Department stores are closing left and right, hundreds will lose their jobs and once again it looks like we are not prepared. I can’t help but shake my head in disbelieve. “Seriously, we didn’t see that coming?”
The internet has changed our lives -and our way of living- and I am the best example for it. I hate shopping, consider it a waste of time and prefer online shopping any day. I chose what I like in the comfort of my own home, enjoy a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, while I fill up my virtual cart. I don’t even have to dress or put lipstick on; I can sit there butt naked if I choose to do so, and nobody cares. I am still a valued customer, always will be.
I can get the same deals online and offline – and for me, that’s a no-brainer. The internet, computers, and technology have changed it all. Our old department stores got some serious online competition years ago, and they lost revenue and customers. It’s not our fault. We the consumer, we go where we get the most. In the end, there is no loyalty to a brand or a store; we all try to get the best quality, for the least amount of money.
I haven’t been at a mall in years; I don’t see sense in going there. What’s there to gain? I would spend most of the time searching for a salesclerk, and if I finally -by pure luck- would find one, it would be someone from a different department.
I don’t have to look at myself under the unforgiving neon light in a fitting room. I can try everything at my home, have days -sometimes even weeks to do so- and can return the items I don’t want without paying a penny.
That’s convenience, that’s a busy person’s dream. Now, give me a virtual grocery store, send some samples via drone right to my door, and I will be in paradise.
Did we really not see that coming? Are we really surprised that hundreds of department stores are closing? Times are changing, and we have to change with it, and if we don’t, we will fall more and more behind.
If a store doesn’t offer me something -anything- extraordinary, why would I go there? Park my car, greet me like a queen, offer me a beverage when I walk in, take my coat, shine my shoes, there are so many options to make a customer feel special. Having me chase down a sales clerk is not one of them. Having me wait in line in front of the only open register is not a solution either.
Have models walk the runway showing clothes for the average shopper. Treat the ordinary person extraordinary. Instead, they offered us empty stores with lousy customer service.
In the long run, most department stores will disappear, just like the coal miners and we should be busy making plans for the future. We need to stop crying over spilled milk. Technology is our future, education is the future. We should go with the time and plan ahead, we should have started it a long time ago.
And for heaven’s sake let us find some good use for all the empty buildings while we are at it, it can’t be that complicated.