It may be time for the brick-and-mortar retailers to try something new.
Macy's shares plunged Wednesday after the company reported disappointing earnings and guidance. On the earnings call, CEO Terry Lundgren indicated that consumers don't seem particularly interested in buying clothing right now; he also urged investors to "remember that some of our boldest and best ideas are developed during these down cycles," highlighting the stock's performance since the financial crisis.
The issue is that now, the overall economy is doing just fine. That suggests that the issues that Macy's are running into could be just that — Macy's problems.
Either way, some fresh ideas appear to be required.
"They're going back to the box and trying to figure out, 'How can we be most relevant per every square foot of this box?' " JPMorgan analyst Matt Boss said Wednesday on CNBC's "Power Lunch."
Referring to department stores in general, Boss opined that "the entire sector does need to shrink, but I don't think that the concept is irrelevant. I think it can be reinvented."
"The business is shifting, but they'll get through it," agreed Odeon Capital analyst Rick Snyder, in a Wednesday interview on "Trading Nation."
Responding to speculation that the Internet is gobbling brick and mortar's lunch — as well as its breakfast, dinner and midnight snack — Snyder held the line.
"The digital side of the equation is still a very small percentage of total sales, and particularly with apparel, people need to be in the stores. They need to have some place to look at the merchandise, to touch it, to feel it and to have that interpersonal interaction," Snyder said.