These changes have resulted in a shift of power towards consumers, who now expect a seamless omni-channel experience as standard. Retailers therefore face a major challenge – to evolve their understanding of consumer behaviour, and adopt new approaches to survive.
New mindsets for 2020
Rethinking the retail experience
Changes in consumer behaviour are forcing retailers to offer unique experiences or services that cannot be replicated online. Increasing numbers are focusing on shopping-as-entertainment – integrating retail with a social or media-driven experience. Technology will need to help customers enjoy themselves, save time and find what they are looking for – as well as combining their physical and digital experiences.
Emerging food business models
Food delivery apps and the so-called ‘dark’ or ‘cloud’ kitchens that serve online food orders are both continuing to grow rapidly. An increasing number of hotels are leasing kitchen space to such operators, while centrally located car parks are also being used to house mobile kitchens. However, those restaurants that offer a truly unique experience will continue to thrive.
Social and environmental issues
Consumers increasingly want to be sure the products they buy have been produced to the highest standards in terms of chemicals, animal welfare and sustainability. Many are becoming less interested in owning material goods and more open to the idea of renting products to reduce waste. The increased numbers of home delivery vehicles on the road are also creating congestion and pollution, and cities will increasingly aim to mitigate these effects.
In our Retail Outlook report, we look in depth at how the sector is changing and what impact new technologies are having.