The retail industry will have tremendous development in the next ten years. The future may seem unpredictable, but certainly, shopping and the retail sector will be different from how it is done today. Shopping has become synonymous with everyone today, and history has proven that shopping patterns keep changing based on the influence of technological advancement. Gone are the days when people would make physical appearances in various shops in town to buy essential commodities. With the click of a button, at the convince of the customers, one can but anything they want virtually, and it is delivered to their doorstep (Ahn, & Back, 2018). By evaluating the available literature on modern shopping trends, this study aims to explore the future of retail markets management and the emerging shopping trends that may influence how shopping will be conducted in the future.
One clear thing is that technological advancement is a catalyst in changing consumer attitudes and behavior. Consequently, there has been a significant increase in access to essential retail information on the internet, and about trending brands, their prices, and availability which have enabled consumer empowerment (Faulds, Mangold, Raju, & Valsalan, 2018). Notwithstanding, technology will continue to be a game changer in the retail industry as consumers become increasingly able to use technology. Consumers across the globe are shifting to using online shopping and is now an established buying behavior. The use of smartphones and other smart gadgets is now an essential tool that has expanded into remote villages and towns around the world. According to Grewal, Motyka, & Levy, (2018) retailers such as Walmart and the Amazon have begun to launch e-commerce sites where customers can buy virtually almost anything they desire. KPMG research on consumer buying trends discovered that about 46% of shoppers in the U.S. and the U.K. use mobile devices to shop for their goods and locate the nearest stores, while about 35% use mobile devices for research on commodities and services (Ahn, & Back, 2018).
As a result of technological advancement, digital retailing has evolved and expanded to be described as an omnichannel shopping experience. Similarly, the omnichannel will facilitate enhanced communication between retailers and consumers through the use of emails, websites, catalogs, and social media platforms to interact. The traditional retailers will have no otherwise other than integrating different retailing channels into a seamless distributive experience for their esteemed customers, or they will be left behind (Grewal, Motyka, & Levy, 2018). Digital channels will decisively reduce business operating costs that will effectively reduce the overall price paid by the consumers. A few years back people had no much use of their mobile phones, and they could wonder whether it had any other purpose besides calling and receiving calls. However, it is a different story today, with multiple consumers unable to live without their phones since they have adapted to the changing cycle of technology.
Continuous changes, enhanced speeds, and advanced technology will be the factors that drive the retail industry in the future. Therefore, it will depend on the ability of both the consumers and the retailers to keep up with the pace of technological advancement to survive in the market place and do business (Roy, Balaji, Quazi, & Quaddus, 2018). In the future, retailers will have to cope with the dynamic evolution of market environments since they change independent of the competitors’ activities. The economic conditions, customer’s lifestyles, changing consumer tastes and preferences will all affect the retailer’s future revenue. Therefore, retailers must ensure that they are up to the task by embracing technology as it advances. Similarly, they have to consider strategic planning procedures as well as consider future reactions by competitors and consumers in response to the ever-changing retail industry (Faulds, Mangold, Raju, & Valsalan, 2018).
Today, consumers are spending less on traveling for shopping because they can comfortably shop online form the convenience of their homes. Moreover, retailers are now offering delivery services which have enhanced competitiveness in the retail sector significantly (Ahn, & Back, 2018). Consumers have begun to cut down of luxury due to tighter budgets, thereby promoting the low-cost retailers who are thriving where consumers have tighter budgets. Thus, it pays off for retailers who are cost-focused since they tend to attract a higher number of customers compared to those who do not factor the high prices of their consumables. Toma (2018), argues that it is essential for all retailing companies to stay ahead of the competition by using technology and social platforms to woo the increasingly aware consumers.
Customer satisfaction is one of the substantial aspects that all retailers should aim to accomplish. By offering goods and services at lower costs, and utilizing strategic economies of scale, supermarkets have become more dominant in the retail sector since they can undercut specialist retailers (Roy, Balaji, Quazi, & Quaddus, 2018). More people are now on the verge of buying things at one click. Consumers are unable to wait at the long queues in shops for billing and other services. Therefore, future retailers should focus more on opening retail outlets that are nearer to customers so that they can deliver commodities on time. Through various ways, consumers can experience satisfaction when they are fully involved in the buying process. Therefore, in future, the retailers will have to consider reducing the time spent in the buying process and convenience of the buying process. von Briel (2018) argues that without these two primary aspects, the retailers will lose a significant number of consumers, which will result in losses and eventual closure
The future of the retail industry seems bright. However, success will depend on the retailer’s ability to offer consumers with seamless, personalized shopping experiences. Notwithstanding, the retailers who will focus on meeting customer’s demands and satisfaction will have an added competitive advantage. Future retailers will have to integrate their services and goods with social media platforms, in-store technology, smart devices technology enhancements along with other emerging technologies that will help boost the retailer-customer engagement. The retail industry is expanding rapidly and keeping up with the pace may seem difficult. Today, the world is driven by hand-held gadgets and devices that allow them to get things done with one click. Consumers are aware of the happenings around retail shopping and are taking full advantage of the online experiences because they consume less time and money to get the products delivered at the doorstep. However, consumers still expect retailers to set up physical shops at their reach with most of the products they would need available. Therefore, retailers have no option but to embrace technology and use it to their advantage to gain more sales and leverage on the competition.
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