“While the retail mail industry has seen a slight recovery and shopping centre week on week footfall saw a slight increase in mid May, there is still a long way to go with centres aiming to improve revenues from commercialisation,” says Paul Clifford of Space to trade. “We are currently seeing an increase in centres looking to enhance their mall retail and promotions by engaging with agencies and outsourcing aspects of their commercialisation, which is good news for the mall retail industry.”
Centres are being ever more selective about the promotions and retailers on the mall that they invite into their centres; ensuring that they add to the customer experience, increase footfall and compliment their current offering. Centre management teams are also acutely aware of how certain customer acquisition promotions can effect customer perceptions of the centre, which means that these companies need to offer something different if they want to have a mall presence. Themed markets are becoming ever more popular and professional looking; automotive promotions are still going strong. Beauty bars and other service related offers are still growing and remain popular with customers.
A great example of something different is a forthcoming Mini promotion. Mini is scheduled to exhibit a shipping container containing two Minis at The Vancouver Quarter in King’s Lynn at the end of June to acquire new customer leads and raise its brand profile in Norfolk.
Retailers in the south of the country are also being selective about bookings and we are seeing a turnaround from the previous long term retailers looking for a shorter period of occupancy. This is good news as it gives both the centre management team and the trader time to analyse and ensure that it’s the right place for both the centre and the retailer. While in Scotland, retailers are making block bookings into 2017 to avoid disappointment. It’s worth noting that Scotland saw the highest week on week increase in footfall during May 2016.