Mid-Year Poll Showcases Retail Industry Strength 

Mid-Year Poll Showcases Retail Industry Strength 

General Business

On Jul 18, 2023
Three quarters (75.1%) of retail retailer managers responding to Levin Management Corporation (LMC)’s annual Mid-Year Retail Sentiment Survey reported their gross sales ranges match or are exceeding final 12 months presently. Reflecting sustained optimism, an similar share anticipates quantity to stay regular or decide up tempo by the rest of 2023.
“Retail has loved a few stellar years, and it’s constructive information that the primary half of 2023 has carried this momentum ahead for our tenants,” stated Matthew Ok. Harding, LMC’s chief govt officer, who added the matching/exceeding gross sales metric is among the many highest within the survey’s 12-year historical past. “Our ballot displays the {industry}’s profitable and ongoing growth in a post-pandemic period.”
The National Retail Federation holds the same view: It predicts retail gross sales will develop between 4% and 6% in 2023, and notes that the {industry}’s progress over the previous three years would have taken virtually a decade by pre-pandemic requirements. And whereas the primary half of 2023 noticed its share of retailer closures and Chapter 11 filings – notably by Bed, Bath & Beyond, Christmas Tree Shops, David’s Bridal and Party City – Harding famous that manufacturers operating their course is an age-old actuality of an {industry} the place change is a continuing.
“There is inevitable fluidity in retail tenancies; as some attain their finish, others are actively rethinking their footprints and looking for growth alternatives,” he stated. “The broader retail panorama exhibits a wholesome steadiness of established retailers adapting to fulfill altering client preferences and a brand new technology of manufacturers coming on-line. Those who’re doing nicely are targeted on customer support and comfort, and have embraced a contemporary strategy.”
Growth Strategies and Technology
LMC’s Mid-Year Retail Sentiment Survey checks in on expertise trending, gauging instruments which can be being leveraged to boost the client expertise and advertising.
This 12 months’s ballot mirrored the continued, widespread availability of a web-based possibility for buying items, scheduling appointments for providers or putting orders (provided by about 70% of respondents). “There’s been no wanting again for omnichannel,” stated LMC’s Melissa Sievwright, vp of selling.
In-store, the “prime three” instruments retailers have in place to reinforce customer support this 12 months embrace digital coupons, reductions and/or loyalty factors (provided by 66.2% of respondents); digital receipts (provided by 53.1%); and in-store, on-line ordering with free transport for out-of-stock gadgets (provided by 49.0%).
“We love seeing the prevalence of loyalty applications – a long-time idea that has come into the digital age,” Sievwright stated, noting that the advantages are nicely established. A current Nielsen Survey indicated 84% of shoppers usually tend to stay with a model that gives such a program.
E-mail, Social Media and SMS Marketing
Tech-centric advertising can be an necessary a part of the equation, with e-mail and social media remaining the 2 hottest instruments, employed by 74.4% and 71.9% of survey respondents, respectively. “Email and social media have been neck-in-neck because the go-to digital advertising channels all through our survey’s historical past, and each provide deep analytics that present perception on clients’ preferences and mindsets,” Sievwright stated. “With the explosion of influencer advertising, social media – particularly – is changing into much more dynamic.”
Of be aware, SMS (textual content messaging) is now being utilized by 58.1% of LMC survey contributors. “The use of textual content messaging has grown considerably over the previous six years; this knowledge level is up from 27.7% in 2015, with incremental progress annually in between,” Sievwright stated. “This is a logical development; Pew Research Center studies 85% of Americans personal a smartphone – up from simply 35% in 2011.”
Inflation, the Economy and Labor Check-in
Three of the retail {industry}’s well-documented ache factors – inflation, financial uncertainty and labor shortages – appear to be inflicting much less concern as in comparison with final 12 months for LMC survey respondents.

51.5% of contributors have raised – or anticipate elevating – costs in response to inflation in 2023, down from 60.8% within the mid-year 2022 survey.
40.7% say year-to-date financial shifts have impacted their efficiency outlook for the steadiness of the 12 months, down from 57.8% within the mid-year 2022 survey.
47.4% of these actively hiring are having a tougher time discovering certified job candidates 12 months over 12 months, down from 58.5% at mid-year 2022 and 79.1% at mid-year 2021.

“While these negative-leaning drivers are nonetheless a part of retailers’ day-to-day challenges, our tenants appear to be feeling much less volatility than final 12 months – which is substantiated by slowing inflation and inspiring mid-year financial studies,” Harding stated. “The labor scarcity seems to be enhancing, with our findings monitoring alongside knowledge from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Further, the proportion of our survey respondents who’re actively hiring – 50.9% in comparison with 71.1% final 12 months – doubtless means retailers are efficiently staffing up their shops.”
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