Published March 6, 2022

Data Shows Minot is a Strong Regional Market

Written by
Jasahd Stewart
| The Dakotan
Minot City Council listens to the Retail Coach presentation on Feb. 22. [Photo: Jasahd Stewart/The Dakotan]
Minot City Council listens to the Retail Coach presentation on Feb. 22. [Photo: Jasahd Stewart/The Dakotan]

MINOT — A national retail consulting group recently shared analytics through geofencing and heat maps on consumer traffic in Minot to help the city recruit retailers and restaurants, revealing it is a strong regional market.

The Retail Coach's data showed Minot pulls in a healthy amount of business from throughout the region, despite not being along the interstate like Bismarck or Fargo.

“Pulling from all the way south of Bismarck, Devils Lake, Belcourt, Kenmare, Williston. You know, like I said, this just proves that you all are a regional market,” said Kyle Cofer, representative of The Retail Coach, which is a national retail consulting firm based in Texas.

Minot City Manager Harold Stewart has a history of partnering with Retail Coach and says he has been impressed with their services.

“Overall positive. All the groups they met with saw potential uses for the data, information, and work Retail Coach is doing. All saw it in different ways, but all saw it as helpful. People were appreciative for the city taking the lead on securing this type of analysis and effort on behalf of the community,” Stewart said.

In regard to the decline of mall activity in various parts throughout the nation, Stewart said, “I think it is still a valid concept in North Dakota due to our climate, the long winters, and those kinds of things, so I think it still has value here and think our mall is performing well. The challenge, I think, will be convincing these retailers to locate in that facility when that concept is being unsuccessful and changed throughout the rest of the country.”

He said he believes “the data is strong” to support that the mall brings in many people from throughout the region and looks forward to new retailers filling the vacancies in a mall he says is still ideal for North Dakota.

Regarding downtown Minot, Stewart says he sees a “resurgence” of new business beginning for flourish downtown. “New unique restaurants, entertainment venues… we have Gourmet Chef, the bookstore, and multiple types of businesses that continue to draw people,” he explained. “And we have the new City Hall downtown, the replacement of infrastructure, and some street scaping.”

He said he did see some need for “reinvesting and filling vacancies,” however, his overall analysis was that the downtown area seems to be doing “very well.”

Interim Director Josh Wolsky of Minot’s Downtown Business & Professionals Association (DBPA) had the opportunity to examine Retail Coach’s recent market research for Minot.

“Minot’s market and shopping region, where we pull from, is very significant… I think what The Retail Coach shared with us is that we have a very strong market, and we have a lot to offer. Now we have the data to prove it,” Wolsky explained.

In examining the data, Wolsky said that the DBPA is cognizant of the different kinds of business models that are out there and gave suggestions on what to be mindful of.

“We do see a difference between businesses that come to Minot and contribute to helping Minot become more prosperous,” Wolsky said, “and there is another business model that is out there as we see characterized as wealth mining or prosperity mining, where they come into a community, and they pull the wealth out and go off to another location.”

A follow up meeting has not yet been set with The Retail Coach, however, the data demonstrates that Minot has many opportunities to prosper.

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