Can you imagine a world without stores? Unless you've spent time in a very remote area with limited access to public transport, the likelihood is that you've never had to. Retail as we know it today has its roots in antiquity, with merchants in Ancient Greece setting their stalls in the agora and Romans using the forum as a marketplace.

While retail has evolved greatly over the centuries and is unrecognizable from the very early variety that operated on barter system, one thing is certain: Stores are part of the fabric of society, serving not only the need to provide goods for purchase but also addressing humans' desire for social interaction.

However, online commerce is changing the retail landscape, with an increasing number of consumers choosing to make some of their purchases online instead of going into a store. According to comScore, e-commerce in the United States grew by 13 percent in the third quarter of 2013, compared to the same period the previous year. During the holiday season, Americans spent $46.5 billion in online shopping from desktop computers alone.