Retail Marketing Trends 2023: What to expect this year

If you’ve read our “Retail Year In Review 2022” article, then you know a lot has happened in the last year in this industry. When we were expecting things to relax after the COVID-19 pandemic and its restrictions, the war in Ukraine started and it impacted the retail industry worldwide. 

In this article, we are going to talk about what to expect in 2023 when it comes to retail marketing trends. Every year, there are a few trends that stand out and retailers and brands should follow them to increase customer satisfaction and sales. Let’s see what trends you should be following in retail marketing in 2023. 

Trends in retail marketing to follow in 2023

Retail Media Networks

Retail media networks are an increasingly important aspect of digital marketing, as they allow retailers to monetize their digital assets and provide brands with a new way to reach consumers. As the e-commerce market continues to grow, retail media networks are becoming an increasingly popular way for retailers to monetize their website traffic and generate additional revenue streams. 

Additionally, with the rise of visual search and shoppable content, retail media networks are well-positioned to take advantage of these trends, providing brands with new ways to engage with consumers and drive sales. In 2023, we are likely to see an increase in the number of retailers and brands utilizing retail media networks as part of their marketing strategy, as the benefits of these networks become more widely recognized.

Hybrid retail and seamless shopping journey

Hybrid shopping refers to the integration of digital and physical shopping experiences, which allows customers to shop in a way that best suits their needs and preferences. This can include browsing and researching products online, and then purchasing them in-store, or vice versa. 

One of the main reasons customers enjoy hybrid shopping is because it offers them greater convenience and flexibility. With the ability to research products online before visiting a store, customers can be better informed and make more informed purchasing decisions. Additionally, the ability to purchase online and pick up in-store, or the option to return products in-store, can also add convenience to the overall shopping experience.

Overall, hybrid shopping is a way for retailers and brands to offer customers the best of both worlds, by combining the personal touch and instant gratification of in-store shopping with the convenience and choice of online shopping. In 2023, customers expect more and more retailers to allow them to shop “hybridly”. 

In 2023, customers will increasingly expect a seamless shopping journey across all channels and touchpoints. This is because customers are becoming more accustomed to using multiple channels to research, shop and engage with brands, and they expect the same level of service and convenience regardless of how they choose to interact with a company. Shoppers want retailers and brands to remember their personal preferences, purchase history, and other information and use them to personalize the shopping experience. 

Retailers and brands that invest in the necessary technology infrastructure to support a seamless journey will be better positioned to meet these growing customer expectations, and will therefore have a competitive edge in the market.

Making more space for retail tech

In 2023, retailers need to invest more in retail technology, particularly technology for in-store activities such as check-out, marketing, and inventory management, because these technologies can significantly improve the shopping experience for customers, increase operational efficiency, and provide a better understanding of customer preferences and behavior.

In-store technologies such as self-checkout and mobile POS systems can speed up the checkout process, reducing wait times and increasing customer satisfaction. Additionally, these technologies allow retailers to collect valuable data on customer behavior, such as purchase history and real-time inventory, which can be used to personalize the shopping experience and drive sales.

Furthermore, retailers can also benefit from technologies such as digital signage, augmented reality, and in-store navigation which can enhance the overall shopping experience and increase customer engagement. For example, in-store marketing solutions like Tokinomo can help increase sales by up to 200%! 

Lastly, retailers are also moving to use technologies like RFID, IoT, AI-based analytics, and Machine Learning which enable them to streamline the supply chain, lower inventory costs, optimize pricing strategies and increase sales. All of these will enable them to make data-driven decisions to meet the changing demands of the market, increasing their competitiveness and profitability in the long term.

Payment flexibility and support

The rising inflation is a major problem for most people. Every month, prices seem to keep rising. This is why customers expect retailers to take some initiatives to support them. For example, Asda has a line of products, called the “Essentials Line” in which customers can find own-brand cheaper alternatives to necessary grocery products. 

Also, another part of the payment and costs trend is that shoppers want to have flexibility. Shoppers expect retailers to offer payment flexibility, especially as the cost of living continues to rise. This is because consumers have varying budgets and financial needs, and offering multiple payment options allows retailers to cater to a wider range of customers. 

The rise of “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) shows that customers still need (and want) to shop, but they are looking for alternative payment methods. 

In short, offering payment flexibility can improve the shopping experience for customers by providing them with more options and control over their spending, this can increase customer satisfaction, and ultimately lead to increased sales and loyalty for retailers.

Increased demand for experiential marketing

In 2023, customers are increasingly expecting retailers and brands to focus on experiential retail, which is a type of shopping that emphasizes creating immersive and engaging experiences for customers rather than just focusing on selling products.

This is because, with the rise of e-commerce, customers now have access to a wider range of products and can compare prices and features easily. Therefore, retailers and brands need to differentiate themselves by providing customers with an experience that cannot be found online.

Experiential retail can include things like in-store events, product demonstrations, and interactive installations, which can help retailers and brands create deeper connections with customers and increase brand loyalty. Furthermore, retailers and brands can use technology such as augmented reality, virtual reality, and robotic displays to create immersive and engaging digital experiences that can be shared with a wider audience.

Overall, customers are increasingly looking for unique and memorable experiences when they shop, retailers and brands that are able to offer this kind of experience will be better positioned to capture the attention of customers and drive sales in 2023.

Social commerce and Livestream shopping

Social commerce and Livestream shopping have seen a significant increase in popularity in recent years and are expected to continue to grow in 2023. Social commerce refers to the use of social media platforms for buying and selling products, it can be seen as an extension of e-commerce. Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and now, more recently, platforms like Twitch and YouTube, provide a new way for retailers and brands to connect with customers and drive sales.

Livestream shopping, which is a form of social commerce, is a live video broadcast that allows retailers and brands to showcase their products, answer customer questions, and close sales in real-time. This technology allows customers to watch the product demonstrations, ask questions and even interact with influencers, these features make the process more engaging and increase the chances of conversions.

Both social commerce and Livestream shopping allow retailers and brands to reach a wider audience and build stronger relationships with customers by creating personalized and interactive shopping experiences. Additionally, as people are spending more time on social media, and mobile usage is increasing, it's becoming more convenient for customers to shop from social media platforms.

Sustainability and the rise of plant-based products

In 2023, retailers and brands will need to focus on sustainability if they want to stay competitive and appeal to the growing number of consumers who are conscious of their environmental impact. Sustainability is not just an environmental issue, but also an economic and social one, it includes the entire lifecycle of a product and its impact on people and the planet.

As consumers are becoming more environmentally aware, they are more willing to buy from brands that prioritize sustainability, as it aligns with their personal values. Additionally, with an increase in younger generations of consumers who prioritize sustainability, retailers and brands will want to capitalize on this trend to attract and retain these customers. Sustainability can be achieved through the use of more eco-friendly materials, reducing energy consumption and carbon footprint, and socially responsible practices.

Moreover, retailers and brands can also leverage sustainability to reduce costs and increase their bottom line by implementing sustainable practices like reducing waste and streamlining their supply chains. Additionally, they can communicate their sustainability efforts to the customers and use it as a competitive advantage, it can help increase brand loyalty and generate positive word of mouth.

Follow retail trends to delight your customers 

These are just a few trends that you will see emerging in 2023. Keeping up with the latest trends and innovations can help retailers and brands understand customer preferences and behaviors, and provide products, services, and experiences that meet and exceed customer expectations. 

Also, by following these trends, retailers can have a clearer overview of what's popular at the moment and also what to expect in the future. This will ultimately lead to the adjustment of their strategy. Following the trends can also help retailers and brands to identify new opportunities and capitalize on them, they can be used to innovate, differentiate and create a competitive advantage.

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