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Did you know that every time you shop, you indirectly support millions of jobs and trillions of dollars worth of labor income? So, if you’re feeling guilty about buying those shoes or that new watch, DON’T.

Retail supports 25% of US jobs.

According to the National Retail Federation, retail is the largest private employer in the US, directly and indirectly supporting about 42 million jobs. This translates to $1.6 trillion of labor income and a $2.6 trillion annual contribution to the country’s GDP. Not to mention that retail supports one in four US jobs, making it among the key driving forces of the national economy.

Retail is the largest private employer in the US directly and indirectly supporting about 42 million jobs. 

Most retail companies are in fact small businesses and franchises. Nearly all retail businesses employ less than 50 people. Furthermore, franchise retail products were predicted to see a 5.5 percent growth in financial output in 2017.

Most retail companies are small businesses and employ less than 50 people.

Categories of the industry.

The retail industry contains many sectors, chief among which is the resell retail sector. These retail franchises, such as Plato’s Closet, resell used clothing, bolstering growth throughout the rest of the industry, too. According to a study conducted by NPD, healthy lifestyle trends have moved beyond food and into the retail industry as well. Retail goods such as wearable technology and activewear exploded in popularity in 2015 and have continued along the same path. According to the study, many brands and retailers have taken advantage of the health conscious consumer patterns of millennials.

Other sectors of the retail industry have begun to grow as well, including jewelry, video games, and computer technology. Studies anticipate that these sectors will continue to expand as technology and products develop and update.

Healthy lifestyle trends have moved beyond food and into the retail industry.

Retail battles online merchants.

Just as the education franchise industry, the retail industry has faced challenges in recent years. Chief among these challenges stems from the growth of Amazon and overall e-commerce. In 2016, 43 percent of all US retail sales came from online shopping. However, considering the social aspect behind shopping, it is unlikely that online retailers will ever take full control. Nevertheless, the retail industry continues to work hard to combat low prices put out by Amazon and superstores such as Walmart.

According to Frachise Times, it is anticipated that US companies lose roughly $40 million each year due to poor customer service. For this reason, more retail services are looking to improve and push for improved, affective customer service. With about 97 percent of consumers saying that customer service ranks as “very important” or “somewhat important” in their retail experience, the industry is looking to improve this experience.

Potential solutions & looking ahead

Many retail franchises are also using their geographic location as a way to combat the effects of Amazon and other online retailers. Locally made or grown products frequently appeal to customers, especially given the recent push for more health conscious and eco-friendly products. Promoting at the local level gives retail franchises the opportunity to connect with a direct customer base and encourage loyalty in their clientele.

Location plays a key role in retail franchising. So, finding the perfect spot to open a location or branch is vital in the future success of the franchise. Franchisors and franchisees must consider the market in the area. Is there a demand for the product or service? The customer base in a specific location plays a key role, too. Does the area provide a large and loyal clientele?

Is the Industry Right for You?

Retail franchises are a great way to work with your family, as it is very simple and easy to get them involved in the business. Not to mention, in retail there is an endless amount of options and potential businesses to choose from. This can make for a preferable and fulfilling working environment.

However, competition from online retailers is steep and customers can be unreliable. It’s important to do your research before deciding whether the retail industry fits in your desired business plan and work-life.

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