Retail Trends

It is impossible not to notice the ever-changing trends in retail, regardless of whether you like to shop or not. Retail trends are very relevant due to their ever-so-quickly changing nature. With just a few taps on your mobile, you can shop and get everything delivered to your house or any other location. And this is just one of the many but very significant trends the retail industry has seen. If retailers are not up to date with trends, their businesses might suffer. Read more to learn about the latest retail trends and how they change the retail game.

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Table of contents

    Retail Trends Definition

    Retail trends refer to all the changes that occur in the retail industry. Change happens in all aspects of the retail sector from time to time. In fact, some changes can be so rapid that they can become challenging to keep up with. A new change is what is referred to as a trend.

    Trends change with changes in customer expectations and changes in technology. As a result, retailers must change how they operate and interact with customers to stay relevant.

    Retail trends refer to the changes in the retail industry concerning customer expectations, technological advancements, and other operations in the industry.

    Trends have evolved to make the lives of both buyers and sellers easier.

    Major Trends in Retailing

    With trends changing the retail game, retailers must adapt how they operate. The list below names a few of the significant trends in the retailing industry.

    1. Omnichannel Retail - with the gap between online and offline shopping closing, it has become increasingly difficult for retailers to survive with just one distribution channel.

    Omnichannel retail is the method of selling to customers using multiple channels, both physical and digital.

    Omnichannel retailing allows customers to view and buy items either from a physical store or an online store.

    64% of people prefer hybrid shopping and now find it more convenient than traditional methods.1

    2. Use of AI - AI or Artificial Intelligence is helping both retailers and customers. It helps customers by understanding their needs and matching them to the right products and also connects the retailers to potentially interested buyers. AI saves customers time spent trying to find an item. This enhances the customer's interaction or experience with the brand - AI can help to provide a more personalized experience with the data it collects from every customer.

    3. Same-Day Delivery - Businesses that can offer same-day delivery have a competitive edge over those that cannot. Customers prefer their purchased items to be delivered rather than picking them up. Customers tend to buy more when a retailer offers same-day delivery.

    Retail trends Delivery StudySmarterFig. 1 - A company delivering orders

    4. Social Commerce - setting up a store on social media is another retail trend that has been going on for quite some time now.

    Selling on social media platforms such as Instagram or Facebook is known as social commerce.

    Social media influences 69% of people to make a purchase.2

    With people spending more time on their devices, social commerce is a growing retail trend that has proved to be a very successful retail channel.

    5. Interactive Retail - this trend involves the incorporation of VR or Virtual Reality to interact with customers. This is because online shopping is becoming increasingly popular, and VR can help brands communicate with their customers digitally. This technology can help customers make more informed decisions by virtually consulting a salesperson.

    Retail Analytics Trends

    Following retail analytic trends helps a business optimize its operations and increase sales. Given below are a few retail analytical trends which will help businesses.

    1. Hyper-Personalized Experiences - with the ability to collect customer information due to technological advancements, brands can create a better-personalized experience for their customers. These experiences help customers bond with the brand faster and increase loyalty.

    2. Predicting Spending and Demand - retail analytical trends can help predict spending demand trends by analyzing customers' purchase patterns. Businesses can also identify regular customers and send notifications of deals and offers to attract them. Predicting purchase behavior can help companies to optimize their warehouse or supply chain to ensure optimal stocking.

    3. Deal with Labour Shortage - retail analytics can help businesses optimize certain business operations such as tracking orders, supply chain operations, tracking customer satisfaction, and so on. Retail analytics helps retailers cope with the decline in available labor. Technological advancements have also helped businesses develop tools that can help replace manual laborers.

    What is Retail Analytics?

    Retail analytics is the process of tracking and analyzing previous occurrences in the retail industry to forecast trends that will help retailers make more informed decisions. Marketers can use retail analytics to optimize operations and enhance the business.

    Retail and Technology Trends

    Retail trends are accelerated by technological advancements that make life and shopping easier for customers. Given below are technological trends that are shaping the retail industry.

    1. Contactless Stores - such stores decrease shopping time and make shopping more straightforward and fun! In a contactless store, people can just scan the price of the selected item and checkout at the end. They can pay digitally via online banking.

    2. AI Security Cameras - such cameras can analyze human behavior and detect suspicious human behavior to alert authorities.

    3. Retail Video Analytics - much like AI security cameras, video analytics use cameras to study customer behavior to get a better insight into them, including customer engagement, recurring problems, customer experiences, etc.

    4. Retail Demand Planning - this helps retailers predict the demand for products, which helps them optimize many internal operations. Businesses can better manage internal operations such as cash flow and stock management. Marketers can also plan promotions and sales accordingly.

    Retail Industry Trends Examples

    Retail stores use different analytical and technological trends. Some of the trends used in many brands around us are shown below:

    Retail Industry Trends Examples: The use of AI

    Artificial intelligence can be used for different purposes in a retail store, a few of which are listed below.

    Amazon's "just walk out" stores make shopping easier with the help of the Amazon Go app. Customers just have to scan a barcode on their mobiles when entering the store. They simply take the products they wish and leave the store. AI cameras recognize which items the customer has picked up from the shelves, and payment for the items is done through the customer's Amazon account.

    Amazon is a brand that uses AI. The brand, with the help of customers' voices, gives them shopping recommendations.

    IBM's Watson uses AI to understand a buyer's current buying condition, enabling retailers to engage their customers with a more personalized shopping experience.

    Retail Industry Trends Examples: Omnichannel Retail

    An example of omnichannel retail is shown below.

    Starbucks provides a loyalty card program for frequent customers through which they can collect reward points. They can also use the Starbucks app to send gifts, order drinks before visiting the store, and find nearby stores.

    The Disney App helps its users make reservations, make an itinerary, and plan what rides to take according to their interests even before entering the park. This allows visitors to make the most out of their time.

    Retail Industry Trends Examples: Same-Day Delivery

    Same-day delivery is not a feature offered by all delivery services. Furthermore, these services mainly offer same-day delivery to their premium customers.

    Amazon Prime offers same-day delivery to their customers with Prime membership.

    Retail trends are, therefore, ever-changing and continually evolving to make the retail industry more accessible to every customer.

    Retail Trends - Key takeaways

    • Retail trends refer to the changes in the retail industry concerning customer expectations, technological advancements, and other operations in the industry.
    • Omnichannel retail, use of AI, same-day- delivery, social commerce, and interactive retail are a few of the significant retail trends.
    • Hyper-personalized experiences, predicting spending and demand, and dealing with labor shortages are a few retail analytical trends.
    • The use of AI security cameras and retail video analytics, contactless stores, and retail demand planning are a few technological trends in the retail industry.

    References

    1. Shopper Experience Index. Bazaarvoice. 2022. https://www.bazaarvoice.com/resources/shopper-experience-index-2022/?&aid=SC40571B2&utm_campaign=lets+get+visual&utm_content=2022+sei&utm_medium=paid+search&utm_source=google&gclid=CjwKCAjwg5uZBhATEiwAhhRLHmhOcyMXgMIl7ZigCwvIckAyilrRzhVBbvqR0DzyPKinu_Y3YGepUhoC6oYQAvD_BwE#bvblock-tabs-block_6245f60c21ad6
    2. Shopper Experience Index. Bazaarvoice. 2022. https://www.bazaarvoice.com/resources/shopper-experience-index-2022/?&aid=SC40571B2&utm_campaign=lets+get+visual&utm_content=2022+sei&utm_medium=paid+search&utm_source=google&gclid=CjwKCAjwg5uZBhATEiwAhhRLHmhOcyMXgMIl7ZigCwvIckAyilrRzhVBbvqR0DzyPKinu_Y3YGepUhoC6oYQAvD_BwE#bvblock-tabs-block_6245f60c21ad6
    Frequently Asked Questions about Retail Trends

    How far in advance must retailers anticipate trends? 

    Retailers have to anticipate trends at least a year or two before it hits the market.

    What are the current trends in retailing? 

    Omnichannel retail, use of AI, same-day- delivery, social commerce, and interactive retail are a few of the significant current retail trends.

    What major trends and developments are retailers facing? 

    Omnichannel retail, use of AI, same-day- delivery, social commerce, and interactive retail are a few of the significant retail trends. In terms of technologically advanced trends are the use of AI security cameras and retail video analytics, contactless stores, and retail demand planning.

    How retailers are adapting to the customer and technology trends? 

    Customer demands change with technological advancements, and retailers want to adopt measures to help them make their lives easier. Therefore, retailers are now adopting omnichannel retailing, using AI technologies to interact with customers digitally, selling through social commerce, and so on. They now try to provide hyper-personalized experiences, use technology to predict supply and demand, and deal with labor shortages to optimize retail industry operations. This will also ensure a better shopping experience for customers.

    How consumer trends in grocery shopping are changing retail? 

    Consumers want a more personalized and easy experience. Brands like Amazon are trying contactless stores where customers can scan as they pick up an item from the supermarket and just make the payment digitally. This eliminates the hassle, chaos, and time lost at the cashier. Supermarkets are also analyzing customer behavior which will help them analyze the store layout and customer flow in a supermarket to improve customer experience.

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