When I was in college, every single semester some Professor would ask us to write a research backed opinion piece on whether we thought brick and mortar shopping had a future or was a thing of the past. And every single semester was the same. Yes, online shopping is fantastic and gaining momentum… this was a long time ago when it was still gaining momentum not defining momentum. It was fun and fast and easy but we would always need stores. If for nothing else people would need to shop stores to decide what it was they wanted to buy online and in what size. We also argued that the store front needed to continue in order to define and disseminate brand identity. There would be no easier or more effective way to do that than in the store where everything from the furniture to the staff is chosen by the brand. And so they would remain.
I believed the gospel until I saw this headline…
“Sbarro, a Food-Court Staple, May File for Bankruptcy as Early as Next Week”
No big deal in and of itself but this on the heels of Quizno’s filing. Two points create a line and this one is heading South. Oh sure, all of the Quizno’s and Sbarro locations will be filled by something equally as greasy and convenient but it’s a sign. Mall culture is dying.