You've heard it before, but now there's startling new data on the rise of the off-the-mall discounter. According to a study conducted by retail consultant Custom Growth Partners, mall tenants, especially department stores, saw their market share drop to 19 percent for 2002, compared with 38 percent in 1995.
And things are only getting worse for the department stores. Wal-Mart was the top pick for women's clothing with more than 20 percent of consumers polled for BIGResearch's monthly retail ratings report. Power center-prone Kohl's came in second with 7.3 percent. And department stores trailed, with 6.3 choosing JCPenney, 3.7 percent choosing Macy's and only 2.9 percent choosing Dillard's.