SWOT analysis method, creating a sense of community, and renewal upgrades are some creative ways that REITS or shopping mall owners, or office building owners are using to reinvent themselves and attract and retain tenants.
1. SWOT Analysis Method
- In 2020, real estate investment trusts have been adversely affected, dropping 30% as the coronavirus pandemic stalled businesses, forcing offices, restaurants, hotels, and malls to close down.
- REITS and shopping mall owners have, therefore, turned to use Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) analysis method to determine their ability to attract and retain tenants. Through this method, they can determine if a particular store or mall is in an attractive location. Strengths include factors such as the location of the property, leading customers to the business. Weaknesses of the property may include low visible entry points and other distractions that could discourage customers from walking into the mall or office. Opportunities include nearby businesses that could attract more foot traffic to a mall or office, while threats look at a rival chain attracting more foot traffic.
- Through a proper SWOT analysis, property owners find ways to add an edge to maximize strengths and opportunities and to minimize the weaknesses and threats. In this case, they are investing in amenities such as restructuring lobby areas to match up to modern designs, installing expansive indoor/outdoor work areas, and onsite services such as dry cleaning. Even though these amenities were previously considered a luxury, they can add an edge to a property that attracts and retains tenants.
2. Creating a Sense of Community
- Tenants are likely to stay or rent a building with a sense of community regardless of cultural, social, or background diversity. More building owners are creating tenant-based communities by adding new roles to property managers, such as curating customized customer experiences through events and programming. More buildings today have book and travel clubs, tastings, and speakers on relevant topics in line with the tenant base, among other interests that bond tenants.
- More studies indicate that a sense of community is a high factor that has continued to be used to retain and attract new tenants in New York and other states in the U.S. Amenities such as co-working spaces, movie nights, and general multipurpose areas have a way of connecting tenants and creating a sense of community regardless of varying backgrounds.
- Property owners understand that even as time and the workplace continue to evolve, people still desire to interact. Thus, building owners and property managers design and integrate amenities that foster a more interactive, exciting, and collaborative environment for tenants to spend in and out of office. Building owners also understand that savvy employers are looking for more than just a lobby, a deli, or an office. As such, this trend has inspired in-office improvements with amenities such as coffee bars, game rooms, and state-of-the-art lobbies where people can interact.
3. Offering Renewal Upgrades and Incentives
- Attracting and retaining tenants is a challenge, and property managers devise methods such as renewal upgrades and incentives to keep tenants. By upgrading a property’s value, a building owner can not only retain old tenants but attract new ones. In this case, property owners are providing tenants with a menu of upgrade items such as light fixtures, new tiles, or repainting their walls, which fosters goodwill.
- Since customers are looking for an experience every time they go to a mall, shopping mall owners across America are moving away from traditional amenities as they look to attract non-traditional tenants. Thus, these owners attempt to reinvigorate and revive shopping malls and offices to give a modern retail outlook. Some common upgrades today include; Wi-Fi hotspots, multipurpose spaces, people counting solutions to weigh mall traffic, and entertainment hubs.
- Building owners are also using technology to upgrade shopping malls and offices to reduce friction. Through smart building design and engineering, building owners give their buildings a competitive edge by eliminating pain points, which plays an instrumental role in retaining and attracting new tenants. The new upgrades are prioritizing convenience, access, and luxury. Through technology, building owners create frictionless experiences by removing things such as turnstiles, long lines, and expediting elevator services.