The Bricks and Mortar Renaissance

By Julian Thumm | 27 Jan 2016

One of the defining retail trends of 2015 was the return to bricks and mortar retailing. The infographic below outlines the benefits of a physical storefront and how it can complement an online store.

As discussed in Power Retail’s end of year wrap up, bricks-and-mortar stores are undergoing somewhat of a renaissance. As pureplay online retail emerged, retailers and analysts announced the death of the physical shopfront.

More recently, however, the prevailing rhetoric has been the death of pureplay as an increasing number of previously online-only retailers have established bricks-and-mortar operations, whether in the form of a flagship store (like Mon Purse or EMU Australia), a pop-up store (like Kogan) a department store partnership (see Mon Purse again), or whatever it is Amazon is doing with its Seattle bookshop.

Previously online-focused retailers seem to be discovering the benefits of bricks-and-mortar operations. Increasingly, an online retailer’s business plan will include some kind of physical store to complement online operations.

There are a variety of reasons for this retail about-face, which are elaborated in this infographic from people-counting software providers SMS Storetraffic.

There are three main benefits to a bricks-and-mortar shopfront:

  • Multisensory consumer experience: Physical shopping allows customers to touch and try on products to make a more informed purchase.
  • Better logistics and customer service: Physical stores can be used as storage and shipping centres, while also generating foot traffic and providing a crucial face-to-face customer service point.
  • Build brand relationships: Bricks-and-mortar stores helps brands to establish customer relationships and create richer shopping experiences.

See the infographic below for more detail.



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