I thought I knew retail; maybe you thought you did too? Well, maybe it’s time for a reality check. Because today, as we know, 20th century physical retail is under fire like never before. Faced with threats from all sides, but especially from online, it must focus on doing what the e-commerce techno whizzkids can’t; namely delivering good old fashioned face to face retailing based on an intimate knowledge of the customer. Customer experience is great but above all make me feel wanted, valued. Retail is everywhere and the very meaning of what it is to be a retailer is constantly being redefined but I would argue that to find retail at its purest you need to venture somewhere other than the e-commerce giants, the huge shopping malls and the out of town retail parks. Independent retailers are a different breed to the chains, they are independent for a reason and with this comes great autonomy, a liberating factor which even the best chains find hard to replicate. One such example is Bettahomes located in the heart of the Surrey commuter belt. To call this a hardware store would be to do it a disservice for this is hardware meets garden center meets pet shop meets yarn meets…..well, just about everything! Read more at Forbes.