While there may be unprecedented fear due to COVID-19 that brick and mortar shops will become obsolete post-pandemic, the rise of e-commerce sales by traditional retails that supercede that of online stores demonstrates brand loyalty and the value of a consumer location.
Part of it is tied to the shopping experience and conveyed luxury: sometimes the wrapping on the Chanels and Louboutins isn't enough— there's something special about spending a leisure weekend trying on different bags, shoes, and hopping over to a counter to try on a new shade of lipstick. Many brick and mortar shops have expanded their online presence during the pandemic and EPS growth surprise: examples being Lululemon which maintains a strong overweight positioning, Restoration Hardware Holdings, to Dick's Sporting Goods and Wayfair Inc.
What's notable about each of these omnichannel successes is they are very nuanced and tailor to a specific avatar. Lululemon for fitness gurus, RH for a luxury interior designer, Wayfair for a homey one, and Dick's for families and fitness coaches. They illustrate the success behind brands with a loyal customer based via their boutique-like feel in the ever expanding monopoly space of fast fashion, consumerism, and warehouse monopoly.
While many brands will fail, many shopping centers and retail locations will close, we are bullish in companies that maintain an offline to online presence, and consequently, retail REITS that uphold their real estate. All markets overlap and consumerism is the driving force behind all of them.