The number of shops increased in 2021 for the first time in ten years, reports Statistics Netherlands (CBS). As of January 1 this year, CBS counted about 83,800 store locations, 655 more than at the beginning of 2021. The number of stores selling food rose in particular. The number of bookstores fell the most.
The number of stores decreased during the pandemic period as branches disappeared in 2020. Compared to the beginning of 2020, there are 0.4 percent fewer stores. The number of stores in the Netherlands peaked in 2010, at which time there were over 13,000 brick shops more than at the beginning of this year.
Clothing stores make up the largest group of all stores. About one in six stores sell clothing. Household goods stores and supermarkets both account for eight percent of the store base.
While the number of physical stores has been declining since 2010, the number of online stores has increased significantly. In 2020, online shopping took off due to Covid-19 and its accompanying lockdowns. The number of online stores also grew strongly last year, by 28 percent.