You Can Have Your Retail Cake and Eat it Too

As retailers strive to create experiences for their customers in their brick and mortar stores, providing an eating outlet is becoming more and more the norm. The concept is not old: Macy’s opened its first restaurant inside a department store back in 1907. Nordstrom has cafes in all of its stores, and have now expanded the concept to “hubs” with a café, nail salons and personal shoppers. Wal-Mart has McDonald’s and Target has Starbucks and food courts. Whole Foods has always had a restaurant inside their stores. Retailers are watching their holiday traffic patterns as they decide what to offer in their stores next. October retail store traffic was down, as was restaurant traffic. The next possible phase for restaurants in retail? Using the food to reflect the branding of the retailer and make “Instagramable”, attractive and unique food items to promote the social media experience. Outdoor malls that are part of master planned residential communities are incorporating living, eating and shopping as an all-in-1 experience, allowing customers to eat, take their beverage out into the mall and shop while hearing live entertainment, making it a social experience.

Sources: fool.com, patch.com

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