There’s an idea floating around that people are spending more money at malls because they have more money, and you can see it in the stats.
According to data from Experian, the average consumer spent more than 10 times the amount of money on retail products in 2014 than in 2002, according to a report from research firm eMarketer.
And it’s a good thing that most people aren’t spending more on mall shopping.
In fact, in 2014, malls were the least expensive place to shop in the country.
But now we’re learning that people don’t want to spend the same amount of time and money in a mall that they did in 2002.
A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Michigan and the University at Buffalo and published in the journal Retail Politics found that shoppers were spending less time in malls in 2016.
“In the most recent data from the Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers, the number of people in malls fell by about 7% in the past decade,” the researchers wrote.
“By contrast, the numbers of people who spent time in a shopping center fell by 2.4%.
By contrast, shoppers spent about 3 times more time in shopping centers in 2014.”
The study found that spending on the mall is down, too.
In 2015, mall shoppers spent $7,200 on their trip to the mall, compared to $11,400 in 2016, a decline of $8,600.
And while spending in malls has gone down, shoppers are still spending more than ever in malls, spending more time than ever.
And this time, the data shows that spending in the mall doesn’t just have to be money.
“Our study suggests that consumers are spending less on the shopping experience because of new technology that allows them to pay with cash and more time on their trips to the store, including shopping on their own, at home or at the office,” the study said.
“The shopping experience can also be improved by adding additional services, like kiosks, a more convenient cashier and more accessible parking, or by improving the experience of the mall itself, such as better signage or improved lighting,” the authors wrote.
Mall shoppers may not be spending as much time in the store in the same way they were in 2002 or even 2016.
But the researchers found that shopping malls are the least-visited places in America.
“While mall traffic may have been stagnant or declined during the decade of the Great Recession, the vast majority of mall visitors were staying home,” they wrote.
So the data is telling us that if you want to save money and spend time at a mall, it’s time to take a step back.