E-Commerce has slowly gained prominence as the primary method for retail shopping in this day and age. From March 25th to May 27th, 2015, the Pew Research Center conducted a survey showing that 72% of Americans own a smartphone, while 89% use the internet. The same survey further stated that “76% of internet users across the 40 countries surveyed use social media sites," meaning that these individuals were likely exposed to advertisements from retail stores that the internet user frequented. Thus, exposure to deals or items that the user is interested in were more likely to be bought online (immediately) then when discovered in a store (later). The convenience and accessibility to millions of products right at consumers' fingertips is what makes e-commerce a popular avenue for shopping.
Technology is continuously improving and the resulting statistics from the above survey are likely to increase over the upcoming years due to the large part technology plays in our lives and the world in general. Smartphones, tablets, and computers are all means of connecting an individual to a retailer, which is made easy by simply visiting a store’s website to make a purchase. This manner of shopping has many advantages including: easily refined searches, convenience, and the ability to compare identical items across several stores without having to physically go to each store. Additionally, stores like Publix offer “easy online-ordering” so food is ready for pickup at a designated time. A number of restaurants are also offering similar services.
Industrial REITs can expect to see growth as the demand for industrial space increases. With more online shopping, there will be a need for more warehouses, giving investors of this particular REIT an opportunity to make decent returns.