As if ecommerce and social media didn’t impact retail enough in 2015, there’s much more change on the horizon. We’re highlighting the retail trends and the news you can use to keep ahead of the competition. From omnichannel to Apple Pay and the impact of social media, change is on the horizon for retailers. Department stores are seeing declining sales and must now develop closer consumer relationships online and in-store according to Business of Fashion magazine. Grocery stores will see big changes as well including further digitization, online grocery shopping, in-store dining and entertainment according to GroceryStories.com.
Bain & Company reports 2015 luxury retail increased 3% with 1% to 2% growth projected for 2016. Foodies, fashion and french fries – that may be the next big retail trend in 2016 according to WWD retail. “Weblash” – a backlash against online shopping – may provide a small upside opportunity for savvy retailers who can utilize omnichannel marketing in 2016. Stunning fact: Amazon generated $0.51 of every $1 of growth in US ecommerce in 2015 and 24% of total retail growth in the US. The holiday retail snapshot? MasterCard reported total US retail sales were up 8%, e-commerce up 20% and brick-and-mortar stores sales down 10.4%.
Evolving Retail Trends to Watch in 2016
2015 has come and (nearly) gone, and for the retail industry, it has been a year of big change. From a variety of new payments options and requirements to new ways to sell online, there are a number of trends propelling the industry forward. Here are my predictions for which retail trends will bubble to the top in 2016, and how winning retailers will react.
Main Street Retail Will Strut Its Omnichannel Chops
Big box retail brands have long been developing robust ecommerce destinations to match their brick-and mortar superstores, but many independent retailers have been more internet-averse due to the seemingly overwhelming task of opening an online store. Thanks to a new class of tech tools, however, online stores are more affordable and easier to build than ever.
In fact, a recent survey we conducted of more than 1,500 independent retailers found 61 percent plan to increase their ecommerce budget in 2016, and 39 percent predict more online sales will be the biggest revenue driver next year. This coming year, independent retailers will shed their outdated notions and prove that they are an omnichannel force to be reckoned with. Via multichannelmerchant.com
What’s Next for the American Department Store?
But the challenges facing department stores, particularly those that deal in luxury goods, are much greater than this seasonal blip. To be sure, there is a significant transformation underway in how goods are bought and sold. It started with the advent of e-commerce, but now stretches far beyond any one channel. While department stores have rushed to catch up online with the likes of Net-a-Porter — by offering marginally better customer service than in the past, with perks like in-store pick-up — the push and pull between bricks and clicks is no longer the story.
Instead, it’s the customer herself who has changed: she or he is more discerning, more educated, and more demanding than ever, whether browsing on a URL or a lushly carpeted sales floor. Not only are consumers today after the best price, they are also more willing to research their purchases.
In a 2015 Accenture survey of 6,000 consumers — 1,707 of whom were millennials — 41 percent said they practice show-rooming, or the act of looking at merchandise in store and purchasing it online later. What’s more, the past thirty years marked the dramatic rise of the standalone store. Today, brands have a direct relationship with the customer through their own outposts, which wield higher margins. Via businessoffashion.com
Top trends in grocery shopping for 2016
It won’t be your mother’s shopping trip in 2016. Get ready for some creative changes as more grocers digitize their stores, while ramping up promotions and dining options to enliven what traditionally has been a mundane shopping trip.
And for homebodies or those too busy with their exciting lives to visit a grocery store, more food retailers will offer the option of ordering groceries online and having them delivered. An alternative is having ordered purchases waiting at the store’s curbside for pick-up. Here are the top trends for 2016 that indicate traditional shopping patterns continue to evolve… Via grocerystories.com
The world’s biggest luxury markets in 2015
The growing fortunes of the 1 percent weren’t enough to combat a slowdown in luxury sales over the past year. According to Bain & Company, sales of personal luxury goods — which include apparel, handbags and jewelry — are expected to tick just slightly higher at constant exchange rates, representing growth between 1 and 2 percent.
That compares to 3 percent growth over the prior year, and a 7 percent increase during the 2013 to 2014 period. The figures serve as the latest evidence that 2015’s slowdown wasn’t just the result of tumultuous markets or currency headwinds. Instead, they’re a sign that the double-digit growth posted by the high-end market before the recession is likely a thing of the past. Via cnbc.com
The Hot Trend in Fashion and Retail: Pizza, Pressed Juices, Macarons
The idea of sipping Champagne at a Chanel boutique isn’t far-fetched, but noshing on a slice of pizza while perusing vintage-inspired maxidresses at Urban Outfitters? A keen eye for fashion might not be enough anymore, as proven by Urban’s deal last month to acquire most of The Vetri Family’s portfolio of Italian restaurants. Philadelphia-based Urban Outfitters — owner of its namesake chain along with Anthropologie, Bhldn, Free People and Terrain — cited growth of the fast-casual segment, which is the category sitting above fast food but below sit-down restaurants, as the motive for the deal.
It isn’t the first company to have food on the brain when it comes to competitive advantage. Retailers and fashion brands around the world are discovering that these days simply offering apparel or accessories just isn’t enough. They also have to be baristas, sommeliers and chefs to draw shoppers into their stores. Via wwd.com
Introducing Weblash, Retails Next Revolution | WWD
According to eMarketer, global e-commerce sales make up well under 10 percent of total purchases. It’s clear— despite all the hype around online and social buying — brick-and-mortar still rules when it comes to driving revenue.
So why, exactly, in today’s digital age, is brick-and-mortar still dominating the retail scene? It’s because the Web model doesn’t work as advertised. Online shopping can leave buyers unsatisfied for several reasons. Physical interaction with products is impossible, pages can be difficult to navigate, there is no instant gratification, and there is a distinct lack of knowledgeable assistance available. In the coming years, we will start to see e-commerce providers succumb to these hurdles and brands will de-emphasize their Web presence and put more of a focus on brick-and-mortar locations. The retail space will begin to feel a “Web-lash,” or a backlash on online shopping and an increased focus on the store. Via wwd.com
Amazon Is Dominating the Entire Retail Industry
About one in every three online product searches begins at Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN). It’s a surprise the retail giant hasn’t turned into a verb similar to Google — “Amazon it.” It’s no surprise then, that its gross merchandise sales are expected to climb about 25% this year.
But putting those numbers in the context of the larger retail landscape really sheds some light on the absolute dominance of Amazon in retail in 2015. Macquarie Research analysts point out that Amazon accounted for $0.51 of every $1 of growth in U.S. e-commerce during 2015. Moreover, it grabbed 24% of total retail growth in the United States. Via fool.com
Holiday spending up 8 percent, online sales surge
Retail sales were up 7.9 percent between Black Friday and Christmas Eve, compared to the same period last year, according to MasterCard SpendingPulse, which studies transaction and survey data on purchases made with credit cards, cash, and checks. That figure excludes sales of automobiles and gasoline.
MasterCard SpendingPulse found that e-commerce provided crucial momentum this holiday season, with sales up 20 percent in that channel. The strength in online shopping was consistent with many forecasts for the season, which predicted e-commerce would post greater sales growth than brick-and-mortar stores. And it reflects the shopping patterns from the season’s unofficial Thanskgiving-weekend kickoff: Brick-and-mortar stores saw a 10.4 percent decline in sales during that time frame, while online sales hit record levels on Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday. Via bostonglobe.com
What’s retail’s upside in 2016?
Suffice to say, retail will have a challenging year in 2016. Savvy retailers will ensure consistent branding across online and off-line channels, utilize omnichannel marketing strategies, take advantage of their physical stores for education, entertainment and stronger engagement with consumers in store, as well as build capacity for better logistics such as same-day delivery or in-store pickup for e-commerce sales.