It’s becoming increasingly difficult for big-box stores to compete with online sellers. That’s become extremely apparent by the number of store closure announcements that took place in 2017 — and they’re continuing this year.
According to CNBC, more than 70 million square feet of retail space will close this year as a result of pressures from online retail giants such as Amazon.
This map from CNBC gives a sense of just how drastic these store closures really are. As you can see, the East and West Coasts will be especially hard hit, with stores such as Claire’s, JCPenney, Kmart and many others closing their doors.
Visit CNBC to view an interactive version of the map and get a closer look at which stores are closing in your area.
All of the brick-and-mortar locations going out of business is giving some retailers an opportunity to focus on their online presence. For example, JCPenney is working to become more of a destination for shoppers by focusing on making the in-store shopping experience as appealing as possible (pending location cutbacks).
“During the year, it became evident the stores that could fully execute the company’s growth initiatives of beauty, home refresh and special sizes generated significantly higher sales, and a more vibrant in-store shopping environment,” Marvin Ellison, chairman and chief executive officer of JCPenney, said in a press release.
For other retailers, the future doesn’t look quite as bright. American Apparel has permanently closed all of its locations and the same is true for Toys ‘R Us, which filed for bankruptcy and announced that all stores will close in 2018.
What’s To Blame For Store Closures?
Online shopping through retailers such as Amazon has made never visiting the inside of a store a real possibility, and it’s increasingly becoming the way people like to shop for groceries, clothing and more. Amazon even has a plant store!
Competition For Amazon
While this does mean many stores have had to close, it doesn’t mean retailers are completely giving up. Stores such as Walmart and Target are making shopping more convenient by offering delivery and pick-up options, for example.
Google also just partnered with Walmart, Target and Costco to direct online traffic to those stores. Now, when you type “where can I buy …” into Google, your options won’t include Amazon products. Instead, shopping options from Google’s partner stores will be highlighted.
And while we wait for the “Amazon-vs.-every-other-retailer” showdown dust to settle, you may want to click around on the map above to find out which stores near you are closing. Be sure to take advantage of any sales as these stores try to get rid of inventory!