NRF 2020: The Hottest Retail Trends of The Year

NRF 2020 Retail Trends
22.01.2020 news

The 2020 NRF Retail’s Big Show, which took place in New York City in January, was a massive event. Many influential speakers and more than 40,000 attendants made it to NRF’s record-breaking event so far. Our team was there and sought insights and inspiration to drive customer loyalty forward. The following are the three key themes that were by far the most covered this year.

Technology: Use it to achieve better customer experience

Did you know that 98% of Gen Z owns a smartphone and 55% of them spends more than 5 hours per day on their phone? Or that 64% of Gen Z would prefer to have unlimited access to the Internet to a college degree? These statistics provided by Shyft Workforce at the NRF Retail’s Big Show simply illustrate how technology cannot be ignored, especially when addressing the youngest generations.

Technology will be a key focus area for retailers this year. Implementing the latest tech trends to enhance customers’ experience is key to keep shoppers satisfied. As Ruth Laurent-Kocher, Head of Loyalty USA at UNGA explains: “The NRF 2020 Show was dominated by technology and its potential for and impact on all retailers around the globe. Grocery retailers are ideally positioned to play an important role if they deliver a great customer experience. To amplify their core strategies, in-store promotions and incentives can play an impactful role. Instant reward campaigns are a perfect solution.” 

Short-term loyalty campaigns can be a great chance for you to engage with consumers. Enhancing your campaigns with digital solutions and more will help you extend your customers’ experience and communicate relevantly to them.

Click here to see examples of our successful instant reward campaigns.

Video Credits: National Retail Federation

Data: Collect them and utilize them properly to make consumers happier

The shift in the online world has been affecting retailers and the way they approach their customers. The annual trade show reminded us that winning retailers are those who place their customers at the core of their actions. Gathering customer data and interpreting them correctly gives you the opportunity to deeply analyze your customers’ behavior: The best way to ultimately offer them what they ask for.

In the next three years, 83% of retailers will focus on personalized promotions and offers that reflect customers’ shopping behavior and product preferences, according to IDC. Furthermore, 80% of retailers will work with a customer database and analytics platform to analyze their customers. The good news for you is, thanks to the growth of technology, there are many trustworthy platforms you can use to track your customers and optimize their shopping journey. And if you aim to increase your stores’ success, definitely make sure that you belong to the above-mentioned 80%.

Sustainability: Focus on the protection of the environment to satisfy your customers

Sustainability is definitely one of the most discussed topics of the last decades. The urgency of climate change turns more and more attention towards environmental issues. Consumers are increasingly conscious and want to take action. Sustainability is the key that retailers should implement in their businesses to unlock their full potential.

Consumers care about social causes and look for products and brands that align with their personal values. The IBM Institute for Business Value revealed during the trade show in New York City that 57% of surveyed consumers globally are willing to change their purchasing habits to help reduce negative environmental impact. Concurrently, 73% of consumers indicated that transparency and traceability are important for them, and 71% could pay a premium for full transparency.

It simply means that retailers should move towards more sustainability in their business model. A good starting point for them is to learn their customers’ expectations on this topic. In the end, not only will they make their customers happier by offering them more sustainable solutions, but they will easily stand out by doing so, leading to enhanced sales and profitability.

The era is changing. Technology evolves very fast, data rules the world and consumers are more than ever eager to protect our planet. All of these trends tremendously affect retailers. In the next couple of years, we will see that the most successful retailers are those who focus on their customer experience—by following the latest and biggest tech trends—and take initiatives towards sustainability.

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