Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Shopping Mall Observations

I was in the Rideau Center this past weekend and was astounded by how different the world has become in the past 5 years.  Walking around the mall, the amount of speciality stores I saw shocked me - LaCoste, Banana Republic, Lululemon, or Michael Kors.  I remember when the biggest and most popular store in the mall was GAP and the only "designer" stores were Harry Rosen, Guess and Le Chateau. 

I noticed in the La Senza store, every Christmas they put out flannel pyjamas at the front of the store and usually have these big discounts on the pyjames. This year, there were very few pairs of flannel pjs and were replaced by fancy undergarments. This was another weird citing at the mall.  FYI - I wasn't comfortable buying my mom's gift at La Senza anymore, as flannel pjs are fine, that other stuff is just weird for your mom!

I started to ponder this, when my wife was busy Christmas shopping.  It then dawned on me, the biggest clothes buying age group is 15 to 30, meaning Generation Y (Echo Boomers) are enmass entering this age group.  They are individualistic and are defined as the "now" generation, not enjoying the benefits of delayed gratitude (does anyone really enjoy delayed gratitude?). 

Baby boomers who dominated the clothing market previously are not as individualistic and are looking for quality at a good price.  Unlike their children, boomers will sacrifice style for substance and cost.  The difference in the stores and prices was shocking to me.  Gone are the days of the large retailers with many sizes of the same shirt, here are the days of designers, less selection and higher prices.

One last antedoct from my day of shopping, I went into a "new retailer" in the mall and looked at a pair of shoes for my wife.  They were pretty cool and the sales girl happened to be wearing them.  I asked her the normal questions about comfort, style, etc.  It was quite normal, until the sales professional said to me, "These are great as they only come in one size run, they are so exclusive!".

I thought about that as I left (without the shoes, sorry honey, I promise I will get you something cool for Christmas), I can remember working in retail clothing stores to pay for my education and one of the most important things, heading into Christmas was overstocking the warehouse with extra sizes, so you could accomodate the hordes of Christmas buyers.

Strange stuff happening in the shopping mall and it is all due to the changing demographics.  Keep watch, it will continue happening!

1 comment:

  1. Now a days there are so many newly shopping malls opened in my town. Me and my family visited these shopping malls on every Sunday. The shopping malls is a great way for earning money for the real estate investor.

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