Professional Jeweller attended Millennial 2020, a conference on the future of retail, to hear insights from some of the biggest companies and experts in the market.

Here, we report the top five trends driving retail and e-commerce this year, as shared by Håkan Thyr, director of strategic partnerships at London-based software company Channeladvisor, at the conference.



Thyr says this year the gap between businesses with and without omnichannel will widen, exposing those not prepared for the future of retail. Consumers need a constant experience wherever they are shopping, and in 2018 it is more important than ever to streamline channels and make this seamless.



Experts are predicting this year that the number of transactions made on mobile will surpass desktop, but revenue will remain higher on desktop as smaller screens are used for smaller purchases. With the majority of traffic coming from mobiles though, businesses need to think ‘mobile first’ not ‘mobile also’.



Increasingly consumers want purchases as soon as possible, so Channeladvisor says we will see a lot of innovation in logistics this year as retailers battle to meet fast-shopper demands.



What’s App messaging has taken over emails as the biggest form of communication, and as a result, retailers need to rethink the best ways to connect with consumers.



Voice commerce may not yet be disrupting the jewellery industry, but Channeladvisor warns that as consumers embrace devices such as Alexa, retailers and brands need to think about how they can work with Amazon to become part of the consumer discovery process when they are asking Alexa questions.


Giving a sneak peek into trends set disrupt the retail market next year, Håkan Thyr says cryptocurrency will be bigger and consumers will place a greater emphasis on ethics. He also predicts a revival of the high street, with innovative retail experiments poised to bring consumers back.