Melina Cordero

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