It’s no secret that retail has fundamentally shifted over the past few years. With the rise in online retailing and speed of delivery, we no longer need to go to shopping centres to buy things – we go there for choice.

But humans want to connect, to socialise, to experience new things. We’re now seeing online retailers look for physical space as a way to connect with customers and curate experiences.

How do we make sure we’re thinking about our town centres in different ways? How do we make sure these centres remain not only relevant, but exciting, inclusive and dynamic places that people visit to connect and belong? How do we use data and customer insights to create the best experiences for our community?

Bricks and mortar retail is not dead, it’s just changing. The best town centres are still seeing increased footfall, productivity and customer satisfaction.

Michelle Abbey, General Manager Retail, Commercial Property Stockland Group spoke with delegates at the ICTC 2019 Conference on Stockland’s approach to placemaking and the importance of curating targeted, locally relevant customer experiences to ensure retail town centres are customer-centric community hubs where locals feel like they belong – and that they remain relevant and exciting as the retail landscape continues to evolve.