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Home > By DEPARTMENTS > Sales and Marketing > Marketing Management > Green Marketing Trends

Local & Urban Retail Are In, Even for Big Box Stores

Green business thrives with its community - and when that community is urban, and growing more so -- you can count on this marketplace attracting big box stores and global players. How do you compete?

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According to, a real estate newsletter, big-box retailers are looking to size down store sizes in efforts to grow in urban areas.

  • Walmart is focusing on smaller stores.
  • Target has plans to do the same.
  • Home Depot is already incorporating the strategy.

On the surface, it makes sense. Even with higher real estate costs, these chains are moving into high-density areas with significant household incomes.

A Reuters article recently interviewed industry observers: Can Walmart, Target and others execute with smaller stores? The chains “need to figure out how to make money if they cannot stock as many high-profit margin goods, like clothes, to offset brisk sales of low-margin items, like pasta sauce,” the report says.

"We would think that companies such as these could make that balance work," observes Globe Street, "but their expansion into urban locales is admittedly slow."

Local and Urban -- Two Key Trends

Trend ONE: Buying "local" is a philosophy by green and sustainable community advocates. The benefits are fostering local jobs, local tax revenues to support local services, and local thriving small business ownership.

Trend TWO: The world is now more "Urban" than "Rural" and I'm sure that big box stores are looking at that trend and wondering how they are going to locate megastores in tight quarters where population density is above 3,000 per square mile.

Local & Urban Retail Are In, Even for Big Box Stores

Both of these trends have been important lifeblood for small local businesses. It appears that the competition is heating up for smaller, local and urban.

How will you compete? What are your strengths in these areas?

  • Customer service?
  • Segmented products that match your exact customers?
  • Higher quality product selection?
  • Product PLUS service business model?
  • Uber-green?

Small and medium size business has advantages, but often we forget to look at what our customers WANT or PREFER and reverse engineer our solution. But that's a powerful strategy!

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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