The Future of Retailing

The retail world is currently undergoing one of the most significant periods of change since shopping malls were invented. Technological advances are driving changes in both consumer behavior and the abilities of retailers to cater to their customers. Both of these factors are creating retail trends that are setting up the future of the industry. Here are some of the most significant trends for the future of retailing

 

1. Omnichannel retailing

Omnichannel retailing is a retailing strategy in which retail companies attempt to create a seamless shopping experience across all areas of customer participation. This includes desktop computers, laptop computers, smart phones, tablets, and brick and mortar stores.

The reason why omnichannel retailing is likely to be a strong retail trend that continues into the future is because even just 15 to 20 years ago, very few people were making purchases through smart phones or other mobile devices online. Now, however, in the year 2016, one out of every three retail transactions occurs on a mobile device.

This is incredibly significant, and this percentage is only likely to increase over time as more and more people use smart phones. Therefore, retail businesses are likely to keep trying to enhance their omnichannel retailing capabilities.

2. Virtual Fitting Rooms

One of the biggest challenges for online clothing retailers at the present moment is fitting. Because there is no way to try on clothes before you buy them remotely, many people purchase clothing online only to discover that the items they buy do not fit. However, in the future, technology will enable people use “virtual fitting rooms” to make sure that the item fits.

This could involve advanced apps, and even virtual reality headsets such as the Oculus Rift to “try on clothes.” Considering how helpful this technology would be for clothing retailers, this retail trend is likely to be heavily used in the future.

3. Self-Checkout

Long checkout lines can be extremely frustrating for consumers. This can be especially true during the holidays or other periods when shopping volume generally increases. To combat this inconvenience to shoppers, retailers are increasingly adding self-checkout options.

Through technological advancements, self-checkout is now easier than ever. Many smartphones are capable of making payments. So, retailers are taking advantage of this capability. In the future, more and more retail store will have options for self-checkout with increased scanning and mobile payment options. This will help retailers fight customer frustration with long lines.

Karin Jakovljevic

About the author

Karin Jakovljevic

Karin Jakovljevic is the head of marketing at Ximble, a powerful, cloud-based workforce management system, simplifying employee scheduling and time tracking for retailers, restaurants and small businesses.

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