How changing shopper attitudes and technology are re-shaping retail.
The Future Shopper
By The Futures Company & Kantar Retail, 2013
Bill Gates once said that, “we overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next 10.” Shoppers and shopping are just reaching the tipping point between the short term and the long. In this Future Perspective we explore how the combination of digital technologies, consumer expectations and socio-economic change is transforming the way we shop and what it means for suppliers, manufacturers and retailers alike.
One thing is clear: The change in shopper behavior and attitudes that has been linked by some to the financial crisis is, in fact, a deeper shift caused by the intersection of changing social attitudes and technology, and reinforced by the economic environment. Similar changes are seen in both richer markets and emerging markets, even though the latter have been affected less by the aftermath of the financial crisis.
This Future Perspective starts by reviewing the ways in which shopper behavior has been—and will be—transformed by the digital and mobile revolution. It then moves on to look at the broader trends shaping the shopping environment before introducing a model that helps retailers and manufacturers sharpen up their strategies in the new shopper environment. Finally, we look at some of the emerging retail models that are attempting to marry virtual and physical environments which are becoming increasingly blurred.
It is, of course, difficult to discuss the future of shoppers without also discussing the future of the retail environment, and inevitably these issues are intertwined here.
What’s striking about the story that we are telling here is the collision of the old and the new. It is a world in which the needs of shoppers remain, in many ways, largely unchanged—but their expectations of how businesses will fulfill those needs are being transformed.
To continue reading, download The Future Shopper
, (pdf, 1.20 Mb )