The Consumer Of The Future

“The word is convenience – anywhere, anytime, however the consumer wants it”. Colgate-Palmolive

Consumers today are driven by two things; a decent deal on products and quick delivery.   However, there are a small number of growing consumers that want more from e-commerce.   By 2026, these basic wants will still exist, but consumer expectation of both the shopping and e-commerce experience will of changed drastically.

2026 will see the need for instant access and a fast turnaround as normal.  This need for instant gratification will evolve with the consumer expecting a seamless shopping experience across the increasing range of connected devices available to us.   Immediacy and convenience will be paramount.

Consumers will also have expectation for retails to provide;

  • proactive rather than reactive customer support
  • free or very low cost delivery
  • anytime, anywhere delivery service
  • goods meeting their expectations, with a what you see is what you get mentality

This puts a great deal of expectation on the retailer and those not able to meet the demands of the consumers could fall to wayside.

Shopping experiences will become an event in their own right

An expectation from consumers for retailers to provide a shopping experience that is an event in its own right will also be seen by 2026.  Interactive, highly engaging online and real-world retail environments where augmented reality (AR) will be part of the key experience.

So what is driving these trends?

Consumers today already treat shopping as a leisure activity.  We are seeing consumers drawn into new generation lifestyle brands.  Alongside this is the appetite for life-enhancing experiences in addition to material things.

Social Media is another driving force, with peoples insatiable need to showcase their participation in activities and experiences on all SM platforms.  Retails are therefore having to align their brands and shopping experience to create encounters with the consumer that they feel are worth sharing. This is seen throughout the retail sector, with brands encouraging shoppers to take selfies in front of displays and show them to sales assistants for free gifts, or win in a competition.

What can the retailer do?

It is clear that by 2026 the consumer journey will be an experience in its own right.  The prolific amount of wearable devices and technology will drive the consumer experience, with an expectation that the consumer will be able to have an start-to-end shopping experience on a mobile platform, in store and online.  This will make it difficult for retailers to keep up with an unpredictable growth and evolution of devices and touch points.

Success will be on the retailers ability not only to keep track of users across a growing of these devices and touch points, but also their ability to effectively measure which of these is the most effective at driving sales.

Contact a Retec Specialist today to discuss how we can support the evolution of your customer experience – 03300 580 011



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