A Guide to Fulfilling Your Customers This Shopping Season

    By Kerry Lee, Retail Client Principal

    Kerry Lee

    Are retailers ready for the post-pandemic bounce back and, with it, the changes in buying culture?   

    As we prepare for a booming shopping season, retailers are doing all they can to keep up with and influence ever-changing customer demand.   

    With 47% of shoppers claiming their high street is no longer relevant to them and the recent decline in online-only shopping (down 26.7%), retailers have been forced to reimagine how they meet customer needs and adapt to remain relevant amidst constantly evolving shopping trends. 


    Cost is a priority this winter for consumers and retailers alike

    With mortgage rates and rental costs remaining uncomfortably high, retailers should expect delays in the shopping rush as consumers take advantage of the Black Friday deals whilst 45% are already planning their spend and budget ahead of Christmas. 

    As a response to the economic climate, shoppers are inclined to prioritise essential purchases over luxury items, according to British Retail Consortium (BRC) insight director Kris Hamer. With environmental concerns also growing, Currys reports that 36% of shoppers are likely to buy second-hand tech and 29% would be more likely to buy refurbished rather than new devices to reduce their environmental footprint.  

    But can Christmas really defy the constraints of economic and environmental reality? 

    Consumers now lean towards gifting one valued item to family and friends, instead of opting for multiple smaller items, seeking more fulfilment from their purchases (and minimising the waste after Christmas!). 

    But with UK retailers also facing a £470m-per-year rise in business rates next year, cost efficiency needs to be at the top of their priority list! 

    Understanding Your Customers Amidst The ONline Retail Downturn

    Following the lockdown that occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic, shoppers are now visiting their high-street to seek the Christmas magic and experience buying their gifts to ensure value for money. But what does this mean for online retail? 

    For many online-only retailers, this shopping season will be their make-or-break, after sales fell by a record 10.5% in 2022. Online retailers are now forced to progress to a ‘physical’ store and reinvent their customer service to remain relevant. But delivery tracking and returns must be key investment priorities, as 89% of consumers prefer ease of returns when purchasing online. 

    For retailers with both a physical and online presence, it’s still just as important to have a seamless digital presence to support the physical store. Reports show that multichannel retailers were up by 5.5% this year in the ‘gifting’ category - benefiting from click-and-collect, and add-on sales and efficiencies in returns.

    How to meet your customers' needs and thrive amidst an uncertain shopping season

    Innovating and refreshing your products and services are a great way to grow your offering and re-engage with your customers. 

    Retailers like Nike and Allure are leaning into technology to innovate their in-store customer journey, creating hybrid, frictionless, personalised and immersive experiences that blend digital and physical seamlessly.  

    Loyalty schemes are a great way to entice customers and gain competitive advantage. App-based VIP rewards offer exclusive incentives for members and a direct channel for retailers to cross-sell and increase their range into new categories, faster. 

    Today’s shoppers expect unique and thoughtful relationships with brands, with leading retailers offering customisation services to add value to the buying experience, differentiate from online, and give shoppers a reason to visit stores. 

    Interested in innovating in retail?

    We visited the booming high street to see how big retailers like Nike, Google, and Lego are leveraging tech to entice shoppers into their spaces and engage them once inside.  

    Or if you’re ready to start revolutionising your customer experience, contact us today to see how BJSS can help.