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United States of America


United States of America

Posting stronger growth relative to other developed countries, the economic outlook for the US remains positive. Consumer spending, which contributes to more than two-thirds of gross domestic product, is buoyed by ongoing job and wage growth, easier access to credit, and low gas prices. Accordingly, retail sales have seen moderate but steady growth over the post-recession period.

E-commerce growth continues to be a key contributor to US retail sales, growing at an average of 15% a year since 2010 and accounting for 8.5% of total retail sales at the start of 2017. U.S. consumers are increasingly “channel agnostic”, shopping across multiple channels for a single purchase. In order to capture consumer spend, retailers have to adopt omnichannel strategies, providing consumers seamless coordination between online, mobile, and physical store platforms.

Following economic and labor market growth, key urban gateway markets continue to attract retailer investment, with urban high streets remaining a top-performing asset class. However, second-tier cities with high job growth are also attracting retailers, as they offer high population densities at lower rents relative to the gateway cities.

Brick-and-mortar sales growth has been strongest for categories with less e-commerce competition. Food and beverage retailers (especially restaurants) have seen strong post-recession growth, as has the furniture/home furnishings category. As the share of e-commerce in total retail sales continues to rise, growth will be strongest for those retailers that can not only leverage omnichannel strategies but provide unique and compelling experiences in their physical stores. 

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