The evolution and revolution of retail

Retail is going through an evolution on the back of a revolution.

In line with the rest of the planet and on the back of the internet, retail is going through its awkward teenager like years full of pimples, self doubt and uncertainty about tomorrow and what may be ahead.

Like a typical prepubescent the 10 years prior to the economic downturn many retailers were full of self importance, saw themselves as invincible and the centre of attention.

Come the economic downturn, consumers had less to spend and became very determined to spend it wisely.

The days of spending excess are in hiatus. Retailers have to work hard now to prove their worthiness to us and many couldn’t and can’t.

Mixed into this backdrop is the evolution of online shopping; the growing number of online shopping business models, sites and opportunities and hey presto we have a new retail environment growing out of the virtual ground.

These two factors, what’s in it for the consumer and what retail might evolve into are the topic for this weeks discussion between ABC Radio Australia’s Adelaine Ng and myself as we explore the evolution and revolution of retail.

Listen now:

2 Responses to The evolution and revolution of retail

  1. Really interesting interview! I don’t shop at Apple but I found your analysis of why Zara works so well interesting. Yes, they have plenty of new stock…but often messily presented and, the usual, very few associates to help.

    My new book is about retail, from three perspectives — I worked as an associate in a NY suburban mall, PT, for 27 months; I describe my experiences as a shopper and I interviewed many senior retail executives. I recently spoke at a conference and heard them say exactly what you do here — that the industry is evolving (and very messily.)

    But shoppers don’t know or don’t care! They/we just want to be delighted. How many retailers even use that word?

    I hope you’ll check out the book; veterans of the industry tell me it’s (sadly) accurate.

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