Unprecedented Trends in Retail for 2020
Retail is going through a rapid and dramatic transformation. Even in this complex and uncertain context, busy consumers increasingly make decisions based on how fast they can buy and receive their purchases.
When retailers question how they are going to fulfill these high expectations, the answer is all about technology and convenience. While getting these two key elements right can have its challenges, they can also provide exceptional opportunities to get returning customers to spend more and attract new ones.
Now more than ever, traditional brick and mortar businesses must become progressive to keep up with innovative brands and with their customers exacting demands. So, forging ahead into 2020, retailers must look towards investments in technology to enable a seamless omnichannel customer experience.
Stay ahead of the “Now Culture”
What can retailers do to integrate their business into the consumer “Now Culture”? With consumers wanting instant gratification stores must speed up and broaden their services to be in the best possible position to respond immediately to consumer demand.
Having an e-commerce platform or an app is essential to providing your customers with the level of direct and anytime access that they expect. From the retailer operations perspective, managing both a physical and digital presence requires an omnichannel retail solution that can also support services such as real-time cross-channel access to inventory data and on-shelf product availability.
Additionally, to create a cohesive multi-channel experience, retailers require solutions that enable them to present and update inventory in real time, and restock efficiently. Retailers must also deliver on logistics and speed by offering flexible fulfillment options such as BOPIS, ship from store, easy returns and convenient delivery, in order to respond to evolving customer service standards.
The omnichannel customer experience is not complete without offering multiple, fast, and easy payment methods. So, it is essential to provide customers with a variety of payment options through digital wallet platforms such as Google Pay and Apple Pay, online financial platforms like PayPal, and instalment solutions to buy now and pay later like Afterpay.
New ways to market and engage
The omnichannel universe offers retailers valuable opportunities to draw in new customers and interact with current customers by keeping them engaged. Marketing through social shopping by leveraging platforms such as Pinterest or Instagram can help create an immersive storefront that takes your buyers from your shoppable posts directly to your website, in one tap.
Today’s consumer is looking for a seamless experience that feels personalized to their specific needs. The holistic approach of sharing stories and featured products through organic posts can create that unique experience that inspires your customers to share what they have discovered.
Supply chain technology
Achieving the new customer service standard of convenience would be quite a challenge without a smart and nimble supply chain. Successful retailers have overcome the challenge by leveraging the technological tools available. The latest retail management systems can automate warehousing and transportation operations, along with automated replenishments, which can save time and costs for both retailers and consumers.
A reliable supply chain is the cornerstone of accurate inventory management throughout your business. Accessing a global inventory management system that consolidates stock, provides speed and efficiency tracking stock, improved ability to move assets faster, and avoids overstocking.
By adopting newer technology, it becomes possible to leverage data to optimize the supply chain. Using data insights can give retailers the ability to mitigate disruptions in the chain by diversifying to include local suppliers. The retailer can thus avoid disappointing customers with stock-outs and gain socially conscious consumer loyalty by engaging in more sustainable retail practice.