Internet Retailer asked retail industry insiders to gaze into their crystal balls to tell us what retail developments everyone will be talking about next year.

Delivery dominated ecommerce-related discussions in 2019. From Amazon’s push to remake Prime into a 1-day delivery program to Target’s successful expansion of its same-day delivery options to Shopify’s move to add logistics to the broad range of services it offers retailers, this was the year that consumers came to expect fast, easy delivery. While many retailers will spend much of next year looking for ways to match the delivery standards set by Amazon and other large merchants, there’s little doubt that there will be other developments that shake up the retail landscape next year. That’s why we’re asking retail industry insiders to gaze into their crystal balls to tell us what retail developments everyone will be talking about next year.

 

“2020 promises to be a year when everything is faster. More shoppers will be able to receive their purchases for same-day delivery and next day may become a standard shoppers expect for all their purchases. Store-based retailers will be an important cog in that process.”

—Lauren Freedman, senior consumer analyst at Internet Retailer’s parent company Digital Commerce 360

 

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”Despite the looming indicators that the economy may be in for a  slowdown, the strength of the retail sector will largely be dictated by consumer confidence, consumers’ perception of the economy and what they ultimately decide to do with their dollars. Consumers will continue to be budget conscious and savvy, they’ll continue to compare prices and look to ecommerce for deals. They’re likely to be more scrutinous in their spending.”

—Mike Rittler, general manager of retail card services, unsecured lending and business development at TD Bank

 

“Free or expedited delivery will become the norm as more retailers are forced to get aggressive with their shipping programs.”

—Darren Baldwin, director of development at workwear retailer Dungarees LLC

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“Sustainability and circular economy principles will become increasingly important to consumers. Brands will benefit by showing consumers they value sustainability and contribute to a ‘circular economy.’ That means demonstrating that they honor the values associated with sustainability through the use of recycled or upcycled products, streamlined shipping procedures, sustainable manufacturing processes and/or thoughtful packaging.”

—Deb Gabor, CEO of digital marketing firm Sol Marketing and author of “Irrational Loyalty.”

 

“Social commerce will hit an inflection point. It already has in China, but Instagram, WeChat and others unlock its potential.”

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—Jim Okamura, partner at retail consultancy McMillanDoolittle LLP

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