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The death of malls in America

Posted: 3:52 PM, May 23, 2017
Updated: 2017-05-23 17:52:03-04

This year 3,500 retail stores will be closing their doors. Big name companies like Macy’s, JC Penney and Sears are having a hard time staying open. With thousands of stores closing nationwide, this has caused hundreds of malls to do the same. Online shopping has taken over the way people consume. 

Retail expert Reyna Alishio is the EVP at The Integer Group and says, “digital completely reinvented shopping behavior and shopper’s expectations and malls have not necessarily kept up with those expectations.”  

RELATED: 14 major retailers closing stores in 2017

Malls use to be the ultimate hangout. The first indoor Mall of America was built in 1956 in a small Minnesota town. It was called the Southdale Center. 60 years later and the outlook on malls has completely changed. Alishio says, it’s because “shopper’s expectations are changing so rapidly.” 

An indoor mall hasn’t been built in America since 2006 and that has forced existing malls to reinvent themselves. Some malls have added movie theaters, restaurants and bowling alleys. Alishio believes that if malls want to stay alive, they must bridge the gap between online and in-store retail.

“A relationship you begin in a digital social media conversation that you continue on into the store.” 

If they take a unique approach and both offer what the other can’t, then she says that might meet the desires of shoppers.