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The FMCG Trends That Are Transforming The Industry

The retail industry is rethinking the shopping experience in 2022, whether that's redefining how we shop and sell, all the way to evaluating the huge jump start the independent retailers have on their competition. In this blog, we decided to delve into the top trends of the FMCG industry in 2022 after the impact of the global pandemic.

The pandemic has changed how the world operates in more ways than just one. When it comes down to shopping trends, many forces have been at play - these trends have been affected drastically by consumers, businesses and larger governing bodies.

Over the last two years, many nations have adopted protocols that are designed to slow the spread of Covid-19, which affected business operations. With the introduction of lockdowns and new restrictions, it caused businesses to operate at a limited capacity, resulting in companies being forced to pivot and shift to sustain themselves whilst still having to operate for their customers.

The most significant impact of the pandemic on the global shopping industry is in fact the growth of e-commerce. However, the opportunities expand further than just this growth. Shopping trends that started in the pandemic have continued to grow and develop, which has created a unique situation in retail shopping and more.

The Retail Trends Shaping How We Shop

From a digitally-transformed shopping experience to global supply chain disruptions, as well as a pandemic that refuses to quit, there's always going to be one thing that retailers can count on - people are always going to shop. Whichever reasons fuel the motivations of your target market, here are some of the top trends that are shaping how consumers shop - and how you can stay ahead of the competition.

Digital Commerce -

The pandemic has permanently impacted shopping behaviours, which has affected most stages of the customer journey, from the discovery of new products and brands, to how shoppers track and return online orders. In many of the lockdowns, it created a shift towards online commerce for many consumers, especially for the 'slow digital adopters'. In many instances, this cohort was 'forced' into new ways of shopping, which involved unfamiliar digital touch-points on their path to purchase. Additionally, digital consumers started shopping online within categories that they would usually only visit in-store.

As Covid-19 restrictions eased across the UK, consumers reverted back to previous shopping habits. However, a significant number of consumers continue to browse, research and purchase online compared to the pre-pandemic numbers. The amount of online sales has risen from 19% in 2019, to 26% in 2021, with many categories seeing drastic changes in online sales persisting beyond the lockdowns.

Consumers are clearly starting to experience the greatest change in their shopping habits due to the pandemic and are definitely more likely to conduct a higher proportion of their shopping online, in comparison to shopping in-store, simply because they have experienced convenience and a bigger range of product choices.

Social Selling -

Social commerce has become one of the biggest digital trends within the retail industry, and it continues to grow. From selling on Instagram to launching an online store, retailers are starting to experiment with multiple new ways to meet the evolving needs of their customers, with 75% of sellers now selling on social media platforms.

Social selling, which is brought to you by e-commerce tools, helps retailers to reach more customers at a time when people are constantly on their devices and it's definitely working - 43% of retailers that sell on social platforms have said that 50%+ of their revenue comes from their social media sales.

Rapid Delivery -

Currently, there is a conflict between consumer expectations and the realities of Covid-19. Consumers may be doing a lot of their shopping online, however they still want access to their purchases as soon as possible. Customers are starting to expect quicker deliveries more than ever, and many online players with the likes of Amazon, have put a lot of effort into expediting this.

Free shipping can be seen as a deal-breaker for online shoppers. 90% of consumers say they would shop online more often if they had been given the option of free shipping. In addition to this, 24% of consumers have admitted that they would spend more to qualify for any free shipping deals - meaning that companies who offer free shipping, have a 20% higher conversion rate than those without this option.

Brick-And-Mortar Stores Remain -

Although online shopping is extremely popular and convenient, there's still a huge demand for some physical stores. Brick-and-mortar stores are brining in a social element that online stores can't provide. Businesses with the traditional brick-and-mortar stores are wise to enhance their shopping process with immersive experiences, which includes anything from innovative technology or even special sales events.

Another great way to enhance the in-person buying experience is to incorporate the use of mobile devices, which will help to create an omni-channel experience. As an example, a clothing retailer could place a QR code near some of their most popular items - this could then link to a look-book for styling certain pieces or similar items. Some stores encourage buyers to share photos of their experiences with branded hashtags, this will help to stimulate online engagement.

Investment in Technology -

With e-commerce and omni-channel shopping taking over 2022's FMCG trends, the importance of technology comes as no surprise at all. The most popular technology being introduced into the sector are QR codes, digital product testing, and predictive analytics that help to leverage the power of data to uncover revenue opportunities.

When considering new technology investments, it's easy for decision makers to look at the initial spend without giving themselves the chance to fully step back and assess the opportunities it could offer in the future. With the current supply chain uncertainties and increasing customer demand, FMCG technology is proving to be more important than ever.

It's also extremely important to assess the ROI of retail technology. Automation increases efficiency, and it also helps retailers get to the right decision a lot quicker - whilst demand forecasting and allocation software will provide the improved accuracy planning teams need to maximise their profits.

Sustainability -

Consumers are starting to become increasingly aware of the environmental impact of their actions and those of the larger community. Globally, 55% of consumers are more concerned about the environment due to Covid-19, with 35% of people paying more attention to sustainability. Consumers are starting to choose local produce or sustainable packaging in more significant numbers than ever before and according to some insights, two-thirds of consumers are willing to pay more money for sustainable products.

The FMCG Industry trends that we have mentioned in this blog only scratch the surface of trends that have developed over the last few years. Among other trends such as sustainable product development, manufacturing, packaging, and with the help of AI, Blockchain, as well as opportunities to increase customer engagement, experiences and satisfaction will only transform the sector drastically.

Identifying new opportunities and emerging technologies to implement into your business early on goes a long way when gaining a competitive advantage. It's definitely interesting to see all the new trends emerge and develop over the years, we cant wait to see what the future holds for the FMCG Industry.

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