Shopping in the future: the importance of local buy

On Saturday 6 and Sunday 7 may organizes CityZine a festival in the Ghent city centre. The focus lay them on the local merchants, the convenience store. Managing director at CityZine, Ferre Hindryckx, put this initiative on legs to be like this matters even more in the paint. On the menu are, in fact, no chains, no Zara, no Pizza Hut. Nor during the CityZine Festival, nor in the same magazines themselves. That conscious choice has a number of good reasons.

Ghent © Getty Images

It seems that having a physical store, now not as favourable. I acknowledge the difficulties but see the future of physical stores, nevertheless, quite positive about it. In the first instance, we have the great advantages of the brick store does not lose sight of. Things like the experience of shopping, the personal service, the quality of carefully selected products by the passionate shopkeeper are cases where chains or online shopping giants can’t match can. The strengthening of the urban handelskernen and the support of local traders is now high on the to do list. Or at least, that would be so, anywhere.

The real issues of the winkeliersDelen

We have the great advantages of the brick store does not lose sight of

Lately there has been much said about the pros and cons of online shopping: there are going to be voting on a tax to enter specifically for foreign e-commerce. I think this really is not the solution.

Online buy is there, goes away, and is actually also no problem. I see the convenience of it. Work, children, little time… There are plenty of good reasons why people prefer to be in the evening at 21h in online shopping. Unfortunately, the ease of it a bit too much romanticized. Admit, how many times was effectively ‘at home’ when the package was delivered? For instance, I’m often my package in the local post office, or in the local supermarket may go up. Not much difference, therefore, is effectively to a ‘brick store’. My advice to the traders reads therefore: build your online portal.


Admit, how many times was effectively ‘at home’ when the package that you purchased was delivered?

Make sure that you were also after 18h to view online. With the option to reserve or buy. The fact that Zalando today more and more looking for partnerships with local shoe stores where customers make their shoes even more able to pick up shows that they, also, the efficiency of the local shop recognise. After all, if a local store a thousand items of something sells, they will on an economically and ecologically more responsible manner than Zalando that this door-to-door.

All of these supplies are unquestionably a lot of damage to the environment and also the main cause of the high losses of the online giants. So, more than 50% of the products online were purchased returned. It does not fit, the colour does not match with the photo, or for pure opportunism: people wear clothing for a night out and send this shameless back.


Online and brick stores will anyway in the direction of a hybrid model to evolve

Online and brick stores will only in the direction of a hybrid model evolving, where the physical accessibility and the convenience of online hand-in-hand together.

This brings us to a hot topic in cities such as Ghent and Antwerp. The accessibility of the town centre, there is a legitimate issue. The new mobility plan of Ghent, roadworks, parking fees et cetera can be a spanner in the works of the shopkeepers throw. These problems are real, but always of a temporary nature. What does not detract from the fact that some commercial matters, as well as the consumer will have to adapt to the changed reality: a caterer for 80 per cent of customers who come to pick up the car and, suddenly, in the pedestrian area ends up, will need to refocus.

Also the feeling of insecurity such as after the attacks of march 22, 2016, is of a transitory nature. More important is the changed purchasing behaviour of the consumer. Slogans such as “buy experiences, not things’ do it for the last two years very well. This will respond to the antimaterialisme, on the tendency to ‘declutteren’, and those are probably direct consequences of the recent difficult economic years. If you have 500 euros? Go on a journey. Hang not to stuff.µ


Slogans such as “buy experiences, not things’ do it for the last two years very well.

This is, I think, to a large extent a counter-reaction to the so-called disposable products. Chains such as H&M and Primark that the capitalist model is perfected, pressing for more than a decade, the cost of making garments, interior items… They cut on costs, such as production by the use of workers in foreign sweatshops and offer clothes at bargain prices. They plagiarized without shame design pieces such as the bra of Belgian lingerielabel La Fille d’O., Local designers and dealers can here impossible to compete with. They choose their clothing in Belgium or Europe, for ethical and economic reasons. The delivered product is in all respects high-quality and gives the buyer a much larger and longer satisfy the consumers requirement.

Benefits from the local store

Fortunately, there are a lot of advantages to having a physical store. Retailers should have these benefits play out. A trader who is inspired by his or her product knowledge and know-how.


Retailers have the advantages of a physical shop anymore to play.

This is more in the quality of the goods. That were carefully selected. You can also assume a better service, even if there are complaints. The retailer is directly approachable. No hassle with forms and e-mails where the answer often is not forthcoming. Above all, there is the experience of shopping. Smell, feel, fit, get advice on colour and style… But not only that. We’re already enough of a screen, glued. Shopping, whether for groceries or a new pair of shoes, brings you among the people. Social interactions, they are so important.

The local, unique shops make it in addition the city is also partly to what that is. People move to a different city to go shopping in branches of chains that they have. The strengthening of the handelskern would also be high on the to do list of many politicians. Here are the cities and municipalities have a crucial responsibility. The question can indeed be asked whether the major chains even have a place in a car-free city centre. Anyway, they have quality products, of all kinds, are on the rise. There is also more and more awareness.

Retailers must consider where they can make a difference and this is great: style advice, a business event with a local make-up artist, the proposals of the new collection, a cross-pollination with a friendly business that for snacks ensures… in Short: everything the experience.


The offering of unique products, which are not or much harder online can be purchased, will make all the difference.

Also the choice of products is hugely important. By default, products will more and more be bought online. The consumer knows exactly what they are buying, without having seen the. The offering of unique products, which are not or much harder online can be purchased, will make all the difference. Some klerenwinkels work now, for example, only together with brands that have no online shop. That is, according to me correctly, and in the long term even positive for the brands: they have, after all, benefit from as many local establishments where their clothes are hanging, so as many people as possible to be seen.

Brands their clothing online offering, will in the short term perhaps more generate profit (higher margin), but decimate in this way, their own stores making them long-term, less visibility and thus less new customers will generate.

Go local!Share

If you buy something, then you can choose.

Everything now comes together. In reaction to the fugitive, among others, catalysed by technology and social media, we notice a rising interest in everything local and high. We see this not only in terms of shopping, but also on nutrition. There is less meat consumed, the focus has shifted to bio, eigenkweek, slow versus fast, vegetables and fruit. There is a mentaliteitsshift to the corridor.

Underestimated the importance of local money to spend. Sarah Van Liefferinge, puts it well in Knack 27/12/16: “Every time when we are in a multinational company or international chain buying, let money flow away from the local communities. We can better support local economies, and certainly the traders who are locally-sourced or sustainable alternatives. Less disposable, more quality.’


Less of disposable items buy means that your money can be spent on a quality, timeless piece from a local designer.

So, a less large number of disposable items buy means that your money can be spent on a quality, timeless piece from a local designer. And most importantly: yes, you invest it in structures that are future-oriented, both to the planet and to the economy. When you buy, you vote. If you buy something, then you choose, and whether you want it or not, your choice has indeed an impact.

Also here, the government must think about how we buy it locally can stimulate. Prefer 10,000 new jobs in buurderijen, than 10,000 bullshit jobs for people who have overnight packages. An option could be to transport over a long distance charge, also within Europe. We can, as a region, after all, choosing for a more ecological model, in which not only the environment, but also benefit the people.

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