Tech & Trends Driving Industry Innovation
2023 PREDICTIONS REPORT
Looking Back to Look Forward
In 2022, we saw a lot of trends dominate the retail headlines — from NFTs and web3 to retail media and Gen Z. But beneath the glitz and glamour of these cutting-edge technologies, we saw age-old issues, such as ineffective inventory planning and wavering customer loyalty, come into focus.
The ever-evolving, topsy-turvy narrative of what really drives retail success makes being in the industry extremely exciting, albeit a bit confusing. That’s why we’ve brought in a few pros to share which trends they think will carry through into 2023, and how retailers can apply them to reach their goals.
The Retail TouchPoints editorial team hopes you get a lot of entertainment and inspiration from this interactive guide. And as we turn the page on another interesting year in retail, we wish you a happy holiday season and a prosperous New Year!
Introduction Trend 1 Trend 2 Trend 3 Trend 4 Trend 5 Trend 6 Trend 7 Trend 8 Trend 9 Conclusion About
Prioritizing the Foundational Elements for Growth
Many retail CEOs are concerned about business conditions, largely due to the volatile economic climate. However, Brian Ehrig, who is a partner in the consumer and retail practice of Kearney, believes that consumer spending will remain strong, which means retailers will be able to focus on growth.
What will drive this growth mindset in 2023? Brian believes merchants will prioritize excellence in the core fundamentals, including:
Listen to get more of Brian’s thoughts on the trends that will rock retail in 2023.
Data and analytics.
Adapting Content, Products and Experiences to Gen Z
Watch the video to get more insights and best practices on these trends from Claire Nassif, who helps lead the direct-to-consumer practice at Prophet.
Gen Z may be tech-savvy, but they’re extremely mindful about how much time they spend on screens.
Gen Z expects different channels to work together harmoniously.
Gen Z connects more with authentic creators than big-name influencers.
Gen Z’s retail industry footprint is growing: not only is their overall wallet share increasing, so is their influence on friends, family and community members of all ages. Research from global consultancy Prophet reveals three key realities that retail businesses need to respond to:
Exploring New Paths to Ecommerce Profitability
In 2023, we can expect a big shake-up in the ecommerce landscape, according to Dan Brewster, SVP of Marketing for ESW.
Specifically, Dan notes that as consumer behaviors evolve, traditional ecommerce business models also will need to evolve to focus on:
Listen to learn how these two trends reflect the next stage of ecommerce differentiation and profitability.
Specialty retail concepts that reflect situational needs.
Localized experiences that support global commerce capabilities.
Creating Visibility and Trust Across the Path to Purchase
Listen to learn how all three of these areas connect to power the path to purchase.
One-to-one product creation models that improve customer relationships and better balance supply and demand.
A focus on real-time inventory visibility across all channels so consumers can make purchase decisions based on timelines that suit their needs.
Technology that provides more granular insight into order status and delivery times.
CI&T research has found that consumers don’t necessarily expect same-day or two-hour shipping options. They do, however, expect that retailers will get products in their hands when and how they promised.
That’s why Melissa Minkow, Director of Retail Strategy for CI&T, believes that the top trends of 2023 will revolve around ways retailers aim to create a more seamless path to purchase, including:
Bringing Localized Experiences to the Forefront
Personalizing inventory based on local tastes and preferences.
Developing a pipeline of startups and local brands that are immersed in specific communities.
Hosting unique events and activations that drive foot traffic and engage consumers.
Target recently announced that it would be investing more in large-format stores over the next few years. Rick Watson, CEO and Founder of RMW Commerce Consulting, believes that a key element of the announcement is that the retailer will personalize inventory for these stores to align with consumer needs and expectations.
Rick believes savvy retailers will follow Target’s lead and, as a result, we’ll see a continued rise in localized experiences. That means:
Listen to get Rick’s recommendations so you can lean into the localized retail trend in a big way.
Reimagining Loyalty Programs
Audit your CRM tools and the data they collect. Are they capturing engagement-rich opportunities and the customer journey?
Think about web3 and how it fits into your loyalty program.
Discover how to incorporate your ecosystem partners into your loyalty program.
In 2023, retailers will focus on reframing loyalty programs to make them more engagement-focused and less transactional in nature. By focusing less on individual purchases and more on the customer journey, Oliver Embry, Director of Product Innovation at MNTN, believes that retailers can better engage their customers via websites, social channels, and in-person experiences. This in turn generates greater customer lifetime value from retail loyalty programs.
Successful strategies for creating engagement-focused loyalty programs include:
Listen to get more practical advice from Oliver on how to level-up your loyalty program to focus on engagement, community-driven experiences and customer lifetime value creation.
Capitalizing on the Livestreaming Inflection Point
Making digital shopping experiences more personal and three-dimensional, which ultimately helps bridge the gap between channels.
Empowering associates to tell brand stories and rewarding their abilities with unique rewards and perks.
Gamifying customer experiences by integrating loyalty benefits, giveaways and more.
To capitalize on this new opportunity, brands and retailers should consider the role that livestreaming can play in:
Deborah Weinswig of Coresight Research believes 2023 will be a critical inflection point for livestreaming and that national growth will accelerate.
In 2022, livestreaming was a nearly $500 billion market in China while the U.S. market was a very small percentage of this.
Unlocking the Retail Media Opportunity
What is the key to not just success but survival for retailers in 2023? According to Ben Dunne, Accenture’s Advanced Analytics and Artificial Intelligence Lead for Retail, it means thinking more like a media company.
Specifically, Ben notes that retail media and data monetization is a $100 billion growth opportunity, which makes it a key pillar for retailers moving forward. Not only does it create a powerful foundation for brands and retailers to collaborate more effectively, it also allows them to create more resonant and revenue-driving campaigns.
Want to start reframing your business to embrace the retail media movement? Listen to Ben’s tips and recommendations.
Activating Audiences to Drive Community
Co-create new designs.
Get product feedback and other audience insights.
Ask key questions to drive better IRL experiences.
To foster true loyalty, brands and retailers need to focus on building and activating their communities. Matt Maher, Founder of M7 Innovations, reveals that Adidas, Lacoste and Rebecca Minkoff are using the platform Discord to foster relationships with loyalists. They use these communities to:
Want to learn how to dive into these web3 waters while remaining true to your brand promise? Matt offers some valuable insights.
These brands and retailers are giving consumers access to these communities with NFTs, which act as digital keys.
For More Inspiration and Insights
Retailers Scramble to Address Staffing Shortages with Expanded Self-Service Tech
Supply Chain Impacts, Understaffed Stores Create Customer Loyalty Challenges
Inside the New Era of Store Design
Read some of Retail TouchPoints’ top pieces of 2022 that dig deeper into the trends outlined in this report.
Stores Become Last Mile Staging Grounds as Retailers Pursue Convenience
Capitalizing on the Retail Media Boom
Designing a Connected Store Journey
Retail TouchPoints and design:retail give all members of the retail world access to a vibrant community that combines insights, inspiration and opportunities to interact with their peers. We sit at the intersection of the art and science of retail strategy, providing granular data, high-value commentary, and aspirational success stories to help readers optimize customer experiences across all channels. Touching all facets of the retail ecosystem, including store experience and design, workforce management, digital marketing and engagement, and omnichannel optimization, our editorial content, multi-media resources and events take timely news and trends and transform them into tactical takeaways that meet the unique needs and priorities of our executive readers.
MNTN builds advertising software for brands to drive measurable conversions, revenue, site visits and more through the power of television. MNTN Performance TV is the world’s first and only Connected TV advertising platform optimized for direct-response marketing goals. It redefines what advertisers can do with television, giving them the power to tie performance directly to their TV campaigns. We believe television belongs right alongside paid search and social in advertisers’ direct-response marketing strategies. That’s why we applied our experience in building performance marketing software to create an ad platform that combines the precision of digital with the impact of television.
ESW is the leading global and domestic direct-to-consumer (DTC) ecommerce company, empowering the world's best-loved brands and retailers to expand their DTC channel. ESW acquired Scalefast in June 2022. The combined organization offers brands and retailers a complete portfolio of ecommerce technology and services that cost-effectively support any stage of a company’s DTC development. From compliance, data security, fraud protection, taxes, and tariffs to demand generation, checkout, delivery, returns, and customer service, our powerful combination of technology and human ingenuity covers the entire shopper journey across 200 markets with 100% carbon-neutral shipping to consumers. Headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, ESW has global offices in the US, UK, Spain, France, Italy, Japan, Hong Kong, and Singapore. ESW is an Asendia Group company, a joint venture between La Poste and Swiss Post. For more information, visit esw.com.