Compared to 25 years ago, today's retail experience is a world apart. Almost anything can be ordered, delivered and picked up rapidly, often customised to personal preferences at no extra cost. The smartphone has created a world of limitless consumer expectation and logistical possibility. So how much further can it go? What will the retail experience look like in ten, twenty, or even fifty years - and how should companies, big and small, be preparing? Amazon may still loom large, say industry experts Robin Lewis and Michael Dart, but now they'll actually be profitable, as mobile shopping becomes the norm. More importantly, the primacy of access over ownership, and experience over material goods, will force retailers to transform their offerings. Demographic trends, like the glut of seniors and the declining marriage rate, and societal trends, like income polarisation and continued urbanization, will have surprising effects on which brands and products take center stage. And the double-edged sword of technology will be fully apparent: no more cards or cash, but pervasive fear of fraud and surveillance from the dark Web and the rise of A.I.. In their previous book, The New Rules of Retail, Lewis and Dart predicted nearly every defining characteristic of today's marketplace - and the industry snapped it up in two editions. Here, they do the same for the next era, where retailers will have to be ready for anything.
Michael Dart is a retail specialist and visionary who advises retail and consumer companies on how best to navigate retail's seismic shifts. He combines his economics and finance training from Oxford University and the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania with over 25 years of consulting with AT Kearney & Bain & Co. to provide a unique and creative perspective on the future. Regularly quoted in the press--including The Wall Street Journal and Financial Times--he is a popular speaker with keynote addresses at many global retail conferences, including the WWD CEO Summit and the Global Department Store Summit. Robin Lewis is the founder and CEO of The Robin Report and has consulted for dozens of retail and consumer product companies. He is frequently quoted in Time magazine, the Chicago Sun Times, Financial Times, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Brand Week, and Advertising Age, and he appears regularly on CNBC, Fox News, and Good Morning America. He is a sought-after speaker and has delivered keynote addresses at the World Retail Congress, ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers), Brazil Retail Federation and various other financial, corporate and academic conferences. He is based in New York City.