Earlier this month, the French retailer Tati shut the doors on their original Paris store — its last remaining store — for good.
But the closure of this beloved discount clothing chain might mean more than just a brand going out of business. It may be a sign of what appears to be a new, permanent shopping preference for consumers in France. E-commerce and online retail are now king, while traditional brick-and-mortar shopping has lost its luster amidst the coronavirus.
The data we see here on CCINSIGHT confirms this shift to online shopping. But what, at first, had the makings of a temporary trend looks more like a long-term change.
In a recent article from The Guardian, Yohann Petiot of the Trade Alliance of French clothing and shoe retailers commented on Tati’s closing, noting that the brand “has also been hit by the same crises that are causing problems for the whole retail sector: the gilets jaunes (yellow vests) anti-government protests, the transport strikes, and finally the Covid-19 lockdown, which for some will be the final straw.”
So what does this mean for retail in France going forward? Likely, one of two scenarios:
One, brands that are primarily rooted in the brick-and-mortar retail model will face challenges as they fight to survive and compete.
Two, brands will either shift completely to e-commerce, or become omnichannel retail brands that can offer equally compelling engagement in-store and online, allowing their customers to choose the experience they prefer.
So is this the end of brick-and-mortar retail in France? Or will it make a reemergence down the road? Continue monitoring CCINSIGHT to see up-to-date data regarding retail trends in France.