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6 Retail Tech Trends That Go Beyond Competing Against Amazon
DSN STAFF | January 21, 2019
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Article | April 2, 2020
In the past several weeks, over 100 retailers both legacy and DTC have temporarily shuttered their doors or reduced hours to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. For digitally native brands, which operate few stores relative to more traditional players, the move to operating exclusively online, in theory, should have come with little disruption to business. But that hasn't been the case. Online spending at ThirdLove during the week of March 16 fell 39% week over week, while Poshmark fell 30% and StitchFix fell 9% during that same period, according to Edison Trends data shared with Retail Dive. As a whole, direct-to-consumer brand week-over-week spending fell 7% on average between March 2 and March 22. Comparatively, the average week-over-week increase for these brands from Jan. 6 to March 1 was 1%, according to the data.
The start of a new year is the perfect time to reflect on the past and prepare for the future. While holiday 2019 was another record year for retail sales, brands faced some serious challenges when it came to a shortened shopping window and the ever-growing consumer expectations around timely, accurate, and convenient deliveries (and returns). Some may believe these woes to be behind us now that the holidays are over, but the potential for spikes in product demands remains throughout 2020 leading into next year's holiday season. And if history has shown us anything, it's that now is the time for retailers to implement the right processes and technologies that ensure seamless and positive customer experiences, or risk ongoing negative impacts to the bottom line.
Every industry has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, with governments implementing various measures in a bid to slow the spread of the virus. This means consumers have had to adapt their behaviour, which in turn is reflected within the economy. As many people are furloughed and many stores have had to implement temporary closures, data shows that people are buying less, which has had a direct impact on the retail industry.
With retail stocks hammered in the coronavirus-driven market selloff, should you buy the dip? Some retailers, like Costco, may see upside from the panic. But, there are scores of retailers who could see diminished profits in the near term. Why? Supply shocks, for one. Also, if this crisis causes a recession, expect to see decreased consumer spending. The brick-and-mortar retail sector is already feeling a squeeze thanks to Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN). In other words, the “retail apocalypse.” This may be a more material factor for smaller, niche retailers. However, even major retailers struggle to stay relevant in the face of e-commerce growth.
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