A new year dawns and, with it, a chance to seize upon the optimism of a new decade. The news reports more woe for the retail sector; HMV and Debenhams confirming their store closures and commentators saying that 2019 was the worst for retail sales in 25 years. Yet, is it all doom and gloom?
Those of us working in the retail sector know that it’s been tough to make conventional shopping work for many years, and yet we are told physical retailing is not dying. Instead it, is evolving, with retailers finding new ways to pass on their goods to the consumer – with one key area bucking the trend being outlet centres.
Shoppers still love the thought of a bargain – even if they can find similar discounts on the high street. In the early days of FOC it used to be small units stocking factory seconds or end of line products, all sold at a discount. We are told that big-brands are key to the success of the factory outlet as they attract the leisure shopper looking for a favoured brand or product, but at a cheaper price. But If it were just a bargain they were after, surely the internet would be the better place to shop?
Therein lies the opportunity.