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The retail apocalypse: traditional retail chains are dying across America

A shopper at Best Buy.

Online shopping has changed the retail landscape, and brick-and-mortar stores are feeling it.

In the past decade, the way Americans shop has drastically changed. The rise of Amazon and online shopping, delivery services, and direct-to-consumer brands has given consumers more choices than ever in how and where they shop.

This shift has also helped fuel the decline of once-prosperous chain retailers like Sears, JC Penney, Payless, David’s Bridal, and others that have struggled to evolve and cater to the changing desires of shoppers.

Some retailers have tried to revamp stores or introduce other new features to increase foot traffic to brick-and-mortar stores, but these efforts have been met with mixed results. Many of these formerly successful retail chains have filed for bankruptcy, including Payless, Sears, Toys R Us, Claire’s, and more. And that’s created ripple effects for workers, too: Toys R Us workers fought for (and won) severance pay after the chain filed for bankruptcy, and Sears workers are still fighting for severance.

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