Radical Retail Report points the way to the future of retail 2035 | Nexer
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1 Jun 2023

Radical Retail Report points the way to the future of retail 2035

Niche is the new norm - according to Radical Retail Report - Trendwatch 2023 by Nexer and Kairos Future.

Radical Retail Report is a recurring future report produced by tech company Nexer and research company Kairos Future, in collaboration with retail industry experts. The report presents how tech developments are expected to change the retail industry by 2035, including current trends, challenges and opportunities facing retailers. The insights highlighted are essential for businesses to survive the current recession and to know how to act in a rapidly changing world of new sustainability requirements, technological developments, and automation.

Inflation and increased interest costs leave less money in the wallet, limiting people’s ability to consume. For retailers, this means reduced turnover and lower margins, resulting in major economic challenges that force companies into bankruptcy. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicts that one-third of global economies will be in recession by 2023, while technological developments continue apace, bringing major changes to the retail sector.

“You could say we are in the middle of the third retail revolution, characterised by AI, automation and social engagement. The economic situation has and will continue to create challenges for retailers. Understanding the changes taking place in retail and quickly implementing new technologies that create successful business concepts will be crucial for companies’ profitability and survival”,says Caroline Thorén, Industry Partner – Retail & COO Nexer Maverick.

Three major changes that will characterise the retail industry in the future:

1. Higher demands for regenerative and sustainable retailing
External pressures from regulators, investors, consumers, and employees are increasingly demanding regenerative practices. Integrating used product sales into their traditional business is becoming a major opportunity for brands’ sustainability strategy to ensure reuse and reduce waste. Second-hand sales are therefore becoming more and more widespread. There is also a greater demand for companies to bring their operations home to build more resilience in their ecosystems by decentralising value flows and building more locally based solutions.

2. The consumer is the new marketplace
The digital world allows people to interact with each other in entirely new ways. Web3, which is built on blockchain-based technology, changes the conditions for digital business by decentralising the ownership of data. For retailers, this means that consumers no longer act as a passive audience but instead as co-producers with a strong influence. The function of the consumer therefore moves from being in the marketplace to being the marketplace. Since consumption is directly linked to social identity, brands need to create niche offerings and unique experiences to engage target groups and build a culture around the brand. With a strong culture, social groups can emerge that drive interest in the brand, allowing brands to enter otherwise inaccessible contexts, such as closed groups on social media. Digital products, such as non-fungible tokens (NFTs), are also growing and serve to reinforce social identity for consumers.

3. AI as your right hand
Perhaps most revolutionary is how the development of generative AI is changing the game in ways we cannot yet imagine. The pace of development is fast, requiring retailers to closely monitor developments and navigate upcoming changes. Generative AI brings a paradigm shift for knowledge and creative work. With new AI tools, anyone can be a content creator on the internet, be it text, images, voice, code, or video. For retailers, this means an opportunity to develop, for example, fully personalised shopping experiences and automated customer service. AI also plays an important role in predicting demand and creating resource-efficient operations, which is why implementing AI solutions will be crucial for retailers to create efficient, competitive, and sustainable processes.

Want to know more about the new shifts, technologies and trends that will characterise the retail industry until 2035? Read more here: Radical Report Trendwatch

About Radical Retail
Radical Retail is a report series that follows the development in retail with a technology focus. Nexer and Kairos Future are working together with experts to distil the most important insights about the current trends in retail and what they might mean for the future. The report series is meant to act as a practical guide for any retailer that wants to better navigate towards the future.

Radical Retail – Trendwatch 2023 maps out the most important trends associated with five major shifts in the retail landscape that were described in the original report released in 2022. The update is based on research in Kairos Futures international Trend database, special research at the NRF Retail’s Big Show in New York 2023, expert interviews, and Future Deep Talks with a Retail Advisory Board.

For more information, please contact:
Katarina Cenner, Commercial Marketing Manager, Nexer Group
+46 73 9440103

Felicia Röding, press contact Hipe Agency
+46 76 189 03 32