It’s possible to see the future of retail by analyzing the latest new store launches.
New stores and formats provide direction on where food and drug retail is headed because they are driven by the latest angles in store development, consumer behavior, technology innovation and other aspects. This is a good time to consider new directions as we look ahead to 2022.
Emerging In-store Technology
One of the important 2022 trends will be the growth of in-store technology. A key example is the evolution of checkout technology by numerous retailers. A case in point is the launch of the largest Amazon Fresh store, featuring Just Walk Out technology. The 35,000-sq.-ft. store, which recently opened in Westmont, Ill., gives customers the option of skipping traditional checkouts by making use of a virtual cart enabled by the Amazon app. The technology enables customers to add items to their virtual cart as they shop, and to finish their transactions and exit the store after scanning an in-store QR code.
All of these new stores and formats can be considered retail labs for borrowing ideas as we move into 2022. However, retailers will need to do the hard work of figuring out which ideas are relevant for their own customer bases. Every new year seems like a puzzle waiting for the pieces to be filled in. Retailers can tap into some of these ideas to fit together puzzle pieces for their market areas.