Westroads Mall takes on a new role: bridging e-commerce with brick & mortar

Omaha's Westroads Mall is adding new shops in the age where most other malls are dead or dying.
Published: Apr. 28, 2023 at 6:55 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Westroads Mall in Omaha is taking on a whole new role. Once a destination place, the mall is becoming a bridge to the digital world.

Major department stores used to be the main anchors of malls all across America. However, retailers are finding a new niche.

In an age when malls seem to be dying out, new businesses are helping Westroads Mall to thrive.

Take TikTok, one of the most popular social media platforms in the world. Tiktokker Trendway just opened at Westroads, selling items that are trending online.

“The time is changing,” says owner Rufat Soltanov. “The business is changing. So, it’s very important to be up to date.”

Tiktokker Trendway is just one of three new stores at Westroads that is linked to the digital world. Legendary Wolf Games, a place for gamers to come together recently opened next to Von Maur. Fix Max, which repairs cellphones and tablets is getting ready to open across from Tiktokker Trendway.

Shoppers say they all go together.

“A physical store is definitely better than an online store because of the experience,” said Daniel Clemens of Omaha. “Something catches your eye. You see it, you grab it. You see if you like it or not.”

Westroads Mall opened more than 50 years ago. Though it’s had its ups and downs, Westroads has managed to survive long after many of its anchor stores closed shop.

General Manager Ryan Conlon says mixed-use malls with non-traditional stores are breathing new life into old shopping malls.

“Every community has at least one thriving mall depending on the size there might be two or three. Westroads is the good mall that’s been over here that everyone knows,” Conlon said.