This article was originally published in the Robin Report, Community Retail At Scale
It’s Not Just Good, It’s Good For Business
No one can argue with the benefits of scale when it comes to retail. Large-scale retailers provide deeper assortments at lower prices than their ma-and-pa competitors. But there’s a problem with all this scaling up. Mass-scale stores have become divorced from the communities where they sit. Most big-box retail stores look like they have been dropped in place by the mothership, and show little connection to where they are. All retail should have a sense of place. Now that we’re used to all those benefits of scale, customers yearn again for the relationships they had with their stores when they were owned and operated by their neighbors. Prediction: the next big wave in brick-and-mortar retail will combine the power of scale with the benefits of old-school mom-and-pop retail relationships. This is the transformation of big-box stores to come.
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