The rapidly rising number of online shoppers and the increasing use of mobile devices for shopping has taken its toll on brick-and-mortar businesses. Just days into the new year, a consumer report shared its prediction that thousands of stores will close in the near future.

Small physical stores are not the only ones that will suffer. Large departments stores, known as “anchor stores”, are also expected to feel the effects of the rise in online shopping. In addition to their own sales, these anchor stores boost traffic to the small businesses that surround them. An anchor store’s closing will not only affect the business itself, but the other small brick-and-mortar establishments nearby. According to CoStar, Business Insider reports 310 out of 1,300 malls are at risk of losing an anchor tenant.

The rise of ecommerce outlets like online giant Amazon has made it harder for traditional businesses to lure customers to their physical store. Many companies have changed their sales strategies to try and keep up – offering sales promotions and increasing digital efforts – to attract customers while shutting down physical locations.

Just this month, FOX Business released a list – that is still growing – of top retailers that have had to close some of their locations, due to sagging sales:

  • Abercrombie & Fitch
  • Aerosoles
  • American Apparel
  • Bebe
  • The Children’s Place
  • CVS
  • Guess
  • Crew
  • C. Penny
  • Macy’s
  • Michael Kors
  • Payless
  • Rue21
  • Sears/Kmart
  • Toys R Us
  • Wet Seal

An effective solution for this problem in the retail industry is to make the online interaction and the in-person experience with the business as seamless as possible. Many businesses have encountered problems securing merchant services to offer faster, more flexible solutions. Others have turned to alternative providers that specialize in working with the ecommerce industry.

These providers offer countertop atm machines for secure payment processing, and chargeback protection and prevention programs to safeguard consumer information. Electronic check processing, multiple payment gateways and flexible business funding options are just a few of the other services merchants can take advantage of.

If you are concerned with the future of your brick-and-mortar store and how you can create a positive experience (both online and face-to-face), consider taking a second look at your payment processing options to create a seamless experience for your customers.

Business Funding expert and Sales Manager, Michael Hollis, takes pride in helping the backbone of our country, small business owners. His passions include writing/producing music, and travel.