The Future of Retail : Insights from the Global CXO Webinar

April 16, 2024 Share this article:

Future of Retail Webinar Insights

On Wednesday 10 April 2024, the AltoPartners Consumer, Luxury & Retail & Services practice group hosted an exclusive CxO webinar examining the future of retail, the current trends impacting the sector and the impact these changes will have on the business structures, and the skills now sought after to continue the evolution of the sector while meeting increasing customer demands. We proudly hosted Thomas Knudsen, Managing Director of Pandora Eastern Europe and member of the board of directors; Pedro Pereira da Silva, Bridgewhat Partner & Executive Board member; and Marc Estourgie, Advisory & Supervisory Board Member.

The retail sector is a complex one impacted by a number of stressors and factors, namely:

  • Geopolitical instability
  • Economic instability
  • Rising costs relating to energy and inflation
  • Tight labour market (The Great Escape!)
  • Cybersecurity + new technologies
  • Shifting power from government to consumers regarding sustainability
  • Banks not wanting to finance retailers
  • Role of the physical store shifting from sales to “client service centres” (and distribution centres of online shopping orders)
  • The transactional approach of traditional sales has evolved to now being an emotional relationship that customers have with your brand

Post-pandemic, retailers are now strategising about how to attract shoppers to come into the store:

  • Online shopping moved from 12% pre-pandemic to 30% post-pandemic, with indication that the trend will continue
  • In-store representatives are now moving from sales to “advisory” roles, with focus on the customer experience and service
  • When targetting Gen Z, the journey ahead is to create a reason for them to come in to the store and complete their purchases
  • Create immersive experiences in-store
  • User generated interest is created via Instagram -> experience instore but revenue through the e-stores
  • Social media is now an industry that generates sales and has become a commercial platform
  • Focus is now on profitable online sales vs. growth of online sales (channel shift from physical stores to online)
  • AI and automation are tools is the retail process and not a shortcut to customer happiness
  • Hyper-personalisation and AI are tools to attract customers -> look at co-creation and design of goods through AI, create a reason for the customer to purchase but have something that is unique to you

Watch a recording of the full webinar session by watching the video below and get in touch if you want to be featured as an industry leader on our next CxO webinar!