Retail, how 2023 went and what to expect from 2024

Retail, how 2023 went and what to expect from 2024

A point about the world of retailthe one offered by Confimpresein collaboration with Global Strategywith his “Survey Retail Barometer” for the years 2023-2024, from which a panorama full of challenges and opportunities emerges. With a sample of companies ranging from catering (33%) to clothing and accessories (15%), up to a broad spectrum of other retail (52%), which includes sectors such as health, wellness and food retail, the analysis offers a significant insight into current dynamics and future expectations.

Performance analysis 2023

In 2023, approximately 80% of companies, with a greater concentration in catering And other retailreported one turnover growth. This increase was accompanied by an increase in the average receipt, an experience experienced by two thirds of respondents, compared to visits to the store, indicated by 50% of respondents which instead decreased. The sector ofclothingin particular, suffered from a decline in visits.

Adapting to rising costs has seen 75% of clothing and accessories companies apply price increases, with a wide variation in increases: from 34% indicating increases between 0 and +5%, to 33% with increases between +6% and +20%. Even more important are the figures of catering which 89% raised prices and, of these, 33% in line with the increase in costs. The more containedother retail which for 36% did not raise prices at all. Despite these moves, half of the companies increased promotional initiatives, but only a third raised the average level of discount applied to the final consumer.

Expectations 2024

Looking to 2024, over 50% of companies anticipate a growing consumption trend, with turnover growth expectations for over 60% of respondents. The strategy for attracting customers varies depending on the sector: fromclothing which focuses on channel management, to catering which focuses on the offer, up to the focus on the customer experience for theother retail.

In terms of investmentsa focus on is expected communication and marketing for clothing and accessories, on staff training for catering, and oncustomer experience activities for other retail. This approach reflects the desire to strengthen brand positioning, guarantee high service standards and provide a personalized shopping experience.

E-commerce trend

L’e-commerce, despite representing an important sales channel, in 2023 it generated less than 5% of turnover for around 60% of those interviewed, with a third not using it at all. However, 40% of respondents expect one growth in the incidence of these channels on turnover in 2024signaling a potential evolution in online sales strategies.

In summary, In 2023, the retail sector has navigated through the economic turbulence with a resilience that reflects both the challenges and opportunities that have emerged in this period of transformation. About 80% of the participants “Survey Retail Barometer”with a particular focus on catering And other retailrevealed revenue growth, underlining an upward trend despite global uncertainties.

This growth is mainly attributed toincrease in the average receipt, an experience shared by two thirds of respondents. An interesting data, which suggests that consumers are found to spend more per purchase, despite visiting stores less frequently. Approximately 75% of companies responded to this dynamic adjusting price lists upwardsa necessary move to cover the increase in operating costs, but which did not prevent approximately 70% of those interviewed, especially in the catering and of theother retail, to report a decline in margins. Surprisingly, only 20% of participants directly blame inflation for the decline in margins, suggesting that other factors, such as internal management and pricing strategies, play crucial roles.

Looking to 2024, more than half of the sample anticipates a growing consumption trend, projecting a climate of optimism which translates into expectations of an increase in turnover for over 60% of participants. However, 50% declare that they have no plans to increase promotional initiatives, with a significant 40% preparing to apply further increases to price lists.

For attract and retain customersretail sectors will adopt targeted strategies. Apparel will focus on increasing personalized experiences and integrating physical and digital channels. The catering sector will focus on the variety of the offer and on attentive and immediate service, while the other retail sector will focus on providing personalized assistance and improving the shopping experience.

Investments will follow the priorities of each sector: communication and marketing for clothing, staff training for catering, And improving the customer experience for other retail. These choices reflect a commitment to strengthening brand positioning, ensuring high standards of service and offering a unique and personalized customer experience.

Finally, the relationship with thee-commerce shows some caution, with around 60% of respondents generating less than 5% of their revenue through these channels in 2023. A figure that highlights the persistent centrality of the physical channel, despite an expected increase in the incidence of e-commerce for around 40% of respondents in 2024.

In conclusion, theability to predict and respond to emerging trends, together with a holistic approach that embraces both digital and physical channels, is the winning path for retailers. While the digital continues to play a crucial role, the importance oftangible and personalized shopping experience in the physical store remains essential, marking a synergy between technological innovation and tradition that will characterize the future of the sector.

In this context, attention to marginalityalong with strategic use of promotions And discountsand a renewed focus on the integration and optimization of sales channels, outline a path which, although challenging, is full of opportunities for the retail sector as a whole.

*Director of Mark up And Gdoweek



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