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Retail will be a forever changing game, and in order to survive a brand needs to keep up on emerging trends, as it’s a well-known story for those retailers who do not.

Throughout time we have seen the rise and fall of many well-known retailers, companies so successful that no one thought they could fail. Unable to keep up with changes in the market, they lost their competitive edge in the world of retail. Some names that come to mind are Woolworth’s, Toys ‘R’ Us, Radio Shack, and most recently Payless ShoeSource.

Recently the shoe selling giant has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, which involves the shuttering of all 2,500 United States retail locations as well as its online business. International locations, mainly in Latin America, will continue to operate as usual. These recent developments seemingly will not come as a surprise to someone to keeping a watchful eye on the market as evidenced by other companies filing bankruptcies in recent years.

Other retail giants can pull a few lessons from this tragic end and apply those observations to their operational procedures.  The rise of online shopping, whether it be through a website or app, has made it critical for retailers to evolve and embrace these current trends. Brands also need to remain as relevant as they possibly can. Some companies have done this by interacting with consumers on social media such as Twitter or Instagram where they can showcase new potential products and receive feedback in real time.

Retailers will need to ensure they do not over-populate an area with brick and mortar locations. With the continued ease of shopping online, this will more often than not be the preferred method of shopping. That means in urban markets brands can strategically establish a few locations in order to serve their customers without oversaturating the market.

Retail will be a forever changing game, and in order to survive a brand needs to keep up on emerging trends, as it’s a well known story for those retailers who do not.

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Carolyn SchmidA Source No Longer

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