Key Trends Facing Retailers in 2022

Even with all the growth of online shopping and click and collect over the past two years, it is pretty clear that the vast majority of customers still want to shop in physical stores. Particularly when these visits are coupled with technology to create new experiences and efficiencies that match the convenience of buying online. However, shoppers are now taking advantage of both online and in-store to suit their buying needs, which is why retailers have to get onboard with the trends or be left behind.

Here are 4 key trends that will continue to grow and become much more commonplace for both in-store and online:

1) Experiential retailing – using augmented reality to showcase products and services will explode in 2022 as this technology becomes much more widespread. The ability for customers to “try on” clothing virtually is a game changer as well as customers being able to video chat with a sales person as they explain and demonstrate the latest products.

In store, this includes sales staff using hand held terminals to access customer’s previous buying patterns to provide a more personalised approach. The use of technology to showcase various products while in store or online and see how it looks in your home is here already.

2) Cashier less shopping – set to ramp up and reduce waiting times at checkout as well as provide efficiency in completing other mundane tasks. Pioneered by Amazon in the US, we have seen this technology slowly being adopted here in Australia. As technology gets cheaper this will become much more widespread.

3) Delivery – the race has been on for some time to automate this process through drones and robotic deliveries. Drone trials have been successfully run in Canberra, so it’s only a matter of time before drones are filing our skies.

Driverless vehicles are being developed with the capability of making multiple delivers, as much as 80, in one trip. Expect this race to continue and autonomous deliveries to be more widespread.

4) Omnichannel commerce – the ability to browse, purchase and check delivery status for items on any platform will also ramp up, allowing customers the freedom to choose how and when they shop. From seeing an ad on TV and making an instant purchase, via smartphone or Siri/Google home.

If nothing else the rate of change will accelerate throughout 2022 and who knows what tomorrow will bring, let alone next year!

Roger Simpson – CEO, The Retail Solution and Author of “The Ultimate Retail Sales Experience” With over 35 years’ industry experience, Roger Simpson is recognized as Australia’s #1 Authority on customer ROI in the retail industry and as a global expert on staff coaching, customer service, and selling skills.