Consumers are taking control in 2019, acting as the driving force behind changes in retail. Over the past decade, we’ve seen a huge transformation in the retail industry, as it responds to not only advances in technology but most importantly in answer to customer demands. Retailers need to adapt quickly to changes in attitudes, demographics and consumer preferences in order to stay ahead of the game. To help you do that, here are some of the top retail trends for 2019 that will continue to shape global retail growth.
Brands as culture
As consumers increasingly shop with their hearts rather than their heads, we’re noticing a global trend that consumers have deeper pockets for companies with a strong brand story and sense of social responsibility. See Forbes list of 2019’s most sustainable companies here.
With consumers having instant access to so many options, it comes down to a lot more than just cost. Faced with two identical products, consumers are more likely to opt for the product or brand that they feel connected to.
Brands looking to stand out will need to build a strong sense of identity that connects with customers at all touch points – from online to instore and across all social media and brand communications.
Shop here for compostable packaging.
Faster eCommerce shipping
Customer expectations are quickly changing around acceptable eCommerce shipping times. Gone are the days when they were happy to wait a week or more for their purchases – now, customers want their goods as quickly as possible.
In fact, a study that we did showed that 61 per cent of customers expected 1-3 hour shipping, despite the fact that only 8 per cent of those surveyed offered same day shipping as an option.
eCommerce operators looking to differentiate themselves need to be on top of fast shipping because this trend is set to stay well beyond 2019.
Shippit’s Pack & Ship and Tracking & Notifications feature streamlining the entire fulfilment process, from packing to unpacking. Fast fulfilment expedites packaging and carrier decisions, so you can pack, and ship, faster.
Convenient subscription eCommerce
The biggest retail trends in 2019 relate to delivering an exceptional customer experience based on what the consumer wants. One way to do this that is gaining traction is through subscription shopping, where products are curated to the customer’s preferences and delivered to their door on a regular basis.
This is a retail model that has seen substantial growth since 2010 and only looks set to increase. Customers are getting a service rather than just a product, and subscriptions allow you to offer a tangible benefit as well as a personalised offering.
Businesses with a subscription model:
New models of retail
A quick walk through a shopping centre will tell you retail is changing, and the focus is now on creating culture rather than just selling the product. But this also applies to eCommerce, with websites becoming more sophisticated and offering more content to keep customers engaged.
With millennials increasingly valuing experiences over things, there’s a trend to offer more interactive experiences. From in-store demonstrations and freebies to interactive apps and strong online communities, in 2019 traditional shopping elements need to be combined with technologies and experiences to add new layers to the retail experience.
Glassons launches new technology in its new and refurbished stores, including a jukebox system that allows customers to pick their own song, service-focused interactive fitting rooms, and mobile handheld terminals allowing staff to make sales on the spot instead of going over to counters.
With customers demanding more choices around how and when they make purchases, retailers need to be available in more spaces. Instore, online or via an app, with a choice of delivery carrier, delivery method, and the option to click and collect – online retailers need to give their customers the gift of choice.
It can be a tough ask for small retailers to maintain a presence across online stores, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, online market places, and brick-and-mortar stores, and even harder to coordinate fulfilment from all these touchpoints.
Partnering with a cloud-based shipping platform like Shippit can help you plug into omnichannel shipping and give your customers access to choice. Ship-from-store adds value to your customers while streamlining inventory and increasing profit potential.
Ship-from-store gives retailers of all sizes the ability to roll out low-cost, highly-efficient distribution networks by turning their shelves into potential fulfilment centres which are closer to their customers.
Managing multiple locations used to be a logistical nightmare. But, with Shippit’s cloud-based services and individual dashboards, each location can stay on top of the fulfilment process to ensure the shortest and most cost-effective route for every single order.
The latest retail trends in global business growth come down to two things: technology and consumer preferences. By embracing these retail trends and putting systems in place to help them become long-term strategies, you’ll be able to look to the remainder of 2019 and beyond for positive growth opportunities.