During the holidays, retailers often expect to rush in herds of shoppers. As shopping trends evolve, the long lines may still exist, but an increase in retail shopping using technology may drive in the most business. A combination of both face-to-face interaction at local retail stores and increased online promotional activity is bound to keep retailers in business when utilized all year long.
The assumption that retailers must cater exclusively to online shoppers may be a step in the wrong direction. Shopping trends show that customers crave face-to-face interaction and personal attention from store representatives. Technology is still a top contender when it comes to shopping, however, many consumers want to talk to a live person when they are surfing the Web for must-haves. Shopping trends may ultimately move to live video sessions with knowledgeable store representatives versus online chats or obtrusive pop-up messages prompting consumers to ask questions. A personal touch both online and face-to-face may be one of the most up and coming shopping trends in the future, and how retailers respond to consumers' needs and wants may make or break the bottom line.
Shoppers also desire convenience and excitement, which is why many retailers are setting up camp in the hot spots of major cities. When a consumer can grab a latte, a clothing item and a gift for a special someone in a pop-up shop in close proximity, retail shopping is bound to hit a surge. The convenience factor is not necessarily a new trend for shoppers, but retailers have taken notice that a prime location can significantly impact sales.
Social networks also play a part in the changing shopping trends. Consumers continue to monitor the shopping experiences of their followers and peers. They use social media platforms to solicit advice and suggestions regarding top-performing electronic gadgets, appliances and major purchases, such as vehicles. Retailers that embrace social media can tap into an advertising market that attracts buyers when they are posting sale items, promotions and helpful tips for consumers via social media. With the creation of mobile applications that allow consumers to scan bar codes, redeem cash and point rewards, obtain coupons, and reserve gift items, shopping has transformed into an online environment that eventually lands the customer into the retail store.
It's no secret that shoppers want bargains, personal attention and convenience as shown in past and coming shopping trends. However, in order to keep up with the competition, retailers with a successful track record are modifying how they deliver the goods. In addition to personalized service and face-to-face customized shopping experiences, retailers are pushing the trends forward by complementing the buying experience with mobile applications, online video sessions, social media promotions and blogs.
Photo courtesy of photostock at FreeDigitalPhotos.net