Although e-commerce is increasing, stores have an advantage in increasing consumer dwell time. According to Glenn Fodor via PYMNTS.com, brick-and-mortar stores outperformed expectations considering the rise of e-commerce. When consumers spend more time in a brick-and-mortar store, they are more likely to make purchases, share experiences with friends, and return. Therefore, retail executives must focus on maintained storefronts, assets that function properly, and minimized disruptions to guest experiences. In fact, consider these top trends in retail facilities management and how they will enhance guest experiences throughout 2019.
Amazon Will Continue to Move Into the Physical Retail Space
Amazon officially moved into the brick-and-mortar space in 2018 with the purchase of Whole Foods. Whole Foods’ consumers enjoyed perks for Amazon members, and sales rose throughout the year. This represents a common truth in retail; brick-and-mortar stores are not dead. Amazon will continue its push to develop cashier-less stores and advance the retail giant’s success. Retailers will need to begin working to develop ways to stay competitive with Amazon, creating apps to speed checkout, offer new discounts for purchases made online and picked up in store, and more.
Consumers Will Return to Brick-and-Mortar Stores for Product Exposure
As explained by Carlo Versano via Cheddar.com, consumers will return to brick-and-mortar locations for product exposure. Shopping online is great, but it is impossible to physically feel, smell or taste a product or food. Thus, consumers will still return to their favorite brick-and-mortar stores, and the 2018 holiday shopping season proved this point.
Trends in Retail Facilities Management Enable BOPIS
One of the biggest trends in retail facilities management will be the continued development of buy online, pick up in store (BOPIS) shopping options. Every retailer, from grocers to electronic stores, are turning to BOPIS delivery models to give consumers more options. As a result, facilities management will need to evolve to consider drive-thru lanes, BOPIS vending machines, and smart systems to track when consumers arrive to pick up their purchases.
Retailers Will Continue to Merge With Non-Retail Services
As explained by the PRSM Association, 2019 will see more retailers merge with non-retail services. This may range from health care clinics to restaurants, but the demands of consumers will drive the endless combinations of retail and non-retail services. Retail is becoming an entertainment center, so more companies will opt for interactive features, social media-ready displays, and a truly omnichannel experience.
Retailers Will Look for New Ways to Save Energy, Read “Money.”
A key trend to look for in 2019 will focus on the use of energy in retailers. Energy costs will continue to climb in 2019. This paradox is the result of increased demand for sustainable initiatives despite decreased fuel costs. Ultimately, more retailers will look to implement energy conservation programs, reduce energy use, store energy for use during peak hours, and more.
Blockchain Will Mature & Include Coupons, Loyalty Programs and More
Blockchain will stand apart within the trends in retail facilities management in 2019. According to the PRSM report, blockchain applications are limited only by the imagination, offering an opportunity to track consumer and facility data, which analytics may process and define new ways to streamline operations. Still not convinced? Check the following PRSM infographic, published by Facility Executive, which highlights some additional trends in retail facilities management.