A new study forecasting the next five years of British retail has sparked fears that the traditional high street could fail by 2018.
The report from The Centre for Retail Research (CRR) reveals that 22% of today’s high street shops are expected to close within the next five years. This could equate to 316,000 job losses.
An even greater impact is likely to be felt by neighbourhood stores. These are likely to drop by 26% as a result of the declining profitability of neighbourhood shopping, the unwillingness of retailers to continue operating in small neighbourhoods and the move towards perceived lower prices and better availability of stores in town centres, retail parks and internet shopping.
One of the big reasons for shop failure is being attributed to the popularity of online shopping, which is expected to make up 21.5% of purchases by 2018 (almost double the current figure).