Focus Trends~ Apparel

FOCUS TRENDS is a monthly retail strategies article on a specific retail category highlighting growth and contraction within the market. For more on Apparel please listen to our APPAREL WEBINAR.



The apparel retail sector has taken over headlines over the past few months, but it’s mainly been big-name closures grabbing the spotlight. Retailers such as Rue21, Payless ShoeSource, Gap, The Limited, Bebe, and other have announced all or many of their locations will close. After rapid expansion, the apparel sector is entering a period of rapid contraction.

However, as these closures have spread, just as many apparel retailers have expanded and adopted future expansion plans that likely stems the tide of closures in the sector. Ross, T.J. Maxx, and Carter’s are a few retailers that look to be aggressive in their openings. There’s also the Millennial-driven retailers such as Uniqlo, H&M, and Lululemon that have ambitions to extend their physical presence.

The Numbers

The apparel sector is one that online shopping has completely transformed. While off-price and high-end retailers have remained afloat similar to the situation facing other retail sectors, the retailers in the middle without strong brand recognition and online presence have suffered during this time of flux. Communities should be wary of impending closures but not hopeless that other retailers can backfill former stores and help fill up new retail development.

Focus Trends Webinar


The Numbers

Expansion and Closure Numbers

Retailer NameExisting Stores 2016New StoresClosures 2016
Burlington Coat Factory5584910
CATO Fashions10911910
Charming Charlie351106
Nordstrom Rack197210
Ross Dress For Less1318846
T.J. Maxx11504813

What do you need?

Recent Posts

My relationship with the Retail Strategies team has been extremely valuable over the last couple of years as I’ve searched for sites in the Southeast. They have been persistent and provided any information they could gather for available properties that fit my criteria. If they received news that a space was coming available they made sure to immediately give me a call and connect with the owners. I would recommend using this service to any of my colleagues looking in their client cities.

Walter Kelly, Broker

Arc Realty

walter kelley arc realty

Retail Strategies has been a tremendous asset to Cypress. They have access to industry and business intelligence in an immensely competitive retail environment. The relationships they develop with commercial/retail property owners delivers results for the city because Retail Strategies excels at marketing their clients.

Peter Grant, City Manager

Cypress, CA

Time Kills Deals


Cafe Rio’s CDO answers incentive questions, letting communities know how they can influence retailers.