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4 trends every retailer should know

Breaking down the key themes from Shoptalk 2024

Shoptalk 2024 brought together industry experts to delve into the latest trends shaping retail and consumer behavior. 

Here are four key takeaways from the event to consider integrating into your retail strategy to stay ahead of the competition.

Trend #1: Reshaping personalization with AI

Data-driven decisions and consumer insights are pivotal. Shoptalk highlighted AI’s continuous impact, showcasing how AI algorithms leverage Big Data to enhance customer experiences and tailor outreach strategies. During the session “The AI Opportunity for In-Store Operations and Experiences,” Tapestry’s VP of Global Digital Product explored the potential of AI in the retail industry.

Tapestry— the parent company of COACH, Kate Spade, and Stuart Weitzman— is utilizing an AI-based marketing solution to personalize the checkout experience on its e-commerce site. This generative AI application combines anonymized web session data with marketing language to dynamically produce engaging and motivational words and phrases for each customer.

In the context of AI, not all retailers are ready for or interested in a complete AI transformation. For those hesitant about AI but still interested in personalization, digital clienteling technology— which Tapestry brands also utilize— is a viable solution. With its personalized and human-centered retail approach, digital clienteling empowers sales associates to convert authentic human interactions into valuable consumer insights that help drive business.

Trend #2: Adapting to dynamic consumers

Shoppers are not static profiles but evolving entities with changing needs. The narrative at Shoptalk 2024 wasn’t just one of buyer profiles, but of buyer psyches.

Retailers can adapt to dynamic consumers by prioritizing trust as the new currency, focusing on post-purchase experiences for fostering loyalty, trust, and repeat purchases through personalized engagement and value-added services. This concept was reflected in several sessions such as “Checkout, Loyalty and Post-Purchase Experiences”.

Sneaker brand Veja is keeping pace with changing consumer demands by transforming customer interactions from the point-of-sale to post-acquisition and reimagining what customer loyalty means. They provide a holistic after-sale service, taking an active role in assisting their customers to look after their shoes sustainably. By offering comprehensive instructions on cleaning, restoring, and recycling their sneakers, they extend their lifespan while guaranteeing customer contentment throughout.

Trend #3: Supporting next-gen customer journeys

Customer experience stands out as the focal point, striving for swiftness and adaptability. At Shoptalk, the limelight was cast on unified commerce and effective fulfillment.

Sessions such as “Creating Seamless and Continuous Store Experiences,” featuring Saks Off 5th’s Chief Technology Officer, underscored the theme of next-gen customer journeys.

Saks Off 5th is enhancing omnichannel customer experiences with innovative features such as virtual styling sessions, and the ability to pick up curated looks in-store after purchasing them online. This BOPIS (buy online pick-up in-store) function enables Saks off 5th to meet the swift demands of e-commerce deliveries, ensuring a cohesive customer journey across all touch points.

Trend #4: Building organizational agility and resilience

Conversations at Shoptalk 2024 explored the need for organizations  to optimize for operational agility, speed, and innovation for growth.

The Chief Technology Officer of David Yurman emphasized the importance of breaking down organizational barriers in the session “Working Cross-Functionally to Drive Transformation”.

Retailers can establish agile frameworks for transformation by eradicating isolated operations and promoting cross-functional teams. Leveraging enterprise-grade retail technology to enhance data accessibility and visibility across the organization can facilitate this shift.

Fostering organizational agility and resilience involves prioritizing cultural change to create a more adaptable workforce, emphasizing continuous improvement, and promoting innovation and experimentation to cultivate a culture of learning and growth. Once a robust company culture is established, retailers can enhance operations with technology for streamlined processes and a consolidated data source. Additionally, implementing internal messaging platforms can boost team communication effectiveness.

Bringing it all together

Shoptalk 2024 wasn’t merely a platform; it was a proclamation of the retail transformation that’s underway.

Each trend isn’t just a prediction but a piece in the grand jigsaw puzzle of the retail future, waiting for leaders to assemble. The question isn’t whether you’re prepared for these shifts; it’s whether you’re ready to lead them.

Learn more

Contact us today to learn more about Tulip’s best-in-class Clienteling and POS capabilities that are loved by the world’s most iconic retailers like David Yurman, Versace, Jimmy Choo, Mulberry, Saks Fifth Avenue, Ferragamo, COACH, and Michael Kors.

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