Bricks and mortar is enjoying a resurgence according to new research with Australians making 90 million more visits to physical retail stores in the 2015/2016 financial year than they did in the year before that.
Roy Morgan’s latest retail-themed State of the Nation report states that while bricks and mortar visits are still well down on five years ago (by some 100 million trips despite our growing population) it has shown signs of a turnaround more recently.
“In 2008, when Roy Morgan first focused on retail in a State of the Nation report, we asked our audience and readers to ‘imagine a world with no shops’,” explained Michele Levine, CEO Roy Morgan Research.
“Back then, the burgeoning digital age and rise of online shopping appeared to pose a serious threat to traditional bricks and mortar stores.
“These days, bricks and mortar stores are anything but traditional. To survive in these changing times, retailers have had to develop a more omni-channel approach, so customers can choose how they shop with them: online, offline or a mixture of both.
“And they’ve been successful―just over a third of Australians’ internet spending goes to the online channel of ‘traditional’ retailers (as opposed to online-only stores). Considering that traditional retailers’ share of the online market was close to zero in 2010, this shows the progress they’ve made,” she added.
The increased foot traffic is partly due to the growing ‘retailtainment’ trend with stores adding an element of entertainment such as a café or in-store music to enhance the customers’ shopping experience.
“As the latest State of the Nation shows, they’ve also made progress in terms of boosting foot traffic to their physical stores, by enticing shoppers with a more entertaining in-store experience.
“However, given that Aussies are spending more on experiences and less on discretionary commodities than they were just 12 months ago, bricks and mortar retailers now face the challenge of turning this enhanced shopping experience into actual purchases. Especially with further competition anticipated by several more overseas retailers with Australia set firmly in their sights…,” said Levine.
This story originally appeared on Giftguide.
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