The six most important trends for retailers

For sure, conditions for retailers have changed permanently, especially in light of digitalisation. However, that’s no reason to hide or stick your head in the sand. On the contrary, only those who receive change with open arms can emerge as winners. The IFH Cologne has looked at the various developments, guided by the central question of what will make for a successful retail trade in the future.

“The trends identified by the IFH Cologne have many consequences for the trade. For example, the current changes require an analysis-based understanding of the customer and, in the long-term, two customer loyalty systems for true customer centricity,” says Dr. Kai Hudetz, Managing Director of the IFH Cologne, explaining the latest results.

Consumer market behaviour is becoming ever more multi-optional, and successful retail concepts have to be consistently customer-oriented. That is how the IFH Cologne summarises current developments. The industry insider has identified six trends and ideas for and about retailing.

  1. Retailers are passing customers by

Twenty to 25% of customers don’t know if an online store or a bricks-and-mortar business exists for the retailer from whom they have just made a purchase in store or online, respectively.

  1. The end of the classic customer journey

Through Amazon, for example, supply purchasing is increasing. Functions and technologies like the Dash Button or Voice Control make shopping much more convenient for the consumer. However, the new business models are increasingly blocking the classic customer journey.

  1. Retailers are seeking footfall but not attracting it

Only a few retailers are themselves visitor magnets. Otherwise, the surroundings decide. Sites with high footfall are particularly desired by retailers. Airports and railway stations are gaining in relevance.

  1. City vs. countryside – retail dynamics are leading to division

A two-tiered society is forming between urban and rural regions. The reasons for this are the supply-side technological advances and consumer requirements in terms of dynamics, availability, and supply security.

  1. Manufacturers and marketplaces are challenging established retailers

Retailers are increasingly concerned about their exclusive customer access. Many manufacturers skip the retailer and strengthen direct sales via marketplaces like Amazon and eBay.

  1. Personnel or the nail in retail’s coffin

A company is only as good as its employees! Investments in qualified personnel are indispensable. Particularly in the digital age, consultation at the POS is the key success factor.

Image: pikselstock / shutterstock


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