Store of the Future

Suitcase brands are ramping up expansion plans as air travel returns

This month marked the first time that two million passengers were screened in airports on a single day. Suitcase and travel brands are embracing the return of air travel by offering new products, expanding into new markets and doubling down on brick-and-mortar.

Latest Stories

  • JUN 22, 2021

    As shopping patterns continue to evolve, grocers are investing in ghost kitchens

    Grocers like Walmart and Kroger saw explosive growth in 2020. Now, in an attempt to both keep growth apace and figure out more profitable revenue streams, they're looking into ghost kitchens.

  • JUN 22, 2021

    ‘A tale of two cities’: New York’s retail landscape remains in flux

    Before the pandemic, there were distinct lines between New York's most popular neighborhoods for shopping -- from Soho to Fifth Avenue. Now, no one knows exactly what the most sought-after New York City retail neighborhoods will be going forward, and retailers are operating in a holding pattern until more office workers and tourists return to Manhattan.

  • JUN 22, 2021
    outdoors kiosk

    Why retailers are still holding big events outdoors

    Brands are carrying outdoor retail experiences into a post-pandemic future. During the pandemic, outdoor malls outpaced indoor shopping and were better equipped to accommodate social distancing regulations. In response, traditionally indoor retailers and brands experimented by pushing their shopping experiences outside, hosting open-air popups or building outdoor structures. Now, these brands and retailers are incorporating the outdoors into their future retail plan.

  • JUN 22, 2021

    ‘All I know is mayhem’: Life as an Amazon Shopper

    When customers place an order through Amazon’s Prime Now program -- its two-hour grocery delivery service that the company is now rolling into its main shopping app -- the order is routed to a network of Amazon workers, called Amazon Shoppers, to pick the orders. Modern Retail spoke to one shopper who shared how her job has changed.

  • JUN 22, 2021

    Free samples are returning to the post-pandemic world — but they’re different than before

    The future of samples is pre-packed, according to brands experimenting with handing out free products in the coming months. As CPG brands attempt to find and retain customers, some companies are looking to digital and outdoor pop-ups to distribute samples.

  • JUN 22, 2021

    How retailers are enticing customers to come back into stores

    In 2020, in-store foot traffic dropped precipitously due to pandemic stay-at-home orders and social distancing regulations. While large retailers like Kohl’s discussed the return-to-store in their 2021 first quarter earnings calls, many brands report that foot traffic still hasn’t returned to pre-pandemic levels. To draw consumers back to store after a year spent at home, brands are returning to events, offering in-store-exclusives and courting a vaccinated consumer.

  • JUN 22, 2021

    How virtual customer service is entering physical retail

    Late last year, the use of virtual assistants in physical stores received a major boost when Amazon started integrating Alexa into its growing physical retail network -- most prominently in its Amazon Fresh grocery stores. Around the same time, other retailers, like McDonald's, also began offering voice assistants at stores -- suggesting that a concept long relegated to novelty status might be catching on in the wake of the pandemic.

  • JUN 22, 2021

    ‘I will never work in retail again’: Big-box retail employees are feeling burnt out after a year of being stretched thin

    Throughout the pandemic, retail workers  found their to-do-lists growing by the day. At the beginning of the pandemic, they were tasked with cleaning down highly-trafficked areas and working quickly to restock the items that were flying off the shelves, like toilet paper. Then, during the first round of stay-at-home orders, many of them were transferred over to fulfill curbside and buy online pickup in-store orders, services that became more popular during the pandemic. As a result, many retail workers are feeling burnt out after a year of being pulled in multiple directions.

  • JUN 15, 2021

    From McDonald’s to Chipotle, restaurants are doubling down on drive-thrus

    Fast food and fast casual chains are betting on drive-thrus to remain popular, even as the pandemic subsides. Particularly in the early stages of the pandemic, restaurants struggled as indoor dining shuttered in most states. But, drive-thru visits soared, up 26% year-over-year in the second quarter of 2020 according to NPD Group. In response, experienced drive-thru players like McDonald’s as well as other newer players announced new investments in the feature.

  • JUN 14, 2021

    ‘The no mask policy is already giving me anxiety’: 4 retail workers on changing mask regulations

    Last month, the CDC announced the loosening of its mask guidance, saying people who are fully vaccinated against the coronavirus are not required to wear a mask “in any setting” unless local laws and regulations demanded it. Since then, retailers have been left to their own devices to come up with new mask guidelines for employees and customers. Modern Retail spoke to four people currently working in retail about how they feel about these new guidelines.

  • JUN 14, 2021

    A tale of 3 cities: The state of retail in Miami, Chicago and Los Angeles

    After a year and a half of unevenly applied US Covid-19 regulations as well as various city exoduses, Miami, Los Angeles and Chicago’s retail scenes fare differently. While many hope for a return to store in 2021, retailers' fates rest somewhat on location. Here's our look into how the three cities are faring.

  • JUN 07, 2021

    Why retailers are increasingly building mobile apps for store employees

    As store workers at many big-box retailers like Walmart, Target and Best Buy are now expected to deal with both online and in-store orders, retailers are increasingly thinking about creating new tech tools to help workers manage the growing list of tasks they're responsible for. Walmart, for example announced last week that it was creating a new mobile app called Me@Walmart. Through the app, store employees can manage their shifts and view their schedules, use a voice-activated personal assistant to answer common questions, such as where certain items are located throughout the store, and eventually, use the app to scan merchandise in the backroom.

  • JUN 01, 2022

    Why independent retailers are joining shopper networks

Modern Retail Awards
Sep 9, 2022

Recognizing the companies and campaigns modernizing retail in the digital age.