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The rapidly evolving retail landscape is more competitive than ever before. Consumer preferences are evolving, technology is advancing, and savvy retailers are adapting in response.
Today’s modern shoppers expect to shop how they want, when they want, and where they want. For long-lasting retailers, this means a seamless omnichannel experience, providing more options at checkout, and embracing emerging technology are all requirements for success.
To uncover the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for retailers, Square partnered with Wakefield Research for our annual Future of Retail report. We surveyed retail business owners and retail customers across the U.S., Canada, the UK, and Australia in order to gather actionable insights for forward-looking retail leaders across the globe.
A seamless omnichannel retail experience is key for growth.
Despite a year of economic uncertainty, retailers remain optimistic and eager to grow in 2024, but they’re divided on their approach. Fifty-one percent plan to focus on enhancing the in-store experience in the next 12 months, while the other 49% are putting greater focus on adding more online options.
Multihyphenate strategies will make for resilient retail businesses.
Savvy retailers plan to take advantage of multihyphenate expansion strategies to diversify their revenue streams, if they haven’t already. In the next 12 months, retailers plan to offer more when it comes to the in-store experience: 61% plan to more offer in-store options, like a coffee or wine bar, while 60% are interested in paid advertising space on digital channels or physical spaces.
Retailers are using technology and automation to stay competitive.
Retailers plan to continue to leverage technology, automation, and AI in order to find operational efficiencies and meet customer demands. And consumers now expect retailers to be using technology, with 67% of retail shoppers citing they prefer automation over talking to live staff when it comes to tasks that make their shopping experience more efficient.
Inside the Future of Retail report you’ll find:
- What specific strategies retail businesses plan to use to stay competitive in 2024.
- How retailers are tailoring their experiences to customers and what tactics are especially relevant to Gen Z.
- What drove customers to retailers in 2023 and what they’ll be looking for in the coming year.
Future of Retail Report: 2024 Edition
Read on for deeper insights into the 2024 business trends and actionable ways to stay ahead of the competition.