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Future of retail emerging trends 2020

Future of Retail

As physical shopping around the world variously restarts post-lockdown, a number of organisations are, unsurprisingly, asking what the medium and long-term changes for the future of retail may be. While digital shifts are still at the fore for many, others are concerned about trends impacting retail from outside the sector as well as emerging consumer behaviours.

Ahead of a forthcoming workshop, we have collated a number of future trends that have been proposed by several experts in recent months. If you would like to let us know which you think may have greatest impact - and why, as well as what other shifts are missing from the current view, we will update and share a more detailed perspective in the next few weeks.


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Future of retail emerging trends 2020

  1. 1. Future Retail Trends A Selection of Insights from Multiple Expert Discussions 17 June 2020
  2. 2. Context This presentation collates several emerging issues that will impact the future of retail - mixing macro trends with sector changes as well as consumer shifts. It is designed to stimulate thinking and debate on future opportunities. Future of Retail Macro Sector Consumer Global Trends • Impacting many areas • Driving lasting change Customer Experiences • Setting expectations • Influencing behavior Retail Changes • Emerging in niches • Accelerating impact
  4. 4. Placemaking Ambitions The size, location and focus for shopping malls is increasingly in flux. Placemaking becomes a key shared ambition across cities, developers and communities. Successful execution relies on context and flexibility.
  5. 5. Proof of Immunity Public concerns about health security override worries about privacy. Facilitated by digital platforms, governments integrate immunity and health data with national identities. Access to buildings is based on proven immunity.
  6. 6. Smart Supply Chains As inventory again becomes an important differentiator, stores embrace more intelligent supply chains and logistic systems to ensure availability of the right products, at the right time, in the right place to every customer.
  7. 7. Urban Delivery Small, slow-moving, autonomous robots act as an accelerator of automation. They enable safe, clean, convenient and low-cost delivery and help to raise public confidence in the wider adoption of unmanned logistics.
  8. 8. Drones for Goods Investment in timely drone delivery services accelerates their deployment in multiple locations. Concerns about safety and collisions are overcome with automated UAV air traffic control as the operational range of drones expands.
  9. 9. Localised Production Some manufacturing shifts from centralised production to a smaller, distributed, resilient approach. 3D printing and localised sourcing play a part in enabling supply of bespoke products and spare parts in several, but not all, sectors
  10. 10. Reclaiming Car Parks The growth in ‘Mobility as a Service’ and self-driving cars frees up vast tracts of space for new development. Repurposing car parks extends retail interaction and experiences beyond existing store footprints.
  12. 12. Rethinking Space Post-Covid19 retailers rethink how better to use space. Maximising footfall targets are replaced by increasing basket value and low-touch interaction. Cashless payments dominate and staff-to-customer ratios are questioned.
  13. 13. Experience Centres Apple and Samsung are emulated as more brands seek to create interactive venues where you can try, but not buy, products. Immersive experiences are designed to engage, excite and educate customers and seed digital purchase.
  14. 14. Automated Retail Automation is progressively embedded within many areas of retail. While robots providing customer support and stocking shelves are the most visible, ‘hidden’ tech like facial recognition is changing the customer experience.
  15. 15. Flexible Formats As the pace of change for technology and consumer expectations accelerates, many retailers adopt increasingly flexible format options. More specific propositions and experiences are tailored to niche markets.
  16. 16. AI Integration The use of AI expands to enable the ‘seamless’ retail experience. Deep learning and chatbots are widely deployed: physical and digital experiences are blurred as machines automatically configure options.
  17. 17. Net Zero Retailers are challenged to be the most sustainable provider of products. Validated net zero footprints for carbon and water are transparently shared as brands seek reduce, reuse and recycle in the the progressively circular economy.
  19. 19. Shared Data Customers are progressively willing to share their data in exchange for better, more personal products and experiences. Retail brands compete to access and analyse information in real-time to tailor interaction, support and pricing.
  20. 20. Millennial Shopping Millennials and Gen Z form the majority of shoppers and want deeper, more social experiences. Although digitally informed and researched, interaction within physical stores with friends is an increasingly preferred option.
  21. 21. Access not Ownership The ‘lease everything’ business model extends to cover the majority of products. Tools and equipment join electronic devices, cars and clothing in being rented for defined periods - and not bought.
  22. 22. Conversational Commerce Customers are increasingly comfortable interacting with chat-bots. Many are more open, honest and flexible with machines than human support. Voice becomes a primary mechanism for frictionless payment.
  23. 23. Remote Interaction Rapidly advancing virtual and augmented reality systems go mainstream. More sectors embrace improved visualisation to envisage, configure and select new products and solutions in situ – all in advance of purchase.
  24. 24. Deep Personalisation Accessing and using more emotional data about shoppers is put at the core of ambitions to deliver greater bespoke tailoring for the individual: We rapidly move from mass personalisation to individual customisation.
  25. 25. Future Agenda, 84 Brook Street, London W1K 5EH +44 203 0088 141 | | @futureagenda