customer today is spoilt for choice owing to diverse factors like multiple brand choices, extremely attractive value propositions and availability of content 24X7 due to various social platforms and technological access.
Also there are radical changes and explosion in the retail landscape with the emergence of new age e-commerce players giving the larger organized players a run for their money. All this explosion is resulting in mad rush for new customer acquisition however the same is fuelled largely by deep discounting, which in the longer run is unlikely to be un-sustainable. As discounting is very transactional in nature and does not build any engagement with the customer over time.
Trends give us a purview of the latest market dynamics that influence shopper behaviour. Loyalty programs bring retention and long-term focus on customer trends, usage, and social media behaviour to the retail sector. Keeping this in view, 2017 predicts a stronger, more efficient, agile strategy for retail e-commerce and loyalty programs.
Retail trends to watch in 2017
• Personalized Services: The future of services is increasingly pushing for higher demand. With a pragmatic approach, the interface between companies, brands and customers will improve. Social media conversation tracking is going to be trending in 2017, which is a ground-breaking path to the future of handling customer behaviour and deliver tailor-made solutions.
• Data is king: In a world, which is fuelled by the internet and smartphone penetration, it is very clear that data is the king. Technology has come a long way from the numerous promotional campaigns to personal offers to a customer by tracking their choice of products and transaction details. Pricing plays an important role in data analysis; luxury brands who are looking at protecting their positioning are consistently changing their interface and adopting new measures of communication.
• Connected devices: The future of e-commerce lies in the hands of connected devices. Large players have immersed their data research into further enhancing their customer experience by simply placing Wi-Fi chips that update automatically. Thus, any depleting item automatically updates itself sending the customer a message and issuing an order for replenishments. This further leads to the building of brand loyalty and adds a treasure trove of consumer behavioural data.
• Pricing architecture: The price war will become a point of conversation with the latest 2017 trends in the retail structure of the future. Big data, interactive mediums, and IoT devices have broken the traditional shopping journey. The brick and mortar are undoubtedly trendy and cool, but with the advancement of e-commerce platforms, these off-line stores are getting old school.
• Consumer Trends: Online beats the brick and mortar format in the age of IoT. As the future of e-commerce grows, retailers will realize that the breadth of an online store has clearly more advantages when compared with the offline stores. Online has a great potential to innovate and curate an assortment of items. This will enhance the customer experience in the future, as more and more shoppers are moving to the Internet of Things and increasing their choice of buying power.