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Evolution of the Sector
The U.S. is the undisputed world leader of the retail industry: of the world's ten largest retail companies, five are based in the country. According to the latest report by PwC and the National Retail Federation (NRF) - released on May 2020 - the industry’s total GDP impact was $3.9 trillion, accounting for 18.7 percent of US GDP in 2018. The retail industry directly provided 32 million jobs for American workers (accounting for 16.0 percent of the national total), making it the largest private-sector employer in the country. Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, retail sales in the US could be down by at least 6.5% in 2020, according to new estimates by market research firm Euromonitor. Also according to Euromonitor's analysis, companies that will be less affected by the Coronavirus crisis include food retailers, e-commerce players such as Amazon, third-party delivery platforms and major food brands. Retailers were among the biggest winners of the first complete rewriting of federal tax law in three decades. According to the NRF, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has helped revive the economy by eliminating a wide range of tax benefits for businesses and using the money saved to lower rates for all businesses, large and small. The corporate tax rate has been reduced to 21% from 35%, and small business “pass throughs” have received a 20% deduction. The measure also provided relief for middle-class taxpayers. Actually, the retail industry is expected to save $175 billion due to the reduction in the corporate tax rate, according to the NRF. Although it's too early to measure the direct benefits, some retailers have already announced investments in response to the tax cut, like an increase of the minimum salary to $11/hour for their employees.

The U.S. is the ultimate test market for exporters and is open to all kinds of new products and technologies. However, it is very spread out geographically and new products are subject to intense competition. The U.S. market is thus very demanding and requires a considerable amount of preparation, groundwork and long-term consistency. Numerous opportunities for growth exist in the U.S. retail market for retail providers of all sizes, including individual direct marketers or direct sellers, small- to medium-sized franchise unit owners, and large "big-box" store operators.
Market share

The supermarket & Grocery stores industry grew at a rate of 1%, reaching $654.6 billion in 2019. Market segmentation is drawn along various lines, including age group, ethnic group and even social and religious groups, which has forced distributors to adapt their strategies to this situation. One of the most marked consequences of this absence of homogeneity is the emergence in the past few years of "Speciality Stores" (Home Depot, Best Buy, etc.), which currently represent 11% of retail sales. In fact, American consumers stand out for their demanding nature, the importance they attach to price and their product disloyalty. It is thus incumbent upon distributors to continuously adapt themselves to the market and to engage in well-targeted marketing efforts in order to win consumer loyalty. According to the latest figures by USDA, grocery stores, including supermarkets and smaller grocery stores (except convenience stores) accounted for the largest share of store sales (92.2 percent), followed by convenience stores without gasoline (4.5 percent). Specialized food stores, including meat and seafood markets, produce markets, retail bakeries, and candy and nut stores, accounted for the remaining 3.3 percent of the total. According to NRF latest data, the main retailers in US are:

  • Walmart, with a turnover of $ 387.66 billions in retail sales
  • ($120.93 billion)
  • The Kroger Co ($119.70 billion)
  • Costco ($101.43 billion)
Retail Sector Organisations
National Retail Federation
Convenience Distribution Association (CDA)
International Council Shopping Centres
The Association for Convenience and Fuel Retailing (NACS)

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Actualitzacions: May 2022

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