Consumer expectations.Customer experience. Consumer behavior. Does your retail business relate to these three terms? Do you know they are the major drivers behind the success of your business? So, to add real value to your business you must solve your customers’ problems first, listen to their growing shift in expectations and changing behavior. You got to mold your offerings, products & services as per their changing shifts. So, what will be the top transformative consumer trends in 2022?
Trend #1 Digital Comes First
Your retail business has already adopted digital routes to connect with your customers, right? But, is it sufficient or do you need to expand your horizon? So far your digitization journey has incorporated only these channels – your websites, your social media channels, email offers, and maybe more, however, you have added them as an add-on and not the primary channel for your business. Today, the consumer prefers retail experience exclusively on digital channels. B2B or B2C, customers are opting for their business routes via a digital channel only. For customers, digital comes first before the rest! Your business must focus on building an improved version of digital-first interactions with prospective or existing customers. Three ways your retail business can do this-
- Switch over to web & mobile apps
- Focus on digital-only products/services
- Set up a smooth omnichannel environment that will enable customers to have a seamless movement between channels for a cohesive customer experience.
Trend #2 Personalization & Micro-Moments
Your customers want personalized offers that exclusively cater to them. They want to feel special and not a part of your mass marketing goals. You must admit the fact in today’s age of hyper-individualization, your consumers want to buy your product if it is uniquely customized to their requirements. They expect you to understand their unique needs and respond accordingly. This will lead your customers to build a meaningful rapport with your brand, your business. Moreover, they want all these very fast and immediately. They have plenty of choices as everyone is targeting them, not just you. So, focus on their unique needs and give them quickly before anyone does that! If you search in Google, the result will appear as ‘Micro-Moments’ for this kind of consumer experience. In a flash of seconds, you need to deliver to your consumer!!
Trend #3 AI-Powered Product Cognification
SMART is the ongoing trend and the cognification of products and services is increasingly making inroads to consumers’ lives every day.AI (Artificial Intelligence), IoT(Internet of Things) are inevitably making products smarter and digitally powered thereby multiplying their capabilities manifold. For example, how consumers are buying AI-IoT-sensored refrigerators, cars, and other products that are technically SMART to use. Similarly, for your business clients and customers, even machines in factories are leveraging the huge potential of digital capabilities, increasing the efficiency and productivity in the ecosystem. Thus, products are becoming more and more intelligent while services are equipped with AI capabilities and other digital technologies.
Trend #4 D2C without Intermediary
Consumer trend is going to take a round-about turn in 2022 towards direct dealings and purchases with no brokers and middlemen or traditional intermediaries involved. The D2C(Direct-to-Consumer)trend is going to bypass intermediaries in the retail supply chain which means, wholesalers, suppliers, distributors, retailers, advertisers, all are connecting directly with their end-consumers/customers. As a retailer or business person in retail, you need to sync with this consumer trend and find some direct digital routes to your customers using varied online channels.
Trend #5 From B2C to C2C
How about current businesses like Uber, Etsy, Facebook, and many others conducting businesses online? The same pattern is going to occur in 2022 onward for the retail sector as well. Just for your knowledge, C2C (customer-to-customer) business means customers directly connect with other customers for the business. This is increasingly picking momentum and there have been instances when a b2c has transformed to c2c and succeeded in their journey. So, if you are not a platform, fully-fledged business, you can think of this c2c model and get started!
Trend #6 Subscription-based Services
An entirely significant consumer trend for 2022, the subscription-based products & services is the trend greatly driven by the rapid cognification factor. As a business, you can now delight your target customers with thoughtful subscription-based products and items when they need them. Your customers would just love to sign up if you personalize your offerings to their requirements and specific expectations. The bottom line is, your business can generate predictable revenues as long as you provide your customers with value-based products and services.
Trend # 7 AR/VR/XR
Immersive Experience is the keyword. XR (Extended Reality), AR (Augmented Reality), VR(Virtual Reality)digital tools and technologies are increasingly becoming popular amongst consumers and customers because they can get real-life experience out of them. Your customers get instantly impressed with these immersive& engaging tools/ technologies.
Today, consumers are highly prioritizing experiences over materialistic achievements. It means, they look for value-added services and products that are personalized to their specific tastes and needs.Consumers/customers are not ready to compromise on this ground and just cannot accept anything on their plates. As a brand, you need to connect with your target audience instantly else they will move to the next brands in a flash of seconds. So, get ready for the year 2022 and align your retail business according to the consumer trends predicted here!
Interested to know more about the consumer trends that can benefit your retail business? Contact us.