Technology is not just here to stay -- it's evolving so fast that it's hard to keep up with.
This is a good thing for both producers and consumers. The retail trader industry is using tech more than many others, and it's improving the shopping process.
Read on to learn more about how technological development in retail is changing how we shop and how companies do business.
1. Expect a Merge Between Brick and Mortar and Online
Close to 14,000 department stores closed by the summer of 2020. Many of these branches for major stores like Macy's, JC Penney, GNC, and Pier 1 Imports.
However, with technology advancing, it's clear that brick and mortar stores aren't going away altogether. Instead, we will begin to see more integration between them.
Consumers will be increasingly likely to make a purchase online for an item that they'll pick up in the store. This cuts out the amount of blind shopping that they would otherwise do, and the consumer gets the item that day, rather than waiting for shipping times.
Shopping online first also allows a customer to see how much inventory the store has and where exactly to find a particular item.
Expect to see companies increase their integration between these platforms, rather than leaning too hard into one business model or the other.
2. Blockchain is Becoming More Prominent
Blockchain allows for more detailed tracking throughout every step of the supply chain. It becomes easier to track a product's origin and make sure that it gets to its destination.
This improved tracking also allows retailers to cut down on counterfeit goods and other forms of theft.
Of course, Bitcoin and other forms of cryptocurrency are the reason most people know about Blockchain. Expect to see more companies accepting cryptocurrency in all of its forms for in-store and online payments.
The more payment options customers have, the more likely a company is to improve its revenue.
3. Manufacturers Are Embracing 3D Printers
Recently, 80% of companies said that 3D printing allows them to innovate. These printers are improving the retail by leaps and bounds by putting more power into manufacturers' and consumers' hands.
Imagine being able to add one-of-a-kind customizations and alterations to a clothing item or device that you're ordering online.
Because retailers have access to 3D printers, they can create items to spec much cheaper than they would if they had flesh and blood humans making these customizations.
These savings get passed along to consumers, and the turnaround time for these projects is much speedier.
4. Mobile Payments Are Becoming Par for the Course
Consumers have more tech at their disposal during the shopping process. It's to the point that several people prefer to pay by cell phone rather than whipping out cash or a debit card.
According to recent studies, 64 million people were expected to pay for something using their mobile device. Consumers today can add their banking information to their cell phone wallet or use third-party payment services like Apple Pay or Android Pay.
These options will only increase as people become more comfortable using mobile devices for payments. There are even grocery stores now that come complete with smart carts that tally the items up and let a person pay with their app without going into a checkout line.
5. Smart Products Are All the Rage
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a huge area of focus in the retail world moving forward. More people are buying smart speakers like the Google Nest Mini and Amazon Echo to research goods and place orders with a simple voice command.
Expect to see more people buying smart refrigerators that order groceries for you by Amazon or Instacart as soon as your items are running low.
It makes shopping easier and more convenient and gives companies more of a chance to get consumers the goods they buy most frequently.
6. Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Will Keep Taking Off
Customer service is one of the most critical tenets of the retail experience. Nothing makes a consumer write off a company quicker than a poor customer service experience.
Technology today is bridging that gap, as Artificial Intelligence (AI) chatbots are more intuitive and helpful.
This is yet another win-win for both the consumer and retail company. It lowers overhead costs while helping customers in meaningful ways.
AI is also useful in customizing shopping experiences and helping people find the products they're most likely to want. It allows retailers to market better and even creates customized discounts that are individualized.
7. Having a Mobile App is Becoming Essential
Without question, retail companies need a mobile app to thrive today. These apps can help grow a loyalty rewards program and can allow customers to order items with a swipe and a click.
There are several sites that offer cashback and discounts for shoppers. Integrating these sites with a mobile app will apply the discount seamlessly without having to present a coupon at a cash register.
Mobile apps also garner data that helps retail companies learn more about what their customers want and how they shop. As a result, marketing strategies can become more detailed and with less error.
Technological Development in the World of Retail Trading
These points explain how technological development is changing retail and the way that we shop. Expect this tech development to continue in virtually every industry.
If you love trading, you can wear your passion on your sleeve with our products. Take some time to contact us on the web or by phone at 202-900-9925.