Insights / Industry Perspectives / Digital Retail Trends — Weekly Digest #5


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Digital Retail Trends — Weekly Digest #5

December 14, 2020

As 2020 slowly winds down, the holidays remain the primary focus of the industry. Since we have already written extensively about how retailers are tackling the COVID-affected holidays, for this week’s recap of the biggest and most interesting industry news we have chosen to look in a different direction.

With the turn of the year almost upon us, there is plenty of relevant analysis and predictions of emerging trends that are already shaping the industry or will soon begin to do so. Our weekly retail industry digest dives into a few of those that have piqued our curiosity and touches upon several pieces of news indicative of where we are headed going forward. Here are the latest retail industry news, trends, and hot takes.

What’s new in the digital retail world

The rise of warehouse automation has been one of the key factors in the growth of e-commerce. With the global pandemic ushering in an unprecedented acceleration of e-commerce, the widespread adoption of automation is bound to follow suit. Logistics Manager dives deep into how different automation techniques are shaping the present and the future of retail.

AI is on the rise! In its recent analysis, Forrester predicts that the global AI software market will grow to $37 billion by 2025. This estimate is not as optimistic as other analysts and investors have predicted, but still represents a clear indicator of how this technological area will continue to shape and evolve the industry in the years to come.

As in-store shopping has taken a huge hit during the pandemic, opportunistic retailers are trying to infuse the experience component into online shopping, and “live commerce” is the latest buzzword. Read on to find out what live commerce is and why many predict it will play a greater role in the post-pandemic world.

Comfort over experience! The pandemic has had a dramatic impact on retailers, but also on the consumer. This holiday season has revealed just how much the global shutdown has affected consumer choices and Retail Dive details the dramatic shift in shopping habits compared to holiday seasons of yore.

As IoT continues to play a greater role in our everyday lives, countries around the world are trying to regulate this area in order to make it both more secure and more standardized. The recent signing of the Internet of Things (IoT) Cybersecurity Improvement Act represents an attempt to regulate the standards for the procuring of IoT devices by the US government, adding a federal level to the growing pool of state-imposed requirements. (retailconsumerproductslaw)

Cutting out the noise! Australia-based retail chain Kmart has launched a “quiet space” low-sensory program aiming to provide a less loud and stress-free shopping experience. The program allocates two pre-scheduled weekly hours during which the in-store environment changes towards dimmed lights, lowered volumes, and no PA announcements. (

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