A lot of things have happened in the last couple of years, and 2022 has not been any different. These economical and societal changes have impacted the way people buy products and services, especially since the Covid-19 breakout in 2020. That’s why it’s very important for marketers to learn about consumer behavior and the trends in the industry in order to build the most fitting strategy for their business.

But, how are retail consumers going to behave in 2023? What trends are retailers and e-commerce stores going to follow? Keep reading to find out.

Understanding the current situation

We’ve seen how e-commerce has increased in importance since 2020 due to the pandemic. When mobility restrictions were commonplace, marketers and businesses turned to the digital world to reach their customers and offer them their products and services. However, brick-and-mortar stores have slowly recovered their activity in the last year.

Also, consumers have become more mindful about how they spend their money. According to a survey conducted by business experience platform Medallia, pricing has become one of the main factors that affect purchase decisions due to the current rising inflation.

They’ve also become more picky when it comes to the e-commerce experience. Fast deliveries and free shipping options are, for instance, some of the most important aspects when shopping online, as PowerReviews exposes.

Is this kind of consumer behavior and these preferences going to continue in the next year? Let’s see the predictions.

Consumer behavior in 2023

A lot of studies and predictions have been made about how consumer behavior is going to evolve during the next year. This helps marketers determine how they are going to build their next strategies and prepare themselves for possible unexpected situations.

Taking into account the predictions made by consultancy company Forrester and intelligence agency Mintel, consumer behavior in 2023 is going to be defined by the following aspects:

  • The preference between quality over quantity.
  • Separate digital and in-store experiences.
  • An increase in spending in spite of the increasing inflation.
  • Spending driven by intentionality and sustainability, focusing on local stores.
  • Focus on personal wellbeing and connecting with what consumers think it’s important.

Let’s see how these circumstances are going to affect retail and e-commerce trends in 2023.

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Top 4 retail and e-commerce trends for 2023

1. Intentional purchases are on the rise

As commented in the previous section, in spite of being in a situation of growing inflation and uncertainty, people are not going to shy away from spending money on the things they really need. While some argue whether spending is going to increase or not, what it’s certain is that purchases are going to be more mindful and intentional.

This means that consumers are going to do more research about the products they are planning to acquire, like spending more on durable and quality goods that have more probability to pass the test of time, compared to low-quality products.

The usage of UGC will be an important aspect for businesses when building their marketing strategies as social proof is proven to be quite effective.

2. In-store shopping and e-commerce are going to have different roles

We can see that we are already experiencing this trend right now. Although brick-and-mortar stores are gradually becoming more active, they are still not reaching pre-pandemic levels. And this is because physical stores have become more of a showroom to display new products and let the consumer experience these products in real life. In short, it is a way for retailers to inspire customers and create unique experiences for them.

On the other hand, in a world where people demand what they want and can have it instantly, e-commerce has become a must for retailers in order to meet consumer needs. For consumers, e-commerce is convenient, fast and a sure bet when they need to acquire something quickly, so we can affirm that it’s here to stay.

3. The normalization of chatbots

Having quality customer service is a crucial aspect for any retail store. For this reason, the usage of automation tools such as chatbots has become really important to save time and, overall, increase efficiency.

Chatbots, in particular, can be useful to automate aspects such as FAQs or provide personalized information regarding the need a specific customer may have, offering a 24/7 service. It can also help gather information that can be used to create quality insights that can be useful for future business or marketing strategies based on personalization.

4. The rise of social media and new technologies

In relation to the first two points, the use of social media and new technologies such as VR, AR, or even contactless and cashless technology will be really helpful to offer unique shopping experiences to consumers.

Social commerce and live streaming shopping, for instance, are on the rise. As we explained, consumers shop in e-commerce stores mainly for convenience, so being able to purchase products directly through social media platforms and live streaming apps seems like the perfect deal, don’t you think?

The Gen-Z generation is changing the game on how to sell products and both retailers and marketers need to step up their game to meet their audience’s needs.

The world of e-commerce and retail is a lot different from what they used to be pre-pandemic, so adapting and taking into account the new trends is crucial to create a successful sales and marketing plan. Are you already following any of these trends?

How is consumer behavior changing in 2023?

There are some aspects that will define customer behaviors in 2023, like the preference of quality, intentional purchases and sustainability, focus on personal wellbeing and separate experiences for online and in-store shopping.

What e-commerce and retail trends are going to shape 2023?

Due to the increasing inflation, intentional purchases are going to grow during the next year. Also, technology is going to be more present with chatbots and new forms of shopping, like social commerce and live streaming shopping. Last but not least, e-commerce is going to be dedicated to fast and instant shopping, while physical stores are going to be saved for providing unique experiences to consumers.