FitForCommerce Releases the 2021 Global Mall Omnichannel Retail Index Findings: It’s 2021, but most malls are still living in the past

Benchmark study of global malls reveals that leading properties are not equipped to cater to today’s digital shopper.

FitForCommerce today announced the inaugural release of the 2021 Mall Omnichannel Retail Index findings. The Mall Omnichannel Retail Index, the first in the industry, benchmarks how 60 global malls across 28 countries embrace (or don’t embrace) digital transformation.

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Even before the pandemic, the traditional mall business model was hurting. Digital innovation is moving fast, consumers are catching on, but malls are slow to adapt. The pandemic brought new challenges to the mall landscape such as a dramatic reduction in foot traffic and sales, increased digital sales and more demanding customers. Retailers and brands that have been adding more digital and omnichannel capabilities and services over the past years, accelerated these efforts in order to meet customer demands. Malls, however, don’t seem to have followed suit – and as a result, malls (and their tenants) are struggling.

“The pandemic has only advanced the demise of those malls that were already struggling. We live in an age where technology is driving innovation and consumer behavior. Malls have been slow to adapt and evolve to the new merged digital and physical reality. We needed to understand the industry position on digital technology and we therefore launched the first global Mall Omnichannel Retail Index. The findings reveal that most malls are far from delivering on what we deem table stakes functionality and best practices, with significant room for improvement.” said Gary Burrows, Managing Director of Malls and Meeting Places at FitForCommerce.

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The Mall Omnichannel Retail Index report outlines high-level findings from the benchmark study. Some of the key findings include:

  • Only 12% of mall online parking maps highlight locations for Click & Collect/Curbside pickup (FitForCommerce’s annual Omnichannel Retail Index shows retailer adoption of Click & Collect to be 95% and Curbside to be 69%)
  • Though 100% have a presence on the web, only 38% have a mobile app
  • Only 3 malls in total offer store reservation or store spot holder technologies

The Mall Omnichannel Retail Index confirms the unfortunate reality that most malls have under-invested in digital and omnichannel capabilities. There remains enormous opportunity for improvement which malls must prioritize to remain viable and competitive.

Mall operators and owners can leverage the Mall Omnichannel Retail Index to measure how their digital capabilities compare to the industry and serve as a guide to help build a digital transformation roadmap.

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FitForCommerceNewsOmnichannel Retail IndexThe Mall Omnichannel Retail Index
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