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Signs show retail’s strength and ability to bounce back, indicators point to retail’s quick recovery

Monday, May 17, 2021

There are clear indicators that showcase retail’s strength as an industry. And now, retailer’s are stepping up to the plate to meet consumer demands and stay on a steady path towards revival.

Here are signs that show retail’s ability to bounce back in a post-pandemic setting:

A Consistent Jump in US Retail Sales

The main sign that proves retail’s rebound is its performance during the height of the pandemic. Almost every month, US retail sales increased both month-over-month and year-over-year. 

“Consumer spending in March 2021 has recovered to or exceeded spending in February 2020 — prior to the onset of the pandemic and related containment measures — in all categories except food and drink establishments. We continue to expect restaurants and bars, and other entertainment and hospitality venues, to be the slowest retail businesses to recover from the crisis. Overall, however, the March data highlighted the strength of the consumer recovery in the U.S,” said Cailin Birch, Global Economist at The Economist Intelligence Unit. 

Apparel Retail is Changing

Wells Fargo analysts recently found that store traffic is up, inventory is lean and margins are expanding. These are all positive indicators for apparel brands. Sales in clothing and accessories are robust and will only continue to accelerate in the next few months. 

Thousands of Brick-and-Mortar Openings

Store openings are now outpacing store closures. According to Coresight Research, US retailers had plans for 3,344 new stores as of March this year, which is up 39.5% compared to the same point last year. 

Openings will be dominated by players in the market such as Five Below, Burlington, At Home, DICK’s Sporting Goods, Urban OutFitters, Dollar General, and more. 

The Evolution of Retail

Both businesses and consumers are eager for life to return to normal. Retail has had to adapt to the ever-changing needs of consumers during the pandemic, adapting experiential models and enhancing their omnichannel approaches. Retail’s evolution will likely continue for the long-run, but this past year has certainly tested their limits and sparked numerous opportunities for reinvention. 

“The ripple effects of the pandemic will be felt for some time and serve as a powerful illustration of the need for consumer-facing companies to be agile, resilient, and responsive to change. Born out of disaster and necessity comes opportunity; the pandemic has sparked a new wave of innovation,” said Oliver Wright, Senior Managing Director at consulting firm, Accenture.  

Source: Retail is OK – Retail Dive

Photo Credit: Retail is OK – Retail Dive

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Article Topics: Growth | Industry Outlook | Retail

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