Centre for Economic Transformation| CET

Online stores: a place offline?



Shopping areas are under pressure from the impact of online shopping. The focus in attention from both the government and market agents is therefore shifting from building new shopping areas to keeping existing ones in good health.

Finding tenants for vacant shop floor spaces is a challenge of increasing importance in this context. Interesting question is what online shops with a demand for physical space might do here. Certain companies that operate solely via the internet have shown in interest in opening a (temporary) shop to support online activities. This might break the increasingly negative spiral for shopping areas. But what determines the choice to open a physical point of sale?

Various research projects have been carried out into online shopping behaviour and its (spatial) impact, but none have inquired so far into the (temporary) demand for physical space at online stores. The central question is:

  • What are the considerations and characteristics for online stores with an interest in a (temporary) physical location in a shopping area and what demands do they have regarding temporary shop locations?

The research should give (local) policy makers, centre and shopping street managers, owners of shop floor real estate and entrepreneurs insight into the possibilities for (temporary) physical locations for an online store in a shopping area for on the one have the shopping area and on the other hand the online stores themselves.


Project Info

Start date 01 Jul 2013
End date 01 Mar 2014