Every year, online retailers has been reporting increasing sales while more n more shopping centers in the United States and other countries are closing up and experts are trying to convince the people, it’s a global phenomina. But, is really the e-commerce killing the shopping mall culture? Many Cities around the world like Dubai prove that the malls are still very powerful.
A decade ago, only a few people purchased things online and e-commerce was limited to only a small fraction of merchandise. Today, we often buy all our needs like apparels, baby products, gifts, electronics, and furniture online. And with home deliveries offered by most of the large online retailers, getting a new phone or a car has become really very easy. We can even purchase our food online. Sometime we even buy our new home with a few clicks of the mouse. In many parts of Europe and the United States, shopping malls are closing doors, while brick and mortar stores create websites where the customer can have the exact same shopping experience, or almost. The growth of online sales doesn’t necessarily mean decrease in traditional sales.
In fact, in some parts of the world, it’s just the opposite. Recently, ‘The Dubai Mall’, the largest shopping mall in the world, was also the most-visited retail destination, for the year 2013, with 75 million visitors, which means about 6.25 million visitors every month. In comparison, other leading shopping centers around the world welcomed fewer shoppers during the last year. And in addition, according some recent report, there was a 26 % increase in the sales of 1200 shops in the Dubai Mall.
So, can we say that e-commerce is responsible for the decline of the shopping malls around the world, especially considering constantly increasing online sales in Dubai? The truth is e-commerce is still not that big event to affect traditional sales in strong markets.
According to some survey, the most active shoppers are those aged 18 to 35-40. And they visit retailers online and in person. And a large percentage of people spend more than an hour looking at the retail websites a day, but not only to shop.
In fact many people prefer to research online for products and brands and then go to the store and buy whatever they have chosen. People spend so much time on the internet that when it comes to shopping, they considerate a form of entertainment. For them shopping is mostly a social experience, associated with spending time with their friends, sharing your thoughts and interests with people close to you? And always shopping doesn’t mean only buying items you need. It is also associated with having a nice chat with your friend over a cup of coffee and spending time together.
The shopping mall culture is still very much alive in many cities like Dubai across the world. And by providing all the services and products, all entertainment and fun activities, Mall is an essential part of the social life where you can also spend some leisure time with your family and or friends, pretty expensive though.