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  • MAP Asia Pacific Ltd

Will Post-Pandemic Retail Be Online Or Offline?

There is much being made of the post-pandemic shift to e-commerce. However, not everyone believes that this consumer shift will push online shopping ahead of offline over the long run. In fact, some retail executives believe offline sales will slowly start to surge again.

“We believe the comeback [in] brick-and-mortar will be gradual,” said Fabrizio Freda, president and chief executive officer of the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc. to WWD. “Brick-and-mortar acceleration takes much more time because it takes not only the technical reopening but takes the consumer confidence to buy in brick-and-mortar… this will only come back more gradually.”

Retailers should expect a strong return to physical stores once governments have vaccinated tens of millions of consumers. Accordingly, in 2021, consumption patterns will change again, and new opportunities and movements will shape the collective identity.

Brands recognizing these shifts ahead of time will be better equipped to beat out competition from small-format stores, which have strengthened customer relationships by emulating the DTC model. Now, let’s look at some of the steps that retailers need to take to reinforce their weaker sales channels and keep customers returning to their stores.



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