2. Expansion of Data Collection and Analytics Will Lure More Customers
Let’s face it, Big Data is everywhere. From concerns over breaches to the collection of information, data is set to be a hot topic both in the news and in the boardroom. Retail is one industry that particularly stands to gain from data collection as companies look to learn all they can about their customers’ needs.
Retailers have been able to expand their collection of data through both point of sale and website cookies, but expect that to expand in 2020 as more companies take advantage of the Internet of Things to learn more about the shoppers they’re trying to lure in. Not only will they need tools like customer relationship management systems to keep it all straight, but they’ll also need to be able to analyze and visualize all that information. Platforms such as Microsoft’s Power BI, Splunk and Tableau can help organizations understand the information they’re collecting so they can optimize profits.
3. More Stores Will Embrace the Internet of Things
The rise in IoT has forced industries to take notice; it’s estimated that by next year, there will be 30 billion IoT devices in operation. According to McKinsey Global Institute, these devices will have an economic impact on retail of between $410 billion and $1.2 trillion by 2025.
Automated checkout, personalized discounts and smart shelves are all advancements that are powered through IoT. Customers can be sent alerts about discounts relevant to them when they get close to a store, and those stores can use IoT to better keep track of inventory and increase efficiency. Look for IoT to help brick-and-mortar stores create customer experiences that rival that of online stores.
4. Visual Search Will Help Shoppers Find What They’re Looking For
Online shoppers have long been frustrated trying to put together the right combination of keywords to find the item or style they’re searching for. Over the past few years, visual search technology has revolutionized that process, allowing shoppers to take a picture of an article of clothing, upload it to an engine like Google Images, and use that to drive the search with artificial intelligence.
It’s been a hit with customers and retailers alike. Research from ViSenze found that 62 percent of Generation Z and millennial consumers want to use visual search, while Gartner has predicted that early adopters of visual search will see their digital commerce revenue jump 30 percent by 2021. Companies who want to target younger consumers will have to incorporate it.
5. Attention Will Be on Mobile Shopping App Security
While physical in-store security has been common practice for retailers for decades, the surge in app-based shopping has raised the profile of the issue of cybersecurity as well. Customers are more aware than ever of the vulnerability of their data through online purchasing, with research showing that nearly 60 percent of customers who don’t use retailer apps are afraid their data will be compromised. Retailers need to have solutions in place to put those shoppers at ease.
From securing payment information at the point of sale to ensuring data protection is compliant with the General Data Protection Regulation, retailers big and small will need to prioritize customers’ changing security needs. That includes putting mobile apps through the same kind of penetration testing and endpoint precautions that organizations use to protect other parts of their networks.