True or false: retail isn’t doing so good

Even though performance may vary among retailers, the future looks promising for the retail industry. Sure there are new challenges to take on as the industry transforms, but retail sales–with the exception of gas–are expected to grow more in 2017 as compared to the year before.

  • According to Deloitte’s Retail, Wholesale, and Distribution Industry Outlook 2017, to keep customers loyal and win new business, there are three angles that retailers need to consider:
    • Attracting purchasers into physical and online stores with improved loyalty programs and experiential engagement experiences
    • Offering unique or highly differentiated product and service offerings while ensuring in-stock inventory levels
    • Achieving operational excellence in addressing customer service and support requests


  • Expansion and growth is expected to come from emerging global markets, non-traditional channels and partnerships. Heard of Rihanna’s fashion line for Puma?
    • The consumers’ desire for instant gratification with zero friction has opened up new possibilities for differentiation:
    • Flash sales—last-minute, exclusive online offers available for a very limited amount of time, for example 24 hours.
    • Pop-up stores—fuel impulse shopping by expanding traditional brands’ in-store experiences at newer locations on a seasonal basis. Build the hype and tap into the FOMO.
    • Virtual markets and platforms—no need to invest time and resources in building your own e-commerce website when high-performance, low-cost options exist (Etsy, NewEgg or Amazon).


  • Differentiated goods will continue to require physical purchases but the same cannot be said of common goods and recurrent purchases. For instance, renewing one’s contact lenses is best done from one’s couch nowadays