We’re now well past the halfway point (?!?!) of the year, so it’s a good time to take a look at 2018 retail trends and sales. The U.S. Census Bureau surveys 4,900 retailers each month, releasing a detailed look at retail sales broken down into 13 different categories:
Food and Drink (Grocery and Liquor Stores)
Building and Garden
Sport and Hobby
Health and Beauty
After a record-breaking year for retail in 2017 with $5.7 trillion in sales and the largest growth since 2011, 2018 is shaping up to be even better. June sales were up nearly 6% from the same month last year (because the holiday season accounts for approximately 20% of retail purchases, sales are usually comparatively measured month for more relevant data). Such strong retail numbers indicate a healthy economy. So be sure that your retail POS system can handle all of these crazy sales!
Overall, we’re continuing to see huge growth for online and eCommerce sales. Still, consumers show no signs of abandoning brick and mortar stores. After all, the world’s biggest online retailer just bought one of the largest grocery stores and is in the process of rolling out Amazon Go, a new take on the brick and mortar retail store. Traditional retailers are forced to compromise with current trends rather than revamp altogether. This involves adjusting pricing, convenience, in-store experience, or other factors in order to entice the typical consumer.
Evaluating retail data in the United States is clearly an exhausting task, so we’ve picked a few of the more interesting and relevant points to highlight today:
Top Retail Trends from the Retailer’s Side
54% of retailers said improving customer experience is their highest in-store focus. Next was cross-channel marketing at 22%
Online retail is up another 10% and now contributes over 11% to total retail sales
So is creating good content: 63% of consumers want retailers to provide informative content; 75% are more likely to make a purchase if a video is included
Top Retail Trends from the Customer’s Side
51% of consumers prefer to shop online
96% have made an online purchase in the past year
80% make an online purchase at least monthly; 30% at least weekly and 5% at least daily
46% of small businesses don’t have a website
67% of Millenials prefer online over brick and mortar, 56% of GenXers, 41% of Baby Boomers and 28% of Seniors
The vast majority of consumers believe that social media influences their purchases; 53% say that comes from Facebook alone, though 74% said they would not share a purchase on their social media
59% of eCommerce is conducted on a mobile platform
Mobile coupons and discounts are 10x more likely to be redeemed
90% say they’re more likely to make a purchase if delivery is free
Parents spend 61% more online than non-parents, and men, 28% more than women
23% of carts are abandoned (reasons for abandonment pictured below)
So What Do the 2018 Retail Trends Tell Us?
With the vast seas of data, it’s hard to do a fair job of summarizing. But if there was one clear indication, it’s that any retail store must be making changes now to adapt to online commerce. This includes an efficient, content-rich website, a suitable eCommerce platform, and email and social media marketing. For a more in-depth look, check out these ridiculously informative studies that we used to put this blog together:
Among other things, Michael writes about trends and tips in retail for KORONA POS. His focus is on bringing small business owners a more holistic approach to growth. In his spare time, you'll find him hiking somewhere in the southwest. Connect with him on LinkedIn.