Tourism

These are the key consumer trends retail agents need to know now

Technology, store experience and sustainability have been highlighted as key trends that influence shopper behaviour in travel retail spaces, according to new research.

Travel research agency m1nd-set conducted a study among 1,500 consumers who have travelled internationally in the past 12 months aiming to reveal shoppers’ views on the key emerging retail trends and influencing factors that will impact their shopping behaviour in the future.

Tech advancements have emerged as the number one influencing factor, with key trends such as same-day and next-day delivery options expected to become commonplace, forcing many retailers to rethink their supply chain logistics.

Click-and-collect has seen significant growth in recent months also, the research revealed, with over 25 per cent of shoppers expressing the importance of this feature among the delivery options.

Other trends cited in the research under ‘technology’ included greater personalisation in both marketing and product; another development which will allow for greater personalisation, facial recognition, was cited as an influential new trend in the future.

Visual search, which also responds to shoppers’ desire for instant satisfaction and fulfilment also emerged in the research. Augmented reality (AR) shopping applications are set to increase in popularity according to the study, which revealed that more than three quarters of shoppers in some developed markets expect retailers to provide AR as part of the shopping experience.

The research also highlights trends that have grown considerably as a result of the pandemic, which shoppers interviewed for the study predicted would become a more regular part of the shopping experience.

These include contactless solutions for payment, delivery and even instore, where QR codes and robotics are expected to become increasingly more common.

Social shopping is the final trend cited under ‘technology’, where younger consumers – Millennials and Gen Z shoppers in particular – have a high tendency to purchase from ‘shoppable’ Instagram or Pinterest posts, as well as via live streams.

“The research underlines the growing importance the pandemic has had on both sustainability and technology in retail as well as the importance of unique in-store experiences,” Peter Mohn, CEO and owner of m1nd-set, said.

“Shoppers are unquestionably more sensitive to responsible consumption now and sustainable values must be an integral part of the shopping experience for retailers to remain relevant.

“It’s estimated that the pandemic has accelerated the shift to digital by around five years.”

Mohn said shoppers are looking for a more integrated experience that combines digital and physical experiences.

“The growing focus on digital has implications for the travel retail sector too of course,” he said.

“The ‘immediacy’ trend regarding delivery, with the growth of same-day delivery, click-and-collect options and the curb-side pick-up model we see in high-street retail, will need to be mirrored in travel retail with a greater emphasis in the future on out-of-store pick-up locations between security and the gate or even seat-delivery on board the aircraft.”


Featured image source: iStock/vadimguzhva

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