SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – As many as one-in-five shopping malls across the country are expected to close over the next five years according to a new report from Credit Suisse.

Up to 25 percent of American malls are expected to shut their doors over the next several years, and one local mall employee said she sees fewer shoppers, and more store closures.

“Tons of stores closing,” Brittany Tower told 22News. “Brookstone turned into gift and grab. Guess just closed. Pretty reputable stores have closed and they turn them into European retailers that we’ve never even heard of, and even those stores are closing.”

More than eight thousand stores are expected to close this year alone according to a new report by Credit Suisse. That’s more than ever before.

Much of the problem is due to the increase in online shopping, but small retailers told 22News, they aren’t struggling the same as the shopping malls.

Independent retailers said customers today are looking for a service that big malls can’t seem to provide.

“I’ve opened the store at 6 o’clock in the morning for a customer leaving for a trip, I’ve kept the store open until 7 o’clock at night,” Co-owner of In Chic Boutique told 22News. “I think that’s old time retailing, and the way that things should be done. But customers know the service you’re providing and if they have a problem you are there for them.”

Construction of more and more shopping malls for fewer and fewer customers in recent years has also hurt big retailers.

The new report predicts as more shopping malls close, internet sales will increase by nearly twenty percent.