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  • There's nothing quite like the adrenaline rush of a shopping spree.

  • But for many of us, that no longer means walking around shopping malls.

  • It means shopping online.

  • That's one reason why experts are saying we're in the beginning stages of a retail apocalypse.

  • But are we?

  • You've probably heard about the challenges brick and mortar stores are facing

  • like Toys R Us, which is closing about 900 of its stores in the U.S. and U.K.

  • And there's American retail icon Sears.

  • It pioneered ordering by catalogue and was seen as the Amazon of its time.

  • Sears had survived for 132 years before it filed for bankruptcy in 2018, closing more than 100 stores.

  • It's not just a few big retailers.

  • In just three years we've seen a wave of retailers go bankrupt.

  • And in 2017, retail store closures in the United States hit a record high.

  • But it's not just the United States.

  • Some places like Hong Kong, Singapore and Britain have also been hit by slow retail sales.

  • Almost 6,000 stores closed in Britain last year - that's 16 stores a day.

  • Those figures may sound like doomsday for retailers, but don't write them off yet.

  • There's a silver lining - people love online shopping.

  • This year, Cyber Monday became the largest online shopping day in U.S history,

  • with online sales reaching $7.9 billion in one day, while shoppers spent $6.2 billion on Black Friday.

  • Still, those figures were eclipsed by those of a one-day shopping event in China.

  • Alibaba's Singles Day, which falls on November 11, is China's biggest shopping event.

  • This year, it made a staggering $30.8 billion in 24 hours.

  • China is the largest e-commerce market in the world.

  • The U.S. comes in at number two and the rest of the world makes up about a third of global online sales.

  • But how large is the e-commerce market exactly?

  • Well, for all of 2017, American consumers spent a whopping $453 billion online.

  • That sounds like a lot, but Chinese consumers spent more than twice of that, totalling more than $1 trillion.

  • The spectacular e-commerce figures are the reason why many think physical retail is dying out.

  • But let's take a closer look at the story behind the numbers.

  • Online retail sales have been growing as a proportion of total sales in China, as well as in the United States.

  • Globally, there's a huge appetite for shopping with the click of your mouse.

  • Online sales in Europe are growing 10 times faster than brick and mortar retail,

  • while Southeast Asia's e-commerce growth is skyrocketing, doubling from 2017 to 2018.

  • But here's cause for pause.

  • The explosive growth of online sales is moderating in China, while it's keeping steady in the United States.

  • So we may hear about big household names closing a large number of stores,

  • but overall, retail sales in the United States and China continue to grow steadily.

  • Here's another interesting trend.

  • Online retailers are going from clicks to bricks.

  • Amazon, for instance, has opened about 20 bookstores,

  • at least six Amazon Go convenience stores, as well as its 4-star store.

  • You guessed it - it's a store that only stocks products rated four stars and above on the Amazon website.

  • Alibaba is China's answer to Amazon, and it owns Taobao, China's largest shopping website.

  • I'm here at Alibaba's first Taobao store in Singapore.

  • Taobao is known for its enormous catalog, selling pretty much anything you could possibly imagine.

  • But its store in Singapore carries only a selection of some of its coolest items.

  • Would you like a chicken wing pillow?

  • Well you can't quite bring it home, but you can scan the QR code and order it online.

  • At least you know exactly what you're getting.

  • Alibaba is keen on integrating online and offline retail.

  • To drive up hype for Singles Day, it got 200,000 stores across China to participate.

  • Shoppers could try on make-up testing mirrors and get freebies through their mobile phones.

  • Its biggest bet on physical at the moment?

  • That would be its Hema supermarkets, of which there are about 60 in China.

  • Shoppers can go to Hema to get seafood served by robots,

  • or they can order at Hema online and get groceries delivered in 30 minutes.

  • Online retailers seem to be absolutely pummelling the competition.

  • So why are Alibaba and Amazon bothering to open physical stores?

  • First of all, while sales from their brick and mortar stores may not quite be as mind-boggling as their online

  • figures, there is evidence that shoppers who buy in-store end up purchasing more from their online stores.

  • And here's what's even more valuable - the data.

  • Opening physical stores provides tech giants with even more data about shopping behavior, likely

  • helping Alibaba and Amazon get even better at making irresistible offers to both online and offline shoppers.

  • Mall operators and more traditional retailers also want to get in on the action.

  • Asian real estate company Capitaland brought in Taobao for its mall in Singapore,

  • and it will also open the country's first online-and-offline mall,

  • which will include robots, automation and facial recognition technology.

  • Despite their love for online shopping, many customers still want to try on products in store.

  • More importantly, they want to buy.

  • So it's up to retailers if they want to bring on the retail revolution, or face the apocalypse.

  • Hi everyone, it's Xin En!

  • Thanks for watching.

  • If you want to check out more of our CNBC videos, click here.

  • As usual, please feel free to leave any future suggestions for videos in our comments section.

  • That's all for now, don't forget to subscribe, see you next time!

There's nothing quite like the adrenaline rush of a shopping spree.

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小売業は死にかけている?| CNBCが解説します (Is retail dying? | CNBC Explains)

  • 44 10
    April Lu に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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