2022 is here and Placer.ai has released their predictions for retails trends in the new year. This past year has been a true testament towards the strength of brick-and-mortar retail. Consumers have forcefully returned to physical stores, meeting and exceeding pre-pandemic traffic levels.
Both retailers and shoppers understand brick-and-mortar’s unique value – reinforcing a newfound appreciation for human interactions, product discovery, and customer service guidance that only an in-person shopping experience can represent.
Placer.ai’s forecast showcases the following trends that are expected to play a key role in physical retail throughout 2022:
A Need for Omnichannel
A more harmonized approach to retail is critical, according to Placer.ai. Both physical and digital channels need to blend together to create a seamless experience for consumers.
The key to integrating an omnichannel strategy is to focus on the benefits of online and offline shopping experiences. Once retailers can successfully provide the best of both worlds, they will gain a deeper relationship with their consumers and have the ability to experiment with other experiential elements.
DTC Brands Moving to B&M
Digitally-native and direct-to-consumer brands are quickly moving offline with the apparent frictions of e-commerce on the rise. Many companies are turning to brick and mortar to help increase overall growth.
The push to move offline is evident – brands such as Warby Parker, Allbirds, Everlane, and Amazon have all found success in it. These companies are clear proof that physical locations are critical elements to maximize growth and impact.
This year expect DTC and DNB’s to be on the forefront of brick and mortar, with new stores throughout shopping centers to offer a fresh perspective to the retail mix.
An Emphasis on Healthcare & Wellness
The pandemic has created a new-found focus on the health and wellness category within retail. Retailers such as CVS and Walgreens have seen demand unlike ever before, and have made recent initiatives to remodel their stores and launch new offerings for consumers.
With the recent success in healthcare and wellness, other big box retailers have made the move to branch into this sector and expand their offerings. This will likely continue throughout the new year, showcasing the growing strength of retail in the healthcare space.
Small-Format Stores on the Rise
Small-format stores have been a recent trend in 2021, and will continue throughout 2022.
Retailers are opening shops inside of shops to integrate new partnerships. Kohl’s and Target are prime examples of these initiatives, and its likely other retailers will follow in pursuit. Data from these retailers showcase that there was a significant spike in visits to Kohl’s and Target stores once they opened shop-in-shop concepts.
Small-format stores are also being used among retailers to test out markets and reach new consumers. These options show retailer’s ability to push the boundaries and experiment with new concepts – a theme for 2022 and beyond.
Strategic Store Expansions
Store expansion plans are well underway and will continue throughout the new year. These growth initiatives are being made strategically with clear, effective plans. Expected strength in the coming months has made it an easy decision for brands to make aggressive plans to expand their physical footprint.
Source: Placer.ai Predictions
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