Deloitte: Future is Coming… Malls Welcomed Back in NJ, With Limits… Remember Fitting Rooms? Tech Tosses Them

DMM Retail Industry e-News Issue #185

Deloitte: Despite Disease, Don’t Despair, Drive Destiny

Retail FuturePeople’s need for things and stuff hasn’t, and won’t, change. That is certain. How they get it could, and that’s where the creative retailers come in. Industry consultant Deloitte recently released a new report called “The future is coming…but still one day at a time,” which identifies seven trends for retailers and their vendors as the world recovers from COVID-19. As reported by HomeWorldBusiness.com, among them, “Commoditization and premiumization of products (As spending slackened, private brand sales increased, with price and supply chain constraints playing a key role in the growth as well as consumer trading of brand preference for product availability amid stockouts).” The report also cites the relevance of brick-and-mortar stores, as “circumstances prompted by the COVID-19 outbreak demonstrated the importance of the physical store, with many brands and retailers experiencing significant revenue loss from the temporary closure of bricks and mortar stores.”

Malls Welcomed Back in New Jersey, With Limits

Westfield Garden State PlazaWhat happens when one of the things you are known for disappears for a while and then returns? In the case of New Jersey, its malls re-opened (with apologies to Monty Python) to much rejoicing. Writing for Forbes.com, Senior Contributor Joan Verdon noted “malls are essential to [New Jersey residents’] pursuit of happiness.” NJ.com noted that though the shopping experience is a little different than it was pre-COVID, New Jerseyans couldn’t wait to get their pretzels and buy birthday gifts, not sit and gather on benches (many of which were removed) or hang out in kiddie play areas (which were closed). “The idea is not to get people to dwell. It’s more of a shopping trip, not to hang out for an extended period of time,” said Amy Bellisano, Manager of Woodbridge Center Mall.

Remember Fitting Rooms? Tech Tosses Them to the Trash

Fit MatchWe all know going to the malls is going to be different than it’s been in the past. We’ll see fewer opportunities to congregate in large crowds together, we probably won’t experience food vendors encouraging free samples as much, and trying on before we buy may be a thing of the past. It’s a good thing technology can help with the latter. CNBC recently profiled the company Fit:Match, which has developed 3D technology that takes less than a minute to scan the human body and decipher the person’s size. They’ve partnered with Brookfield Properties to do some field tests across the country. “We thought, just walking into a store to get fitted is boring. Think about fit on every level. Back-to-school for kids … retailers really struggle to get sizing right for kids,” said Patty Hirt, director of retail development at Brookfield Properties. For those wary about touching stuff in the new world, but really love being at the mall, the new technology offers contactless sizing for that extra-safe, um, touch.


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DMM e-News - Issue #185

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