Kmart Store Map
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The Sears Holdings Corp., which owns both Sears and Kmart, closed nearly 400 Sears and Kmart stores in 2017, and another 45 Kmart stores closed in January 2018. Shutting down unprofitable stores is a huge undertaking, but the company is aiming to right size its footprint in the retail market.
There are currently 428 Kmart Stores in the US
Paradigm Shift in the Retail Industry
The retail industry is entering a new paradigm. Brick-and-mortar department stores are closing as new ways of shopping take over.
So, what’s going on? Your first guess is probably that Amazon.com is running a steam roller over in-store shopping, and you’d be right. Amazon is the world’s largest retailer and consumers love it! So, that’s part of what’s hurting the retail shops, but not all of it.
Spending $$$ on Big-Ticket Items
Consumers have been investing more of their money in really big-ticket purchases, like their homes. They’re choosing to pay more for higher-end finishings, like spa bathrooms, stone counter tops and hardwood floors. Add to that the fact that more and more of Americans’ hard-earned cash is being spent in high-tech specialty shops to purchase smartphones (and the data plans that go with them), laptops, home automation products and streaming services like Netflix. And, let’s not forget the bigger and better automobiles–doesn’t every family have an SUV?
Dollar Stores Deliver a Punch
The number of dollar stores is rising by leaps and bounds. In 2015, there were over 29,000 dollar stores in the United States, and that number rises daily. One thousand new Dollar General stores opened in 2017, alone! The dollar stores offer customers ridiculously low prices on many of the products they used to buy at department stores. They are often the first place shoppers look for kitchenware, garden tools, toys, gift wrap and so much more.
The days of heading downtown to the local department stores are long over. Today, fashion boutiques, shoe stores, small-ticket jewellery shops, bath and cosmetic shops, home decor stores–to list just a few–are catering to consumers’ more highly developed tastes and needs. Stores such as Forever 21, Zara and Pottery Barn are winning the race to the cash registers.
There’s no doubt about it, shopping habits are changing. I, for one, would rather sit on my sofa with a cup of tea and my laptop to search for the best price on my next home automation gadget, than run around from store to store.
I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what happens with Kmart. It’s a tough arena, but the Sears Holding Corp. is giving it its best shot!
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