4 Retail Trends to Watch For in the Coming Year

(DGIwire) – Between amazing advancements in technology and a blockbuster end-of-year sales season, 2018 was a great ride for shoppers and retailers alike. It also set the stage for the year ahead. What will the industry be buzzing about over the next 12 months? Several trends suggest that what is on the horizon could make for an interesting period for retail companies. Here are four examples.

  • Sustainability becomes a new focus: A number of companies have expanded sustainability efforts, with outdoor and sporting companies leading the way, notes RetailDive.com. Meanwhile, the United Nations’ launch of the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action, with a mission to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, has gained support from a wide range of fashion brands.
  • Store concepts keep rolling: Brick-and-mortar stores continue to evolve in many ways, and more and more retailers are using physical space to experiment with technology, location size or customer services, RetailDive.com reports. Going forward, more department stores and others may try to refresh themselves with experiential offerings, in-store services and fresh store concepts.
  • Retail as a service to expand: Retailers are exploring options to create a more personalized experience for consumers. Data released by the Retail Industry Leaders Association suggest that 63 percent of consumers were interested in personalized recommendations while 64 percent were willing to share personal data in exchange for benefits like loyalty points and automatic credits for coupons.
  • Shopping via tech gets more sophisticated: In 2018, Amazon Go launched and quickly expanded, 45 percent of purchases were completed via smartphone and various companies began accepting different payment systems, RetailDive.com notes. Implementing the mechanics that make these transactions as frictionless as possible will help determine which tech stays around for the long haul.

“As retail companies decide which strategies are likely to maximize their success in the months and years ahead, they must simultaneously grapple with the myriad challenges associated with attracting and retaining the right talent and producing suitable brand ambassadors, whether on a contract or permanent basis,” says Rebecca Cenni-Leventhal, founder and CEO of Atrium, a staffing and contingent workforce solutions firm. “A staffing agency with deep expertise on these matters can play a key role in this regard.”

Atrium is focused on providing staffing and contingent workforce management services for mid-size and Fortune 500 companies in nearly every industry. Atrium’s expertise includes regional Temporary and Direct Hire Staffing, national Employer of Record Payrolling, national Independent Contractor Engagement and specialty Intern Recruiting Services.

“Just as companies remain focused on maintaining their appeal to customers, maintaining an appealing work environment in the eyes of current and prospective employees should be a priority as well,” Cenni-Leventhal adds.