NRF: 54% of Retailers to Open Traditional Stores This Year

BY Kathy Crosett
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If you’re selling media space and services to retailers, the most recent reports might leave you feeling a bit spooked. Companies continue to close stores and the industry is shifting. More competitors are starting up online before they venture into the bricks and mortar space. A new Forrester Research report conducted for National Retail Federation shows there’s reason for optimism in the retail sector.

Advertising Outlook for Retailers

For one thing, retailers continue to advertise. In fact, at least 28% will boost TV advertising for 2019, compared to their 2018 spending levels. Retailers are also investing in more connected TV advertising. Over 33% will spend the same as they did on connected TV last year. Another 29% will spend more.

Retailers don’t stop their marketing efforts at TV, though. Social media remains an important channel for these businesses. The Forrester Research findings are echoed by the CMO Survey released by Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business earlier this year. In the Duke Univeristy report, retailers noted spending about 25% of their marketing budgets on social media. Retailers use social media to build brand awareness (23%), introduce new products and services (22%), and promote the brand through contests and coupons (19%).

Online and Traditional Store Growth

Earlier this year, the NRF reported that retail sales should increase by at least 3.8% and could rise 4.4% in 2019. That growth rate will bring spending levels, excluding car dealers, gas stations and restaurants, to $3.84 trillion. Keep in mind that the anticipated 10–12% increase in online sales will amount to $682.8 billion.

Your clients are well aware of the online activity. In fact, retailers that participated in the Duke University study reported that 30% of their revenue comes from online activity. They also point out that “e‑commerce sites are becoming more expensive to operate.” That reality may be why 54% of retailers plan to open traditional stores this year.

With so many retailers operating in the omni-​channel environment, they need a clear plan for how to target consumers in all media spaces. Talk with them about traditional ad campaigns for 2019. Then, run a Digital Audit on their online advertising efforts and discuss how to improve their results. The Digital Audit is available at AdMall from SalesFuel​.com.