Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a account? Log In

Who Is Shopping at Malls?

Shira Petrack
February 14, 2024
Who Is Shopping at Malls?

With shopping center vacancy rates now lower than they were pre-COVID, we dove into the demographic and psychographic trade area data for leading Indoor Malls, Open-Air Shopping Centers, and Outlet Malls to understand who visited malls in 2023. 

Shopping Center Types Draw a Variety of Audiences 

Diving into the demographics of the trade areas of the various mall types in 2023 reveal both similarities and differences between the typical visitor to Indoor Malls, Open-Air Shopping Centers, and Outlet Malls. 

In all three mall types, the median trade area household income (HHI) in the three mall types was higher than the nationwide median HHI of $69.5K (according to the STI: Popstats 2022 dataset). But Open-Air Shopping Centers drew the highest income visitors, with a trade area median HHI of $87.8K in 2023. The trade area of Open-Air Shopping Centers also had the lowest share of Households with Children and the highest share of singles (One-Person and Non-Family Households). 

Outlet Malls lay at the other end of the spectrum, with a trade area median trade HHI of $73.9K, the highest share of Households with Children, and the lowest share of single households. And the median HHI and household composition for the trade area of Indoor Malls stood between those of the other two types. 

Different Family Segments for Different Mall Types

Even though Outlet Malls tend to draw the highest, and Open-Air Shopping Centers draw the lowest share of family visitors (Households with Children), diving deeper into various family segments reveals a more nuanced picture. 

For example, the trade areas of Outlet Malls do indeed contain the highest shares of the “Family Union” and “Promising Families” segments – defined by Experian: Mosaic as blue-collar families and young families in starter homes, respectively. But Open-Air Shopping Centers tend to draw the highest share of the more affluent “Flourishing Families” segment – perhaps thanks to the Open-Air Shopping Centers’ higher trade area median HHI. 

So while the demographic analysis can provide an overall snapshot of the various mall types’ audience, diving into the psychographics can yield a higher-resolution picture of the types of shoppers frequenting each shopping center category. 

Looking Ahead to 2024 

For the most part, malls – especially Indoor Malls and Open-Air Shopping Centers – succeeded in exceeding or staying close to 2022 visit levels last year, despite the economic headwinds. And while January data indicates that the space may be entering a challenging period, there are plenty of reasons to think that the dip in early 2024 foot traffic is just a temporary setback driven by a unique set of circumstances. As the year continues to unfold, tracking visits in this sector will offer more insights into the state of the 2024 consumer. 

For more data-driven retail insights, visit

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Text Link
Mall Index
Text Link
Indoor Malls
Text Link
Open-Air Malls
Crocs’ Footwear Fairytale
Who Attends NCAA Final Four Events?
Eclipse Fever: How Did the (Retail and Hospitality) Stars Align?
Exploring Albertsons Companies’ Grocery Growth Mall Index: March 2024 Recap – Malls Rise Again Office Index: March 2024 Recap
Florida Spring Break Break-Up? Travelers Still Love Florida!
Provo-Orem and Ogden-Clearfield Emerging As Utah Hotspots 
Three Formulas for Experiential Retail in 2024
Aldi & Lidl Making The Cut
Texas Suburbs on the Rise
Exploring Luxury Hotel Brands’ Guest Segmentation
The St. Patrick’s Day Effect
How Can JOANN Make a Comeback?
Panera Bread Well Positioned for Possible IPO
Who Will Benefit From Family Dollar’s Downsizing?
Dave & Buster’s and Main Event Entertainment: Food and Fun for Everyone
Darden Brands: Location Analytics and Consumer Behavior
Nike and lululemon: a Strong 2023, Sprinting into 2024
Where Is Retail and Dining Foot Traffic Thriving in Early 2024? White Paper Recap – February 2024
Three Retail & Dining Chains That May Surprise in 2024
Specialty Discount Chains Rock Retail Therapy Mall Index: February 2024 Office Index: February 2024 Recap
Ulta Beauty Continues To Shine
First Watch Sails Into 2024
Hibbett Sports and DICK’S Sporting Goods: A Psychographic Analysis
Checking in With Discount & Dollar Stores
Peeking Behind The Curtain: Movie Theaters in 2023 and Beyond
Diving Into Brick-and-Mortar Eyewear
Getting Into Gear: Exploring The Auto Part Industry
Recapping Valentine’s Day 2024 Foot Traffic Trends
Fitness: A Strong Start to 2024
Dutch Bros. Continues To Percolate Visits
Super Bowl 2024:’s Postgame Foot Traffic Analysis
CAVA & sweetgreen Are On the Rise
Hats Off For Off-Price
Who Is Shopping at Malls?
Drilling Down Into Home Improvement
Walmart, Target, Costco & Superstore Space 2023 Recap
Catching Up With Shake Shack and Wingstop
Something To Chew On: Demographic Shifts at Steakhouse Chains Office Index: Looking Back at 2023
Recapping RBI & Yum! Brands’ 2023 Foot Traffic Performance White Paper Recap – January 2024
Who Shops at Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters?
Three Taco Chains to Watch in 2024
Starbucks and Dunkin’: 2023 in Four Data Points
Who Visits CVS and Walgreens?
Fashionably Frugal: Apparel in 2023
Catching Up With Fast Food
The Grocery Sector in 2023: An End-of-Year Recap
3 Mall & Shopping Center Trends for 2024
Bakery Chains Rising To The Top and Esri Partner to Deliver Geospatial Analytics
Tampa Tourism Trends
Going For The Green: The Changing Dynamics Of Country Clubs
Christmas Day Dining Recap
Major Urban Shopping Districts – Holiday Season Recap Office Index: December 2023 Recap
Recapping the 2023 Holiday Shopping Season White Paper Recap – December 2023
7 Retail & Dining Segments to Watch in 2024
Diving Into Holiday Season Favorites
Super Saturday and Christmas Eve Eve: A Winning Combination
3 Budget Grocery Chains Finishing 2023 On a High Note
Making It In America: International Chicken Chains Bring The Heat
Domestic Tourism at a Glance: A Q3 2023 Roundup
Five Pizza Chains On The Rise
Jewelry Brands Taking Advantage of the DTC Opportunity
Secondhand News: Kids' Thrift Shops
Recapping 2023’s Dining M&As
MetLife Stadium Kicks Off Football Season Office Index: November 2023 Recap
Small Coffee Chains Brewing Big Success White Paper Recap – November 2023
Thanksgiving Travel 2023 Recap
Checking in With Nike and Lululemon
Black Friday 2023 Retail Recap
Starbucks’ 2023 Holiday Menu & Red Cup Day Performance
Turkey Wednesday 2023
Who Attended the 2023 Pickleball Championship? 
Three Surprising Holiday Shopping Trends
What’s in Store for Ulta Beauty This Holiday Season?
Best Buy and Department Stores: A Holiday Deep Dive
Discount & Dollar Stores: Strength Toward The End of the Year
The State of Off-Price Retail: Discounts Seal The Deal
Placer Mall Index Recap: October 2023 Office Index: October 2023 Recap
Retail Corridors Ahead of the 2023 Holiday Season
California, Here Gap Comes
Checking in With Home Improvement
Getting Into the Glasses Game: Warby Parker Takes Over
Fitness Positioned for a Strong 2023 Finish
White Paper Recap: October 2023
Coffee Giants Brewing Up Business
Popeyes and Burger King Lead the Way
Diving into Yum!
Looking Ahead to Black Friday 2023