To stay competitive, retailers must continuously update their business models to meet the ever-changing needs of American buyers. Many factors impact retail trends, including technology, the state of the economy and the popularity of certain items, so it's important for retail businesses to keep their growth plans flexible. Here are some retail trends that have become popular.
Increased Online Shopping
In the early-to-mid 2000s, countless retailers, large and small, began losing customers to online retail giants Amazon.com and eBay. For many businesses, this loss continued for over a decade because company leaders waited too long to jump on the online shopping bandwagon. Some retailers even went out of business because they did not follow this retail trend quickly enough. Retailers that were still in the game got smart and on-board with this trend. In 2017, online shopping is the norm, as most retail businesses offer customers the opportunity to purchase goods online. In fact, customers who don't want to deal with the hassles of in-store shopping expect retailers to have an online purchase option.
Enhanced In-Store Shopping Experience
Due to the competition many stores faced from the e-commerce boom, retail businesses had to come up with multiple strategies for getting customers into their physical stores. Many retailers use technology to make the in-store shopping experience more exciting for customers. One in-store retail trend includes using computer stations to provide details about products, help customers find specific items in the store and direct customers to the items they wish to purchase. Another trend is to have smart mirrors in fitting rooms that automatically adjust lighting and allow customers to call for human assistance. Other retail trends include using robots to direct customers to items and deliver merchandise to customers in fitting rooms. These are just some examples of new technologies that help bring customers through the door.
More Used Merchandise
Millennials make up a very large percentage of shoppers, and according to Forbes magazine, this group is less materialistic than previous generations. Millennials are used to comparing prices and seeking bargains online, and they have no problems buying used, repurposed or refurbished merchandise if it saves them money. Many millennials have also adopted a minimalist lifestyle and are socially conscious, believing that purchasing used goods saves money and is better for the planet. The tiny house movement is also popular among millennials, and many of them want to spend as little as possible furnishing their tiny homes.
Retailers that sell used electronics, furniture, household goods and decorative items are scoring big in the retail market. This retail trend has spread worldwide, thanks to e-commerce websites like eBay, which many people use to get rid of items they've collected as children and to clear out their parent's homes. This retail trend is likely to be around for a while, as people continue to focus less on purchasing new and expensive name brand items and more on creating experiences that enrich their overall lives.
For retailers to keep American buyers happy and their businesses successful, they must stay on top of current retail trends. Customers are definitely in the driver's seat when it comes to shaping businesses, so retailers that want to thrive must adapt to meet those needs and desires.
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