Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

CHICAGO-Whether they are trying to attract an underserved demographic, enter new geographic areas or are even entering the US for the first time, there are plenty of retailers looking to expand throughout the country. Neil Stern, a partner at locally based consulting firm McMillan Doolittle, detailed some of those stores during a speech here at the International Council of Shopping Centers’ Fall Conference that ended Wednesday.

“Innovation is the lifeblood of retailing, and it’s the reason why malls have second lives,” he said. New concepts are launched by companies to deal with the changing needs and desires of the consumer, based on everything from the ethnic makeup of the population to shifts in income groups. “The consumer is changing all of the time,” Stern said.

One of the ways established retailers deal with the changing customer base is by launching what Stern called “flanker brands,” or offshoots of their current chains that might have slightly different characteristics. Examples he gives are Soma, Chico’s FAS’ lingerie concept for women older than 35 years old; Made Well, a J. Crew chain geared only toward women; and Martin + Osa, American Eagle Outfitters’ vehicle to target an older consumer.

Retailers also have concepts specifically for certain age groups. American Girl, Build-A-Bear Workshop and Too Inc.’s Justice chain all cater to girls, while Gap’s Forthe & Town and Finish Line’s Paiva, are more geared toward women over 35, Stern said.

Some chains with mainly a suburban store base are trying to focus on a more urban customer like Home Depot, which is making inroads and New York City and Wal-Mart, which opened its first store in Chicago’s city limits this week. Meanwhile, other companies are opening temporary “pop-up” stores, such as Motorola, in Chicago’s Michigan Avenue, and J.C. Penney in New York’s Times Square. “We’re not sure if it’s a retailing phenomenon or a marketing phenomenon,” said Stern of the temporary stores.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 1 free article* every 30 days across the ALM subscription network
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

Dig Deeper



Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt
Live Chat

Copyright © 2021 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.