The five major retail trends that will shape the way we shop in 2022

- January 21, 2022 3 MIN READ
Virtual reality shopping on tablet in store

Do you know the five major trends that will shape retail in 2022? We do! Digital retail experts Tiendeo have released their Retail Marketing Hot Trends 2022 study. The results reveal that omnichannel marketing, experiential shopping and the circular economy will be heavy hitters in retailers’ and marketers’ strategies in the year ahead. Cec Busby takes a deep dive into the findings.

The five trends that will revolutionise retail

The Retail Marketing Hot Trends 2022 study canvasses marketers’ opinions from the world’s leading brands and retailers. This year it revealed five significant trends to watch.

1. Omnichannel experiences grow

Tiendeo’s findings reveal that digital channels have become the preferred medium for marketers to connect with consumers.

The study found that digital marketing (80.8 per cent) and social media (68.8 per cent) will be the most significant investments for marketing budgets in 2022. Meanwhile, almost six out of ten (58.6 per cent) of retailers and brands say they will be investing in digital channels this year.

Investment in traditional media (TV, radio or outdoor advertising) has also shifted to digital media.

Graph: most relevant media for retail in 2022

2. The experiential store and the demise of the shopping centre

Remember when the shopping centre was a destination, a meeting place to hang with friends? According to the survey, those days are gone. Welcome to a world where the experience rules and the experiential store is king.

The traditional store concept is disappearing replaced with stores that offer experiences: stores that combine the physical and digital worlds at a specific time and place.

This change in business model aims to attract the public to the store (both those who intend to buy and those who don’t) and thus create a unique emotion-based experience that creates a greater connection and bond.

“Although physical stores are still very popular, consumers want a memorable and frictionless experience, where digital will play a key role”, says Eva Martín, Tiendeo CEO.

“The customer shopping experience is the most critical factor in consumer marketing strategy for 91.2 per cent of professionals.”  

3. Technology as a catalyst for change

2022 is the year marketers predict technology and AI will come to the fore. From mobile sales support solutions to interactive kiosks, checkout-free shops and intelligent self-serve stores.

Customers will soon be able to shop and pay without the need for customer service or even a checkout.

Last month, British food retailer Tesco took the plunge by testing a new type of supermarket focused on autonomy and self-service in central London: its first checkout-free store, allowing customers to walk out with their purchases without scanning their products or checking out.

French retailers such as Carrefour, Auchan and Monoprix are also testing this new model. The development of this type of store allows retailers to compete with eCommerce giants by providing a more convenient and frictionless experience.

“When it comes to online shopping, we will be taken to the store from the comfort of our own homes through augmented virtual reality. An example of this is Dyson, one of the first brands to test this concept by opening its virtual store, where users are invited to try their products remotely and thus initiate the purchasing process,” Martin says.

woman using net bags for shopping at checkout

4. Zero-waste and the circular economy

Environmental concerns are driving consumer behaviour more than ever before, which has a knock-on effect on retailers.

Consumers’ demand for businesses to take a more sustainable approach to doing business has led to a rise in zero-waste companies and an uptick in the sale of second-hand goods.

In recent months, second-hand spaces have appeared in some large retail stores across the US, including brands such as Carrefour, Decathlon and Cora, and Ikea with its ‘Circular Hub‘.

Martin says another noteworthy feature of the circular economy is the commitment of several retailers to reduce or eliminate the production of their paper catalogues. For example, in Australia, supermarket giant Woolworths has halted its catalogue printing for at least 12 weeks in areas with higher digital engagement with its customers.

5. Social shopping is here to stay

Although social shopping is already a well-established trend, Martin says that in 2022, we will see more and more brands and retailers using this medium to complement eCommerce, where social selling will rely mainly on influencers and brand ambassadors.

Music to the ears of the 58 per cent of retailers and brands who intend to increase their advertising investments on social networks in the next 12 months.

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