What is the future of retail?

Retail is undergoing a major shift, with brick-and-mortar stores forced to evolve for a digital-commerce age; multiple new ways to buy; the rise of data-based personalization; fast-changing consumer attitudes and habits; and various new technologies continuing to disrupt the status quo. Our latest trend report touches on all these factors, bundling three trends we’ve outlined in recent years that are bringing key changes to the retail arena.

“Retail As the Third Space,” one of our 10 Trends for 2011, is rapidly accelerating as e- and now m-commerce become habit for consumers. Digital commerce is forcing retailers to rethink the function of brick-and-mortar, which is increasingly focused around experiences, unique environments and customer service—giving shoppers new reasons to spend time in these spaces. We’ve revised and updated the drivers, manifestations and implications of this trend from a 2013 perspective. 

Transactions are not simply moving beyond physical stores to the digital space—rather, brands are getting increasingly creative in where and how they sell their goods now that almost anything can be a retail channel, thanks largely to mobile technology. Shopping is becoming a value exchange that can play out in multiple new and novel ways, as we outline in Everything Is Retail, one of our 10 Trends for 2013. This revised version includes new manifestations.

Predictive Personalization, another of our 10 Trends for 2013 that we’ve updated, points to retail’s shift to a data-centric business. As data analysis becomes more cost efficient, the science gets more sophisticated and consumers generate more measurable data than ever, retailers will increasingly be able to predict customer behavior, needs or wants. The race is now on to master the art of tailoring offers and communications very precisely. 

“Retail Rebooted” also includes 20-plus Things to Watch in Retail, ranging from innovative business models to shifting consumer behaviors to the latest tech developments. Click here to download the full report or here to browse it on SlideShare.