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“The place where old-fashioned malls are beating Amazon: Small-town America”

Small Malls vs Amazon Online Shopping

How is online shopping affecting regional malls? Online shopping has now become America’s favorite method of consumption, while older malls are finding themselves with deserted departments and leases to fill.

David Mitroff, Ph.D., was interviewed for a Washington Post article about how old-fashioned malls are beating Amazon in small towns across America.

“As revenue from online shopping climbs nationally — up 14.7 percent in the first quarter, compared with a year ago — regional malls like Pueblo’s can compete by tailoring themselves to their consumers, said David Mitroff of Piedmont Avenue Consulting in Oakland, Calif.

“People are ordering online, and that changes the whole shopping dynamic,” Mitroff said. “But now the mall has barber shops, gyms, local stores and other things you can’t just buy on Amazon. Or you can go see what they have. You can touch it.”


Civic pride and tradition also play a part. In some markets with older regional malls, people buy from a traditional anchor store such as a Sears because it’s American, Mitroff said.

“It reinforces ‘this is our mall, this is our city, let’s shop there,’ ” he said. “Especially if it’s the same price, why wouldn’t you do that? And if city officials say, ‘Do you understand that when you buy at J.C. Penney here, we actually get tax revenue off of that? But if you buy from Amazon, we don’t.’ ”

Shoppers in southern Colorado are often more willing to drive longer distances for their retail purchases, especially for ­durable goods such as refrigerators and other appliances, according to Chris Markuson, director of economic development for Pueblo County.”

Read the Washington Post article here.

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