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Physical Fashion Retailing Lives On

Michael Di Carlo • 08/05/2020

In Q1, Cushman & Wakefield surveyed the Melbourne CBD Retail Core, and this week’s findings focus on all things fashion retail.

Footwear and personal accessory retailers account for 454 retail outlets (plus department stores like H&M, David Jones and Myer), in total accounting for almost 40% of outlets surveyed. If we include floorspace into consideration, this figure is closer to 48% or nearly 73,000 sqm.

Some additional findings:

  • Over 300 of these outlets are menswear, womenswear or mixed-gender clothing outlets
  • 51 are dedicated footwear outlets
  • 63 watch and jewellery outlets
  • Almost 30 outlets specialise in personal accessories

Of the 300 or so apparel retailers, the majority are dedicated womenswear stores or mixed clothing, as there are substantially fewer dedicated menswear stores.

In contrast to common discussions around the decline of physical retail outlets, there are currently 454 outlets today – a surprising increase over the number surveyed in 2010. There has been a balance of sales between online and storefronts, which demonstrates the resilience of a physical presence.

Click-and-collect, physical inspections and change rooms are critical components of modern-day retailing, and this is difficult for retailers to provide without physical space.

Unfortunately, some businesses have been unsuccessful over-time, as customer tastes and demands continue to shift. Some markets have seen demise, whilst others have flourished.

Physical Fashion Retailing Lives On
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