Despite All The Gloomy Stories, U.S. Bricks and Mortar Retail Growing

August 31, 2017 by Dave Haynes

If your company chases business in retail, you’ll know it’s a tough slog for a bunch of reasons, and you’ll also have heard and read no end of stories about how brick and mortar retail is in a death spiral.

Turns out that’s not really true.

The National Retail Federation says the industry may indeed be evolving, but it’s also growing. The NRF in a post on its own site notes new reporting from the research firm IHL Group that shows a net increase in store openings of more than 4,000 in 2017. In fact, says the NRF, for each company closing a store, 2.7 companies are opening stores.

The NRF, which of course has reasons to paint a rosy picture of the industry it represents, nonetheless also has other data to back up the assertion. “The most recent retail sales figures released by the Census Bureau were up a robust 4.2 percent year-on-year in July,” the NRF story notes. “Every month this year has seen a steady increase in sales over the same period last year.”

There is more data in this recent webinar, called Debunking the Retail Apocalypse.

Certainly, the US in particular is insanely oversupplied with commercial retail space. And there are certainly retailers cratering. But for solutions providers going after that vertical market, the oft-seen media doom and gloom about retail can benefit from some perspective, like real numbers.


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