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#SHOPSMALL: 3 TRENDS IMPACTING THE FUTURE OF LOCAL SHOPPING


From buying fresh produce at the neighborhood farmers market to browsing local boutiques at the mall, shoppers are increasingly more conscious of where their dollars go. In fact, according to a recent study, over 82% of consumers say they’d spend more to support local businesses after the pandemic. This is likely music to your ears as a local business owner; there is no better time to leverage the support for “shopping small.”

As you prep for the busy holiday shopping season, read on for three trends to consider that impact the future of shopping local:

1. Collaboration Between Landlord and Tenant Shopping centers are at their best – and most vibrant – when occupancy is high, and the retail mix includes a variety of shops, eateries, and amenities for the local community to enjoy. Yet after what has been a difficult year for retail, many shopping centers are reconsidering the usual experiences and lease terms that have defined the industry for so long. Landlord and tenants alike have been forced to experiment with what works and what doesn’t, in order to keep the in-person shopping experience fresh and relevant for today’s consumers. Ultimately, this means that the relationship between landlord and tenant can no longer be looked at as purely transactional, based on multi-year terms and strict rent parameters. Instead, the shopping centers of the future must collaborate with tenants to succeed. As an independent shop or locally owned business, now is the time to leverage the evolving world of shopping centers, and partner with your landlord in unique ways. From one-day pop-up spaces to mini “store within a store” formats, there are so many flexible leasing options to explore.

2. The Growing Importance of Showing Up Online In the past, having a digital presence was something only big brands could afford to consider. Now, with everyone spending more and more time online, even small businesses need to think about how to extend their physical presence to include a footprint on the web. As a local brick-and-mortar shop, it may seem daunting to invest in an e-commerce platform or elaborate website, but there are plenty of free and low-cost opportunities to take advantage of in the digital world. For example, maintaining a presence on social media is an excellent way to engage and build community online, while also highlighting your products or services. Now is the time to invest your time and creativity into establishing your digital presence to stand out from competition and show off what makes your business so great. From email and social media marketing to even e-commerce and curbside-pickup integration, Centennial offers a multitude of digital support programs to help your business succeed.

3. In-Person Experiences Make a Comeback Despite the surge in online sales, don’t expect in-person shopping to go away anytime soon. Brick-and-mortar still remains the dominant retail sales channel, and is poised to make a big comeback as consumers crave a return to face-to-face interactions after months of social distancing. As a small business owner, it’s important to ask yourself: how does my physical retail space create real human interactions and connection? From training your store associates to provide personalized attention to each customer that walks through the door, to hosting experiential events and product demonstrations – reinventing your in-store experience will set you ahead of any competitors that focus solely on their e-commerce efforts. Ready to start your next #ShopLocal venture? Contact your Local Leasing and Business Development Rep today to get started! Contact Us

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Vernon Hills, IL 60061
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