Written by Bobby Nairn, One Step Retail Marketing Manager

Our experts are sharing the most sensible trends and innovations that inspired conversation at NRF’s Big Show & Expo. We understand how easy it can be to get distracted by the latest toys on showcase at NRF each year. But we believe these particular developments can very easily be implemented to greatly improve your shopping experience while capturing the attention of today’s consumers.

First and foremost, making a change to your business can be challenging, to say the least. So I wanted to share a few thoughts from Target’s CEO, Brian Cornell, on how to reimagine your store and reinvent your brand. Now, these will most likely sound familiar but I believe it’s the perfect reminder before accomplishing your upcoming projects in 2019.

  • Put your customers at the heart of all of your decisions. 
  • Invest in your shopping experience and staff.
  • And get ready to disrupt the way you do things.

It’s not rocket science, right? Customer's expectations of retailers are always evolving. The simple fact of the matter is, technology has changed the way we shop and interact. Digital transformation has been the tagline fueling change across our industry.

Now, when you're ready to “transform your shopping experience," think how can this change make my customers experience easier, faster, safer, more convenient and more enjoyable. Invest your dollars in tools that will improve your processes and streamline your customer journey (digital, technology, fulfillment). And of course, invest in the team that makes it all possible. I’m not sure that anyone is a huge fan of change but disrupting the usual is essential to the success of retailers in our digitally-driven world, so get started!

Here’s where our experts believe you should focus your energy in 2019…

Our Experts Rewind

© 2019 One Step Retail Solutions

4 Practical Trends for Your 2019 Customer Experience

Bobby Nairn

Improving Data Security

Data security is the #1 priority for retailers this year, which makes sense, especially when you consider how much data is being leveraged by brands. Factor in the recent announcements of legislative requirements and you’ll understand why data security is top of mind throughout the industry. It has been a rough run for retailers as the most compromised industry for the past 5 years, so it’s promising to hear that data security is finally receiving the attention it deserves. Hackers have continued to view retailers as the lowest hanging fruit while 50% of retailers experienced a data breach last year (up from 19% in 2017!) If this wasn’t already at the very top of your to-do list, join the 84% of retailers that will increase IT security spending this year.

Connected Commerce

I know, everyone is tired of hearing about “omnichannel.” But the truth is, very few retailers have gotten it right. 2019 is the year of connected commerce. Finally capitalizing on a relevant and seamless experience across all retail channels. Convenience drives purchasing decisions. Customers demand the same experience whether they shop in-store, online, from their mobile device, in your app or at your latest pop-up shop. All with the ability to select how, when, and where their order will be fulfilled. As a retailer, you require complete visibility across all channels. You should know who your customers are regardless of how they choose to shop. Their information, purchase history, Wishlist items, and loyalty points are at your fingertips. You understand where your inventory is located at all times and with one click can ship an item from a distribution center or store of your choice. Now that sounds like somewhere I’d like to shop. 


RFID tags are proving to be a valuable asset to any retailer’s omnichannel strategy. Garnering praise as an important tool for improving inventory management and visibility across all retail channels. From a retailers perspective, this should help to identify any inconsistencies in stock delivery from a shipping center. As well as provide store associates with an up to the moment view of product availability and location with exceptional accuracy. Intelligent labels are reported to improve efficiencies, enhance customer experiences, and strengthen your return on investment. It’s only a matter of time before intelligent labels are implemented across the retail industry.

Intelligent Labels

It is essential that retailers consider their mobile experience and strategy in 2019. More than half of all e-commerce traffic is taking place on a mobile device while mobile shopping activity continues to grow at an extraordinary pace. This past Thanksgiving weekend featured mobile devices attributing to 47% of all revenue. While for the first time in history, mobile devices contributed to more orders placed than desktop computers. Shoppers are also turning to their smartphones for assistance throughout the buying journey. They view product info, compare prices, and read reviews both before and while present inside your physical store. It has become very clear that mobile is an incredibly lucrative channel in today’s shopping experience. This should encourage retailers to aim for a seamless mobile experience presented with speed and convenience in mind, as more than half of shoppers will abandon a mobile site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. And don’t forget to keep a close eye on social commerce too!

Customers’ expectations are always evolving. Which means a retailer’s shopping experience should be too. The start to a new year is the perfect opportunity for reflection and to avoid getting stuck in your old ways. We hope these trends will help inspire your next move. 

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When the road curves, remember to swerve—change is inevitable but your growth is optional. To explore more relevant ideas for improving your customer journey, sign up below.

Improving the Customer Journey

NRF 2019 Retail's Big Show + EXPO

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