The new retail reality
While it is yet to be determined which consumer shopping trends will have a lasting impact coming out of COVID-19, what we know for certain is that the digital shelf is now more important than the physical shelf.
While many brands are taking this time to innovate and find new strategies for greater personalization and digital connection, they’ll need to ultimately unpack what is a passing trend versus a real shift in consumer behaviour.
The retail space is undergoing a complete makeover. Some of these changes include consumers becoming more digitally savvy, the increasing need for a touch-free shopping journey, price value equation, a rise in consumer awareness, popular discretionary spends, new product launches, local sentiments undergoing a change, increased consumer consciousness and last but not the least the online channel gaining traction.
A few key aspects which retailers should consider post the COVID-19 scenario if they are to survive in this new reality include:
- Going Hyperlocal- An increasing impetus should be laid on localisation
- New age Phygital- Apart from enhancing, presence on e-commerce platforms, there is also scope for retailers to leverage strategies, like instore operations including virtual reality, enabled trial room experiences, live displays of stock being available, click and collect etc.
- Using digital technologies to the maximum- The pandemic has resulted in increased use of advanced technologies with CEOs keen on digitising sales and customer experiences in both the B2C and B2B context
- Supply chain resilience- Retailers should look at modifying their supply chains and develop capacities to plan inventories and logistics to meet fluctuations in demand.
- Revised media and advertising spends- Retailers could look at experimenting with different feasible forms of media, in spite of a probable cut in marketing budgets
- Staying close to customers- Shoring up customer relationships and maintaining brand loyalty will be crucial and imperative