This report provides a study of the retail sector, which is one of the biggest in Europe in terms of the number of enterprises active and individuals employed. The study aims to provide practical insights on revitalising small retailers in urban and rural areas. The underlying objective is achieved through identifying the main trends, challenges and opportunities faced by small retailers, and outlining what types of good practices have been put into place to support these enterprises in city-centres, including highlights on the situation of small retailers located in rural areas.
Besides the development of the sector and the specific features small retailers have to cope with - less time, financial means and specialised human capital - their performance is also affected by other contextual forces and environmental factors. Tourism, mobility and urban policy areas play an important role in promoting engaging centres, which small retailers benefit from.
Next to the description of good practices, the study contains a series of recommendations for the EESC which could be used to help the retail sector, as well as insights on the overall architecture and content of an EU database or platform on small retailers.