Given retail’s steady migration to platforms other than brick and mortar, and the latest advancements in retail trends, it looks like the future of retail is all set to drop a bombshell of tech trends. These promising technological innovations will turn the tables for the customers’ ease of shopping and revolutionize their entire shopping experience. The consumer retail trends are already fast-changing and are prompting several retailers to quickly tap the changing needs and act accordingly. Furthermore, the retail sector is going through a fundamental change as players in this sector are identifying new ways to use data and intelligence.
What does the future of retail look like?
The retail industry is evolving at an accelerated rate as a result of the proliferation of technologies and dynamic consumer behavior. Here’s a roundup of what the future of retail will look like in the next decade:
AR powered shopping decisions
Ever walked into a furniture store and imagined how a particular piece of furniture would look like in your house? Well with technology like AR and VR defining the future of retail, you wouldn’t have to leave things to your imagination anymore. In fact, augmented reality (AR) helps you use a smart mirror or screen to visualize the piece of furniture in the store in the room where you want to put it in your house. This advanced technology will also enable customers to see how clothes would look on them without having to actually do multiple trials of garments.
Personalized store experience
Retailers are now contemplating ways to use IoT devices, beacons, and mobile apps to provide users with a more personalized experience. These devices will be used to recommend and help customers to find the products that would best suit their needs and taste. This is one of the retail trends that are sure-shot at garnering increased customer loyalty and satisfaction. The use of such devices will be an essential part of the future of retail.
Robots to restock shelves
Prompt restocking is one of the major issues that retailers face as it becomes difficult to continuously monitor retail shelves, especially in the case of big retail stores. The future of retail is determined to eliminate such problems with the retail trends such as the use of robots. These robots roll through the aisles checking for misplaced items and empty shelf space. They then alert employees to order more. These robots will also make the future of retail more relaxed and easier for both the retailers and the customers.
Goodbye long checkout lines
Don’t we all just hate waiting in long checkout lines to get to the billing counter? Guess what, the future of retail is about revamping these hardships for customers. In-store cameras work with AI to scan the customers’ cart and automatically charge their respective account directly. This completely eliminates the requirement for customers to stand and wait for their turn to reach the billing counter. Amazon Go has already adopted such retail trends into their operations, which helps customers to skip the checkout line.
Retail trends are gradually shifting from the two-day delivery norm to same day delivery. This trend is expected to soon become a standard norm in the future of retail. With ample of options available in the market, modern customers are in no mood to wait several days to get their packages delivered to them. In fact, research suggests that in the next decade, most customers would prefer to opt out of services that do not provide them with same-day delivery options.
More number of smaller format stores
If you thought that small format stores would soon be a thing of the past, you might have to give that idea a second thought. In fact, small format stores are expected to be a prominent trend in the future of retail. Many retailers are now inclining towards an inverse approach to becoming smaller in size and cater to niche customers rather than trying to compete with the large catalog of online retailers and endless aisles of big format stores. Retailers can easily target young, affluent city dwellers with small format stores in downtown locations.
Tapping into the millennial mentality
The future of retail will greatly revolve around the tastes and preferences of the millennial crowd. A general trait observed in millennials is the increased brand loyalty and belief in virtues such as transparency, authenticity, and social responsibility. These virtues are rapidly becoming a norm in the retail industry and will soon become a non-negotiable. Young consumers want to know everything about the products that they purchase. So, brands that are genuine, down-to-earth, and honest in their communication will stay in the game.