It’s the start of a new year, and with it comes the tradition of making resolutions and setting new goals. It’s an optimal time to examine the lessons learned from 2023, improve how things are done, and make the most of the opportunities every new year brings. And with that, for the business world, comes new opportunities to set new trends based on what was learned the year before: what we got right, what we got wrong, and everything in between.
At Credico, our primary objective is to help our retail partners increase sales and customer satisfaction. We’ve curated the top four in-store sales trends of 2024 as a guide to assist businesses in strategically growing their sales.
It’s in the name, and returns do just that — return your customers to your store. The holiday season shopping is no longer as hectic and chaotic as it used to be, so customers aren’t as nervous about returning their holiday gifts in-store. About a third (33%) of people expect to return Christmas gifts before the end of January, making the beginning of the year an excellent time for businesses. The chaotic December shopping days are long gone, and the in-store shopping experience is now associated with positive and productive sentiments for gift shopping and returns.
Allowing customers to return items they purchased online in-store can be a brilliant strategy to increase sales. This tactic is called BORIS, which stands for Buy Online and Return In-Store. According to DealNews, almost half of Americans (49%) prefer to return items in person, which indicates a significant preference for in-store returns. Therefore, providing this option can encourage more customers to visit your physical store and offer more opportunities to engage with them. However, this trend comes with a caveat: although returns may bring your customers back to your store, it is essential to be strategic in how your sales team converts those return sales into additional purchases.
As daunting as AI is for the world these days, it can actually be an ally in sales. According to the Artificial Intelligence In Retail Market Size & Share Analysis – Growth Trends & Forecasts report, the retail adoption of AI technologies like machine learning and deep learning is expected to grow from USD 7.30 billion in 2023 to USD 29.45 billion by 2028. AI in retail can boost your already awesome team. In-store businesses that invest in this technology will see a better CRM experience, improved safety and theft issues, and workflow management. Although this trend may appear to be an unexciting behind-the-scenes change at first, it could be the most impactful to your bottom line.
Rising delivery costs
Online shopping is a highly convenient option that saves people money on gas. However, the cost of delivering those items purchased online has increased recently due to various factors and has been since 2021. Inflation, labor costs, the need for more container space in the global trade environment, and rising fuel costs all contribute to the rise in delivery costs. There is little any individual business can do but react to this particular trend, but it’s one to keep an eye on as its impact shifts how companies do business.
The retail industry isn’t in a battle with the e-commerce industry. Retail is simply fighting to remain relevant, recognized, and seen as a collaborative part of the sales industry and the customer’s sales journey. That’s because retail isn’t dead, and there’s no yet after that statement. This year, retail stores continue to define and redefine their place in a digital world without compromising or denying the genuine convenience and joy of in-store shopping.
At Credico, we have a proud history of helping our partners achieve their goals, and we aim to continue doing so each and every year. We’ve been simplifying outsourced sales for Fortune 150, mid-market, and nonprofit organizations since 1991. It’s who we are, and it’s what we do. That is why we are confident that in-store shopping sales will make a comeback every year, which is no different for 2024. That said, 2024 brings new sales trends that will revive in-store shopping numbers and expectations.