As Americans rouse themselves from turkey-induced comas to do their Black Friday shopping this week, will they opt for the rush of going to the mall to shop amongst the crowds, or simply make purchases from the comforts of home?

In an era marked by the rise of e-commerce outlets like Amazon, along with the extinction of once-dominant chains like CompUSA and Circuit City, this question is surely top-of-mind for investors in the consumer sector.

To find answers and learn more about the latest trends dominating the consumer sector, we spoke with OppenheimerFunds’ Research Analyst Anna Toshach in the most recent episode of the OppenheimerFunds World Financial Podcast.

During our conversation, Toshach said one of the biggest changes she’s observed over the last decade is the dramatic transformation of shopper behavior across the consumer staples and discretionary categories.

“The most interesting change is the way people research and execute their shopping decisions,” said Toshach, who covers domestic core and large-cap growth equities for the Oppenheimer Main Street Equity Team. “People used to go to stores and see what was available, and that factored into how they decided what they needed or wanted … That’s all changed with the advent of online delivery.”

With a significant number of consumers now opting for online shopping, Toshach said retailers are now focused on giving people an experience they can’t find anywhere else. She points to malls incorporating amenities like high-end food and upscale movie theaters to lure shoppers.

Toshach even revealed the companies she thinks are proving to be the most effective at drawing shoppers to their brick-and-mortar stores, including Apple, and athletic wear maker Lululemon, whose winning formula includes in-store yoga classes.

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