As we are hopefully coming out from under the cloud of the Coronavirus there are plenty of reasons for businesses to be optimistic about the year ahead – and none more so than for the retail sector.
Retail has been through a tough few years, with significant structural changes exacerbated by Covid. However, 2022 looks set to be a year of fast-moving innovation. Footfall has bounced back with restrictions easing, demonstrating that consumers’ appetite for physical retail still remains. In October 2021 alone, the UK’s retail spending was up by 6.3% compared to the same period in 2019.
Digitally capable businesses have already seen how comprehensive technology adoption can lead to competitive advantages with 89% of customers expressing a higher interest in retailers using new technology in-store. Innovation can not only aid economic growth, but it has the power to enhance the consumer’s in-store experience.
It is clear that the Covid-19 crisis has fundamentally changed consumer behaviour thus the need for physical retailers to adapt. The pandemic has exposed how challenging it can be for vendors to adjust to this change without advanced digital capabilities. With many of these new behaviours set to linger, it’s imperative for businesses to effectively integrate digital tools into their fold to stay relevant to a growing proportion of digital consumers.
All of this will require a shift in approach and for innovation to be better celebrated and nurtured. It is vital for businesses to follow this path to keep up with the changing and challenging demands of the consumer.