I was going through the newspapers the other day, reading what the press was saying about retail. It hit me then, for the first time ever, that Trump might actually be right about one thing: Fake News!!
Look, up here in Canada you’d have a better chance of finding a unicorn than finding someone who doesn’t think Trump is, well, not the greatest fit for the job. But his claim of Fake News, while likely mostly nonsense, rings true when it comes to how the media reports on retail.
If you believe everything the media says, then you believe that malls are dying everywhere, everyone is only shopping online, stores are closing and none are opening. To hear them tell the tale, Retail is going to ‘hell in hand basket’.
That’s Fake News at its finest.
Yes, retail is changing fast. Online sales are growing (but the truth is they are only somewhere between 6 and 10% of total retail sales). Some bad malls are struggling or closing. A large number of stores have closed.
But, that’s only a small part of the story.
Retail sales in most areas are actually up and have been for a couple of years. More stores are opening than are closing. Brick and mortar stores still represent 90% or more of all sales and aren’t going anywhere. In fact, consumers today are typically getting a better assortment of shopping experiences than ever before. They can get what they want how they want it. And good old fashioned stores are leading the way through innovation and progress.
The media’s perpetual bashing of retail damages consumer confidence. A more balanced view of what’s happening in retail is needed. I know that bad news sells faster than good news. But there’s an injustice being done to retailers and consumers alike when only one side of the story is told. It’s time to stop the Fake News when it comes to retail reporting.
Maybe we could get Trump to attack the retail media and hopefully get them to set the record straight.
Kevin Graff is the main guy behind all things Graff Retail. A renowned retail expert, Kevin is recognized in the retail industry as a speaker, author and expert trainer. Kevin's main passion is to help retailers drive staff performance.