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In the quest for loyalty, retailers will increasingly design their stores to be hubs for social connection and community engagement.
Successful retailers will create a symbiotic relationship with communities, providing workshops and classes, hosting talks, or facilitating communal gatherings. Spaces that double as vibrant hubs that nurture social connection and collective growth can attract new customers and further brand loyalty, elevating local citizens in the process.
As consumers seek more purposeful brands, brands will seek more purposeful solutions.
Brands incorporating environmentally-friendly practices will employ design and implementation strategies that embrace and elevate existing spaces. Creative retail design strategies — minimizing architectural interventions, giving new life to existing elements, and creating flexible and resilient systems — help retailers create an authentic sense of place.
CX is critical, but EX will unlock meaningful brand connections.
Brands have long recognized and invested in the importance of CX — the consumer experience — to drive relevance and resonance with customers. Moving forward, they will need to adopt a higher level of care in their EX — the employee experience. Investments in training, education, and employee space will attract and retain retail employees and create a level of engagement that extends through to customers.
Brands are unlearning convention to make places more inclusive.
Brands are showing customers they understand one size does not fit all and that identities are plural in nature. Retailers are celebrating individuality and diversity with spaces designed to represent gender fluidity. They are offering products and services catering to neurodiversity and disability challenges. And they are acknowledging the important nuances of race, culture, size, and age — all to help cast aside stereotypes.