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Mall Rats: Gen-Z shoppers are rerouting the future of physical retail

As “retail apocalypse” rumors continue to fly, teenagers are reviving shopping centers’ foot traffic. Among the draws are a social experience, immediate gratification, a personal branding opportunity and a much-needed break from their mobile phones.  

Latest Stories

  • MAR 23, 2020

    How internet culture and Instagram changed the rules of internships

    When 21-year-old Hunter College student Kenneth Pabon began looking for a fashion internship during his spring 2019 semester, he took a little bit of a different approach to finding his gig. Pabon did not use Hunter College’s career advising office or scour online job boards like LinkedIn, where he does have a profile, or Indeed. Instead, he Instagram direct-messaged two of his favorite fashion influencers, Sophie and Charlotte Bickley, sisters behind the website and social media accounts Yin 2My Yang.

  • MAR 20, 2020

    How brands are adapting to the expectations of an increasingly vegan generation

    Studies suggest around 80% of Gen-Zers expect to consume fewer animal-related products in the coming year, over 30% intend to be on entirely meat-free diets by 2021 and 44% think being vegan is cooler than smoking. But Gen Z’s culture and attitudes surrounding plant-based products are very different than those of their elders, and what’s resonated with Millennials isn’t going to cut it with a new generation of consumers for whom availability of non-animal-based products is expected.

  • MAR 19, 2020

    The saddest generation: Why Gen Z is the most anxious generation ever

    Alex is a 22-year-old social media manager for a startup. Six months ago, while standing in a crowded No. 3 express train on the way to work, he had a panic attack. “I was staring at my phone, trying to simultaneously respond to a Slack message from my boss but also scrolling through Instagram and texting a friend when I thought I was going to die,” says Alex (who didn’t wish to use his last name because he doesn’t want to be known as “the depressed guy” at work). “I literally thought I was being crushed under what felt like a mountain of work, overwhelmed, and messages were coming at me from everywhere, and I just wanted to die.”

  • MAR 19, 2020

    TikTok Royalty: Here are the stars you need to know

    Most adults have probably never heard of Loren Gray. But plenty of teens know all about the TikTok celebrity with 38.4 million followers. What exactly makes a creator like Gray soar in popularity is somewhat of a mystery, but those who “understand trends and become early adopters are more likely to gain more traction,” says Ariadna Jacob, CEO of Influences.

  • MAR 16, 2020

    The New QVC: Gen Z is driving a livestreaming boom

    QVC may still be a dominant player in interactive shopping, but new entrants include app providers focusing on livestreaming shopping and social media companies building out their commerce capabilities. 

  • MAR 12, 2020

    Explainer: What are Chinese KOLs?

    Here is how China's peer to peer KOL marketing, known as the drivers of “social commerce,” help brand achieve sales.

  • MAR 05, 2020

    Since launching in-house delivery program, DTC furniture company Article now delivers half of its orders in under a week

    Last January, direct-to-consumer furniture brand Article took a step that's still relatively unusual for a startup: it launched an in-house last-mile delivery program. As an online-only startup that has yet to open a single store, Article viewed building its own in-house delivery operation as a necessary customer service investment. The biggest benefit of launching ADT is that it has allowed Article to reduce delivery times. The company is now able to deliver roughly half of its orders in under a week, compared to 30% in 2018

  • FEB 24, 2020

    After layoffs, Wayfair’s path to profitability remains unclear

    In 2020, e-commerce startups are facing a greater sense of urgency to turn a profit, and furniture company Wayfair is no exception. Earlier this month, the company announced that it was cutting 550 jobs, or about 3% of its workforce. In an email to Wayfair employees obtained by the Boston Globe, CEO Niraj Shah said that "We find ourselves at a place where we are, from an execution standpoint, investing in too many disparate areas, with an uneven quality and speed of execution."

  • FEB 13, 2020

    Why the VC-DTC calculus is changing

    Many onlookers believe a DTC cooling is on the horizon. With a bunch of less-than-stellar exits from the likes of Casper, Peloton and Harry's, the VC-funding model of branding building seems to be crumbling. This leaves both investors and founders left with the question: Is it worth it to raise money from venture firms? It's becoming a more complicated topic, and one that will have a big impact on a company's choices down the line.

  • FEB 10, 2020

    Casper finally IPOs, casting a shadow on DTC exits

    Casper is finally a public company. The road here was bumpy. It involved the mattress brand slashing its valuation by more than half and hoping Wall Street would take the bait. Conversely, Peloton, which IPO'd earlier this year, went another route -- going all in and hoping its buzz would lead to fortune. Both are having difficulty on the public markets. And they show the evolving blueprint growing DTC brands have to make when looking for an exit.

  • FEB 07, 2020

    See the slides: What retailers need to know about Amazon product pages

    Selling on Amazon can be tricky. The company’s sheer scale means the key to getting the most out of Amazon as a retailer is the details. That was the major takeaway at Digiday Media’s recent Amazon Strategies event.

  • FEB 05, 2020

    Shark Tank investor Kevin O’Leary’s playbook for building a brand: ‘Let’s see how far we can get online’

    Venture capitalist and Shark Tank star Kevin O'Leary recently invested in the DTC eco-friendly cleaning product brand Blueland. In his opinion, online remains the best place to grow a business. Modern Retail sat down and talked with him about the direct-to-consumer landscape, and he had a few warnings for companies that don't have their margins in check.

  • MAR 23, 2020
    Sponsored

    A retailer’s guide to email marketing

    While many channels factor into customer experience, email has by far the most reach. In a new guide for retail marketers, learn the best practices for using email to drive revenue, increase brand awareness and boost traffic.

Amazon Strategies
Apr 20–Apr 24, 2020

A series of presentations, workshops and talks to help you navigate and survive our current crisis and the acceleration of e-commerce that has come with it.

Register Now