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Press Release

From Shopping Center to Inclusive Community Space, America’s Malls Are Evolving…

March 22, 2018
"The narrative around the death of the mall is a myth and consumers don’t believe they are going to lose their local center anytime soon. Consumer demands and habits are evolving and malls are adapting to those new behaviors. The general sentiment is that malls will continue to play an important role but they will look different in the future, which is positive for communities across the country," said ICSC President and CEO Tom McGee.

Physical stores remain key to driving sales

  • About 165 million people went to the mall the past 3 months, over 60 million of which were millennials.
  • What’s more, 61% of adults say that physical stores will continue to capture a majority of the purchases they make.


Consumers are optimistic about the future

  • More than four-fifths (82%) of adults believe that shopping malls will still exist in the next 5-10 years, with nearly half (46%) saying they will look different from the current format.
    • Top reasons cited for believing malls will continue to be part of the retail landscape include:
      • Seeing efforts being made to update malls and improve the overall shopping experience
      • Seeing Amazon and other online retailers opening physical stores


Malls are evolving to meet consumer demands

  • Among shoppers who currently visit malls, the top 3 reasons for going include:
    • Visiting department stores
    • To browse
    • Visiting specialty shops
  • Shoppers cited the following as the top 3 reasons for going to malls 5-10 years ago:
    • To browse
    • Visiting department stores
    •  Better selection/variety of stores


Redefining the consumer’s experience at the mall

  • 70% of adults say that today, more than ever, shopping centers should focus on creating engaging experiences for consumers that combines shopping with entertainment and other services/activities.
    • Consumers believe the following offerings are best to incorporate into malls to enhance the overall experience:
      • Food halls/craft breweries, other unique eating/drinking establishments (54%)
      • Hosting local community events like farmers markets or craft fairs (50%)
      • Entertainment complexes (46%)

METHODOLOGY: The “ICSC 2018 Mall Survey” Survey was conducted by Opinion Research Corporation on behalf of ICSC from February 15-18, 2018. The survey represents a demographically representative U.S. sample of 1,009 adults of 18 years of age and older.