Bricks to clicks

Today debate is raging over the future of traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ stores in the face of the challenges posed by online retailing. Consumers have come to demand retail opportunities that seamlessly cross all spheres of their lives – anywhere, anytime. In the virtual world shoppers access thousands of merchant sites, comparing prices and making purchases without leaving home or work. And yet people still love to look and to browse, promenade and socialise in shopping spaces.

Perhaps, in the future, shops will be more like art galleries, museums or libraries, where customers
visit carefully curated spaces to participate in customised retail experiences tailor-made to suit
their needs, with experts on-hand to give advice and guide their purchases – much as they did in the palace emporiums of the past.

But there is still something special about the time-honoured ritual of a day in town — getting
dressed up, meeting friends for lunch and a movie, buying school clothes, or even
paying a visit to Santa.