The State of Retail Post-Covid

The world of retail has changed forever. The age-old business model of the high street is failing, and mcommerce is opening the door to the future.

Over the last 18 months, we’ve seen longstanding brands like Bonmarché, Bensons for Beds, Debenhams, DW Sports, Edinburgh Woollen Mill, Monsoon and Victoria’s Secret all suffer in the British retail market due to the effects of the pandemic.

Recently, Apadmi investigated the importance of a single customer view and in-store apps, as well as the latest concept of retail resilience post-pandemic – but we wanted to take our support of the retail sector further.

Apadmi invested in Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year, detailing the retail sector in its entirety, the challenges faced by retailers right now and the solutions that could be implemented to save their businesses.

In the report, we look at three key challenges within the market at the moment – we’ve broken them down here to give you a little preview of the report, and how it can support your business.

Challenge: The modern retail shopper

The expectations of consumers changed greatly in 2020, tilting the balance away from the high street and towards online sales. UK online sales exceeded expectations in 2020-2021, with a 36% year-on-year growth that set the highest yearly percentage gain since 2007.

While COVID-19 certainly contributed to this meteoric rise, a more in-depth analysis of the research offers another explanation – the move away from desktop to mobile. 

Mobile has overtaken desktop for the first time as the main device that consumers use to search online, with 55% of all internet searches now taking place on mobile devices. 

Advanced data modelling and predictive forecasting have shown that around 54% of all UK retail e-commerce sales in 2021 will take place on a mobile device. 

So, for retailers, it’s more important than ever to embrace change, adapt to new user behaviours and embrace a mobile-first approach. 

But where can a retailer get the most bang for their buck on a mobile platform? 

What does the modern retail consumer want the most?

In our latest research

We seek to answer these questions and more about the modern retail customer in Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year.

Challenge: The future of mobile experiences

From an experience perspective, mobile is always evolving. 

We’ve seen several revolutions in the way users interact with their devices from the touchscreen take over of the late-2000s, to the recent boom in voice technology. 

Alongside these hardware changes, we’ve also witnessed an iterative evolution within user experience design, as companies have actively optimised their customer journeys. 

The pandemic presented a new challenge in general customer experience though; several traditional customer experiences are no longer possible or suitable, including trying on clothes, fittings and several types of demonstrations. 

Companies must change their offering to present new customer experiences that allow them to stand out from the pack.

In Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year, we examine the retail experiences customers are the most excited about in the coming year, and suggest some mobile-based options to help your business stand out in the post-covid retail sector.

“We’ve been saying it for years; the future is mobile. People spend more time browsing on their phones now than they do browsing the high street and that’s only going to continue post-covid. Mobile is becoming the lead sales platform for many businesses and that will continue through 2021 and beyond.”

Nick Black, Co-Founder at Apadmi

Challenge: Transitioning to a mobile-based economy

The transition towards a mobile-based retail economy brings with it new challenges for brands, particularly around the collection, use and interpretation of data.

Thankfully, with mobile apps, retailers can start to own data and use it as a strategic asset to understand the nuances of customer behaviour, connect the customer journey and ultimately drive greater business performance. 

For this to work, brands need to combine data from all their platforms (websites, mobile, in-store, social and search) to identify gaps and challenges.

Native mobile apps, which are developed to run on native operating systems like Android and iOS, can help brands overcome some of these challenges and deliver a more personalised and memorable browsing and buying experience. 

The average smartphone user, for example, spends more than 3 hours per day using mobile apps, typically visiting nine different apps every 24 hours. 

To win people’s time, however, mobile apps must offer significant emotional and rational motivators. When done correctly, this can help retailers reach new audiences, increase conversions, reward customers and drive brand loyalty.

In Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year, we look at what matters to your customers and how small implementations of data can create brand loyalty on a large scale. We pool the advice of industry leaders to offer insight from both sides of the till and give you the information you need to maximise data usage throughout your business.

“The retail industry is facing some of its greatest challenges. The high street is rapidly falling behind mobile and digital as a primary source of revenue. Customers are being empowered to find cheaper alternatives to their regular shopping choices. New entrants into the retail sector are causing constant disruption. It’s taking more and more skill to stand out in the market.”

Marcus Hadfield, Chief Strategy Officer at Apadmi

Solution: Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year

Each of these areas presents a unique challenge for the retail sector, but these challenges are also opportunities for many. 

Disruption in any industry offers a chance for new and old businesses to rise above their competitors. 

Armed with Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year, your business will be able to make informed strategic decisions, react positively to the challenges facing your industry and better guarantee long-term success.

Discover our report

Download Going Mobile: The Only Retail Report You Need To Read This Year today and take the first step towards overcoming the challenges within the retail industry.
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