The digital age has impacted every industry, but the retail industry has experienced more challenges than most. There are more and more stories of bankruptcy, store closures and job losses, not just on the high street but across the Atlantic as well.
Does this mean the end of retail businesses as we know them? Industry experts say ‘no’. Rather, businesses ability to embrace new trends will determine their success. The following 5 themes reveal the challenges the retail sector faces this year and in years to come:
- Emerging Technologies – Augmented reality is expected to become more and more sophisticated. Consider IKEA’s Place app, which allows consumers to see how different IKEA products look in their home. Voice-driven shopping is also expected to go mainstream this year. More and more retailers will be exploring new ways to keep better tabs on inventory, improve customer experiences and connect with shoppers.
- In-Store Experiences – In the future, it will be important for retailers to do more than offer exceptional services and goods. To ensure their store remains relevant, business owners will need to create a place where customers can have more social experiences. Some experts have predicted that more stores will become ‘guide shops’ and hold less inventory, so they can allow consumers to touch products and sales associates can educate them.
- Brick-and-Mortar Evolution – Many are saying that 2018 will be the death of brick-and-mortar. Others are arguing that stores will adapt to these changes and shift roles. They will either become more showroom or integrate online and offline, allowing customers to purchase online and pick up in store.
- E-commerce and Mobile POS and Payment Options – Today, it is all about offering convenience. Retailers are focusing more on offering in-store mobile POS systems to enhance the customer experience. They are also realizing the need for flexibility in payment methods, which includes support for mobile wallets.
Are you looking for ways to improve your customers’ experience and implement new technologies? Do you need merchant services to offer multiply payment processing options? To find out more about the merchant services that will help your retail business succeed, consider browsing through Worldpay reviews UK.
Author Bio: Payment industry expert Taylor Cole is a passionate merchant account expert who understands the complicated world of accepting credit and debit cards at your business. His understanding of the industry has helped thousands of business owners save money and time.