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ICSC RECon 2019: Looking Ahead

5 minute read - Posted by Daniel Wagstaff on May 6, 2019 11:26:10 AM

Retail real estate—one of the biggest and most diverse sectors of the commercial property industry—has been facing major changes in the past couple of decades. The demand for retail properties and interest for investing in this sector are significantly increasing, and with this increase come many benefits, but also challenges for industry professionals. We are no longer living in the initial stages of retail but are far from it. To stand out you must blend customer behavior with the goals and objectives of businesses relies on a wide array of both internal and external factors.

Driven by technological advancements and an increasing demand for retail stores and centers that offer a highly personalized experience, but also by the emerging of new retail businesses, the industry and its key actors are constantly under evaluation. Customers, competitors, industry regulators, or simply by the flow of retail changes and the keen need for boosting marketing ROI are all working to address the way retail lives up to the challenge of our fast-paced world.

But what does that mean for retail real estate, how can you find out more about new developments, what lies ahead for this sector?

Current Trends in the Retail Real Estate Industry

In the Q1 of 2016, $33 billion was invested into retail real estate globally, and the number continued increasing until 2019. As more and more shopping centers are being developed, a significant part of those investments go into modernizing retail businesses, and aligning them with current trends and customer needs. And with online retail gaining so much attention from customers due to its more flexible nature, shopping centers need to tailor their services in order to reach customers regardless of what competitors have to offer.

Nowadays, multi-generational shopping behavior has influenced the shopper journey tremendously, making businesses aware of customer demand not as a necessity for products and services, but as a personalized relationship between people and brand. In order to cater to those needs, businesses need to offer spaces that are highly intuitive, attune with our technologically-driven world, but also one step ahead of competitors.

With the goods becoming less important, and the emphasis being placed on the experience factor, retailers are finding more and more ways of progressing towards a future revolving around the customer, thus making use of external technologies and solutions that the customer is already familiar with.

Further, we are going to discuss a key event in the retail real estate industry and how attending it can benefit retailers, property managers, marketers, and any other professionals interested in retail real estate.

The International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) 2019 RECon

When it comes to retail real estate, understanding the dynamics of the market and being prepared for whatever shifts, changes, and developments, is mandatory for the overall success of your retail property business. One of the best methods for staying up-to-date with sector developments, meeting industry deciders, and getting information which you can use to draft and implement your retail strategies, is to attend events that deal with aspects that interest all retailers.

With an emphasis on solutions that are bringing less tradition and more innovation to the retail real estate industry, this year’s ICSC RECon will take place at the Las Vegas Convention Center, between 19 and 22 May 2019.

Key Benefits of Attending RECon

  • Connecting with emerging retailers
  • Connecting with tech pioneers
  • Finding out the latest trends from industry leaders
  • Connecting with decision makers
  • Expanding your network and portfolio
  • Enhancing your programming and technological skills

Debating topics such as retail in the age of experience, crafting restaurant deals, redeveloping shopping centers, the increasing demand for rapid delivery, strategic planning and project development, negotiating rent reductions, and many others, RECon is a must for everyone interested in the fruitful development of their retail businesses.

The transitions between various sectors of the retail industry, such as stationary and online retail need to be reconciled in accordance with industry trends and customer needs. Therefore attending RECon and other similar events will help you better grasp how to effortlessly make that happen. By listening to keynote speakers, connecting with other retailers, and hearing from marketers, you will be able to see what sectors are more sought by customers, what might be missing from your retail business, and how to improve customer loyalty.

What Will the Future Hold in Store for Retail Real Estate?

As previously mentioned, placing an emphasis on experience rather than on the product is a significant trend in the retail industry, especially for retail real estate, since this sector is in charge of making shopping centers and stores align with this idea. As a retail real estate professional, being up-to-date not just with industry trends, but also with customer needs—and most importantly, being one step ahead when it comes to planning and strategizing—will significantly improve the overall success of your endeavors.

Professionals from all industries ask themselves every year what the future has in store for their industry and how will they manage to align themselves with new technologies, modern solutions, and audience demands. In the world of retail, those questions need to be answered with precision and swiftness, as it takes seconds for a customer to decide in favor of a competitor. Also, the timeframe for drafting and implementing strategies based on new technologies depends on your understanding of those technologies. Therefore, staying informed and making plans for the future means being one step closer to success.

Future Retail Real Estate Trends

The general idea of merging the digital and physical retail environments needs to be further analyzed and dissected into components, as more and more technologies are providing us with responses to customer demands. Nowadays, when everyone is running from one place to the other, and struggling to make time for their shopping experiences, swiftness and a fully-featured experience are the winning combination.

Integrating modern delivery solutions with your retail shopping center or store does not mean losing the battle with e-commerce, but offering your customers the relationship they were always looking for. Retails professionals who will know how to harvest this knowledge and implement it into methodically drafted plans and strategies will significantly improve their odds at becoming an industry leader.

Knowing How to Connect Different Asset Categories with Your Retail Business

Integration is becoming less than just a word describing a process, and more of a movement towards the perfectly balanced modern life. Understanding that the shopping experience needs to be integrated with other aspects of a customer’s life, such as their work or social activities can be a rewarding challenge. By connecting different kind of asset categories and transforming your retail business into a place of innovative solutions and services seamlessly integrated with the day-to-day, you will reach more customers, increase ROI, and raise brand awareness.

Regardless on which side of the shopper journey you situate yourself, making the most of the experience will allow you to perfect your professional abilities, therefore being one step closer to achieving your goals and objectives. Attending events such as ICSC RECon, and being knowledgeable towards current and future industry trends will help you craft efficient plans and implement strategies that assure the success of your retail business.