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Author Topic: Reinventing the brick and mortar retail industry  (Read 917 times)
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Pikapower
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« on: May 16, 2017, 01:15:37 PM »

I was just thinking about with many of those so called "mall stores" like Aeropostale, Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle Outfitters, Justice, Clare's, GNC, just to name a few that have be closing stores like crazy made me wonder, what if you were the head of a "mall store" retail chain what wold you do other than try to reopen stores that have closed to make malls great again?
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« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2017, 01:36:32 PM »

I would give people only two options: shop in store, or purchase online and pick up in store.
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« Reply #2 on: May 16, 2017, 01:40:12 PM »

I would give people only two options: shop in store, or purchase online and pick up in store.

That might work, people can make a purchase online and have their order either shipped to their home or reserve it for pick up at the store.
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« Reply #3 on: May 16, 2017, 01:46:30 PM »

My feeling is that IF your brick-and-mortar store can survive, eventually the cost of
shipping is going to catch-up to Amazon and Walmart, and the sweet deals which make
it nearly cost-free to ship to your home will have to end.  Then brick-and-mortar stores
may experience a revival.

Aside from that, make malls a destination with entertainment, concerts, amusement parks, etc.  So far as I know Mall of America is still hanging-in there due to all of these factors.
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Pikapower
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« Reply #4 on: May 16, 2017, 03:30:46 PM »

Anyone got any ideas on how a specific "mall store" chain can make itself great again?
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« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2017, 07:50:43 PM »

Anyone got any ideas on how a specific "mall store" chain can make itself great again?

In the case of places like Claire's or Hot Topic, maybe they should offer free ear piercings with a purchase of $50 or more.
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« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2017, 04:47:38 AM »

As for Justice, maybe they should bring back Brothers and display both boys and girls clothes in the front and have posters advertising that they have boys and girls clothes and not just girls clothes.
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« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 07:13:35 AM »

Anyone got any ideas on how a specific "mall store" chain can make itself great again?

In the case of places like Claire's or Hot Topic, maybe they should offer free ear piercings with a purchase of $50 or more.

Have you been in one of those recently?  I took my daughter to get my ears pierced a couple of years ago.  The price of a set of piercing studs is up there.

Come to think of it, I think Claire's pierces for free anyway as long as you buy the studs.
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« Reply #8 on: May 19, 2017, 12:15:28 PM »

I think most places are like that - buy the stud and get the piercing free. I know it's like that at Piercing Pagoda and at Walmart.

Story time. I got mine done at Walmart. Walmart is the only place I got the piercings done an didn't have any problems. I got my first ear piercing in 93 at a jewelry kiosk at the now demolished Bristol Center Mall in Bristol, CT. Had no problems. The following year the jewelry kiosk had closed and I got a 2nd hole in my ear at a nail salon in the mall called Joy of Nails. With in a coupe months it got stuck inside my ear and I had to go to a walk-in clinic to get it cut out. I didn't have any for a few years. I had a new hole sometime in high school and still had problems. I think I finally bought a do it your self piercing kit and did it myself. In 2006 I went to Walmart and got a second whole in my left ear and my first hole in my right ear. No problems. These days I only wear one in my left ear and one in my right.
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« Reply #9 on: May 19, 2017, 01:36:02 PM »

A follow up to my last post on how I've said that Justice should bring back boys clothes, as that not only sell boys clothes at some Justice store, but also open some stand alone Brothers stores in addition to the co-branded Justice & Brothers stores.
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« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2017, 05:54:32 PM »

They should bring back the birthday party rooms and indoor playgrounds (similar to the playgorunds at a McDonald's PlayPlace) in Toys "R" Us. A few locations had them when they were remodeled to the Geoffrey's Toys "R" Us prototypes in the early-mid-2000s (including the location in my area).

I think Toys "R" Us should also continue to bring in customers for such activities as building free LEGO sets on the weekends. I went to Toys "R" Us on a weekend once, and the customers (and their kids) were building LEGO police cars. I was one of the few customers there that day, and I also built the police car set, which came with an instruction sheet and a plastic zipper bag. I still have my LEGO set I built from that day. LEGO needs to continue to do this activity with Toys "R" Us on weekends. It's fun!
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« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2017, 01:21:32 PM »

They should bring back the birthday party rooms and indoor playgrounds (similar to the playgorunds at a McDonald's PlayPlace) in Toys "R" Us. A few locations had them when they were remodeled to the Geoffrey's Toys "R" Us prototypes in the early-mid-2000s (including the location in my area).

I think Toys "R" Us should also continue to bring in customers for such activities as building free LEGO sets on the weekends. I went to Toys "R" Us on a weekend once, and the customers (and their kids) were building LEGO police cars. I was one of the few customers there that day, and I also built the police car set, which came with an instruction sheet and a plastic zipper bag. I still have my LEGO set I built from that day. LEGO needs to continue to do this activity with Toys "R" Us on weekends. It's fun!

I also think that Toys "R" Us should have an event held at select stores a couple weekends a month where kids can do Lego models, stuffed animals (a la Build-A-Bear Workshop), arts and crafts activities as well have birthday party rooms for kids birthday parties and also bring back the Kids "R" Us clothing store chain.
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Pikapower
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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2017, 04:47:57 AM »

I think that maybe malls should consider putting thrift stores to replace anchor stores like Sears, JCPenney, and Macy's.
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« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2017, 06:11:41 PM »

I think that maybe malls should consider putting thrift stores to replace anchor stores like Sears, JCPenney, and Macy's.
And entertainment venues, like value movie theaters that show second run films and sell movie tickets for $3.00 a piece.

Another idea would be to open fitness centers, martial arts centers, and satellite college campuses for various universities, technical colleges, colleges of nursing and community colleges inside many of the mall's empty storefronts.

They could also place flea markets inside some of the larger spaces.

They could also open a live TV studio inside the mall, like they did in Beaumont and Midland, Texas.

They could open Big Lots, Family Dollar and Dollar General stores inside the mall.

They could also open a hospital/medical center inside the mall.

They could open a branch of the YMCA, YWCA, The Salvation Army or the Boys & Girls Club inside one of the mall's larger anchor stores.


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« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2017, 10:01:39 PM »

There was an Ocean State Job Lot (similar to Big Lots, but one rung lower) at the now demolished Mall at Bristol Centre in downtown Bristol, CT. It opened in 93 in the old Sage Allen space. (Hartford based dept store). Problem was people would shop there but most would not venture into the mall to visit the few retailers that were in the mall. The Salvation Army had had a store there too for a few years. The moved there after several fires were set on their loading dock in their previous location off of Route 6 (the main commercial strip). Eventually they would move to Route 6 next to Sears Appliance and Hardware. They have since closed and the space along with Sears is now Hobby Lobby. More about the mall. After the Salvation Army Store closed a new "junk" store opened that sold a little bit of everything. Everything was like 87 cents.

They had a flea market in this mall too. 2 stores. They called it Bristol Centre Mall Market. The flea market moved into the mall after there space in New Britain was demolished for a Shaw's Supermarket. They eventually consolidated into one store which was still operating in 2006 when the mall "officially" closed. One of the spots (with an outside entrance) that had been the flea market became Golden Wok Buffet.  It then became Jumbo Buffet and XO-Grand Buffet. The last Chinese Place that was there didn't even operate it as a buffet. Chopsticks Chinese kitchen relocated there after they lost their previous location on nearby South Street to a non-profit organization They are now located elsewhere on North Main Street. The Family Center for Boys and Girls had space there for a teen center in the former Showcase Cards and Gift Shop. (Showcase was part of Carlton Cards). Political Candidates used space there for their offices during election season. They also had the Bristol Art League there and a Sports Hall of Fame Place.

Another close-out chain called Railroad Salvage took the former Sears Outlet Space in the mid 1990s. (1996 maybe)? They moved there from Webster Plaza in Berlin. They were only at the mall for 2 years at the most. They blamed the city of Bristol for their failure. They weren't allowed to have a sign on the building facing North Main Street. They only had one sign on their building that faced the Discount Food Outlet. They moved into the old AMES in Centennial Plaza in Meriden. A site that is still vacant til this day.

After Railroad Salvage went out the space was used twice for the Bristol Chamber of Commerce Home and Business Show. Normally held at Bristol Eastern High School they held it in the old Sears Space at the mall because the school was undergoing renovations.
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« Reply #15 on: June 14, 2017, 01:11:49 AM »

They relocated the Joplin High School 11th and 12th grade classes to a temporary location at a former Venture/Shopko store at Northpark Mall for the 2011-2012 to 2014-2015 school year following the 2011 Joplin tornado while a new high school was being built. Now that Joplin High School is in a new building as of 2014, Dunham's Sports has opened in that space in May 2016.
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« Reply #16 on: June 14, 2017, 05:18:09 AM »

I think that maybe malls should consider putting thrift stores to replace anchor stores like Sears, JCPenney, and Macy's.
And entertainment venues, like value movie theaters that show second run films and sell movie tickets for $3.00 a piece.

Another idea would be to open fitness centers, martial arts centers, and satellite college campuses for various universities, technical colleges, colleges of nursing and community colleges inside many of the mall's empty storefronts.

They could also place flea markets inside some of the larger spaces.

They could also open a live TV studio inside the mall, like they did in Beaumont and Midland, Texas.

They could open Big Lots, Family Dollar and Dollar General stores inside the mall.

They could also open a hospital/medical center inside the mall.

They could open a branch of the YMCA, YWCA, The Salvation Army or the Boys & Girls Club inside one of the mall's larger anchor stores.




What about an event center inside one of the mall's larger anchor stores for special events like concerts, banquets, and small conventions?
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« Reply #17 on: June 14, 2017, 02:08:47 PM »

I think that maybe malls should consider putting thrift stores to replace anchor stores like Sears, JCPenney, and Macy's.
And entertainment venues, like value movie theaters that show second run films and sell movie tickets for $3.00 a piece.

Another idea would be to open fitness centers, martial arts centers, and satellite college campuses for various universities, technical colleges, colleges of nursing and community colleges inside many of the mall's empty storefronts.

They could also place flea markets inside some of the larger spaces.

They could also open a live TV studio inside the mall, like they did in Beaumont and Midland, Texas.

They could open Big Lots, Family Dollar and Dollar General stores inside the mall.

They could also open a hospital/medical center inside the mall.

They could open a branch of the YMCA, YWCA, The Salvation Army or the Boys & Girls Club inside one of the mall's larger anchor stores.




What about an event center inside one of the mall's larger anchor stores for special events like concerts, banquets, and small conventions?

In this area, a couple things:

One mall now has an aquarium in part of it.
Another mall has one of those bowling alley/party places (Lucky Strike), and also converted the older set of theaters into a kids play place.

Seems like lots of things that could use the spaces in a variety of combinations, while still allowing some stores that wish to remain to do so (and potentially gain customers from the other items in the facility).
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« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2017, 03:24:02 PM »

A little bit more about the old Mall at Bristol Centre which I brought up. The city of Bristol had hoped that Tunxis Community College would open a satellite campus at the mall and had hoped that would spur interest into the mall by way of a book store, coffee shop, and other place college students like to patronize. That never came to fruition. Tunxis ended up opening a satellite campus in the former Auto Zone store in the North Side Square plaza further up North Main Street from the mall.

After an August 2002 trip to Baltimore for a Writing Convention, I came back home to Bristol with a grand idea for the mall. Of course no one gives a s h i t what a 20 year old kid thinks. (Yeah that's how young I was). In the Inner Harbor area of Baltimore there is an area with many restaurants, bars, night clubs, and stores. Plus an aquarium. That is what I envision for The Mall at Bristol Centre.

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« Reply #19 on: June 14, 2017, 05:15:08 PM »

I think that it's time that some mall-based retailers like Aeropostale, Justice, Gymboree, and many more should consider selling their products in stores like Target and Walmart through a licensing agreement of some sorts to increase sales of their brands in addition to selling their products on their respective websites.
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« Reply #20 on: June 16, 2017, 01:19:41 AM »

I really REALLY hope that the national, regional and local brick-and-mortar retailers can strike the right balance with e-commerce once the retail apocalypse ends. I'm talking about "Operation Phoenix" for brick-and-mortar. We can not bring dead retail back, but we can start our own businesses, hoping they'll become the next big thing. A retail renaissance holds so much promise for the future of retail. There might be some people out there with the next big thing in retail, and we don't know about it yet!
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« Reply #21 on: June 27, 2017, 02:21:32 PM »

I could think of two mall based stores that should bring back some brand to extend their sales, Justice should bring back its Brothers boys clothing brand and American Eagle should bring back their 77 Kids clothing brand.
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« Reply #22 on: June 27, 2017, 02:32:33 PM »

I could think of two mall based stores that should bring back some brand to extend their sales, Justice should bring back its Brothers boys clothing brand and American Eagle should bring back their 77 Kids clothing brand.

Except Justice is on the chopping block.
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« Reply #23 on: June 27, 2017, 03:04:11 PM »

I could think of two mall based stores that should bring back some brand to extend their sales, Justice should bring back its Brothers boys clothing brand and American Eagle should bring back their 77 Kids clothing brand.

Except Justice is on the chopping block.

If Justice had low prices everyday and not have so many 30%-50% sales, Justice would have more sales without people waiting for a sale or a money saving coupon and maybe people would be willing to settle to buy brand spanking new tween girls clothes from Justice in lieu of buying Justice branded clothing second hand from thrift stores and ebay for less than what Justice is asking for price wise.
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