With the announcement recently that 50 shops from the JUST Group are set to close – including Portmans, Just Jeans and Peter Alexander – it is clear that mainstream retailers need to start doing something differently. According to Linda Anderson, Founder of Mums on the Go™, mainstream retailers need to become child-friendly in order to survive.
“Mothers avoid shopping for things such as clothes for themselves because it is too hard when they have small children in tow” Ms Anderson says. “I would personally spend a lot more money in retail stores if it was easier to spend time browsing and trying on clothes knowing that my children were happily occupied.”
“A very small percentage of the businesses listed on the Mums on the GoTM online directory of child-friendly businesses are retailers” Ms Anderson states. “This suggests there is a huge opportunity for retailers willing to embrace change”.
Becoming child-friendly does not need to be a difficult or expensive undertaking by retail stores. Ms Anderson offers the following simple ideas to create a child-friendly retail experience:
- Ensure there is easy access for strollers and enough room to manoeuvre them inside.
- Consider a simple toy basket located near the change rooms for children to access.
- Set up a small table and chair set with some colouring in.
- Contact Child Friendly Solutions – a company that specialises in safe, tidy, compact play solutions for retailers
Ms Anderson observes that it is mostly boutique style retail shops that make the effort to become child-friendly; however, with retail sales continuing to fall, it is clear that mainstream retailers can no longer afford to ignore this opportunity.
Mums on the Go™ is a website that helps make life easier for Australian mums. It features a directory of child-friendly businesses that meet mums’ needs and make it easy for them to take their children with them. Mums on the Go™ was established to help all mums value their own needs as much as they value their children’s. Linda Anderson is the Founder of Mums on the Go™ and Principal Coach of a2a coaching. Linda has a long history of supporting and empowering people – particularly mums – all across Australia.