2024 Retail PEST Analysis

What will keep retail CEOs up at night in 2024?

As we ring in the new year, let’s examine macro factors affecting the global retail sector.

Top themes emerging from this 2024 retail PEST analysis include:

πŸ› GLOBAL RISKS: Wars, economic uncertainty and retail theft threaten retail companies, their supply chains and consumption habits.

πŸ› EVOLUTION: Retail media, AI and social shopping inspire retailers and brands to rethink their structures and processes for growth and productivity

πŸ› AGILITY: Automation, loyalty data and new fees help companies overcome labor shortages, cookie deprecation and rising product returns.

What are the top political trends affecting global retail in 2024?

Wars in Ukraine and the Middle East; 2024 elections in countries like the US, UK, Ukraine, Russia and India; the BRICS group of emerging markets grows with Saudi Arabia, UAE, Iran and others joining; escalating geopolitical tension and political polarization.

What are the top economic trends affecting global retail in 2024?

Consumers are less resilient due to inflation, credit card debt, student loan repayments, dwindling pandemic savings and high interest rates. Expect to see more mergers, acquisitions, bankruptcies, returns fees, and bold expansion by TikTok, Shein and Temu. Watch for shipping risks in the Red Sea that threaten global supply chains.

What are the top social trends affecting global retail in 2024?

We’ll see more pronounced retail bifurcation, as consumers buy high-end premium items as well as low-cost value goods. Labor shortages loom, as a record number of retail workers quit. Retail theft will continue to rise, including organized retail crime. Shopping malls are evolving to keep up with consumers’ omnichannel habits and expectations. Return to office mandates ignite consumption and social commerce continues to evolve.

What are the top tech trends affecting global retail in 2024?

AI is everywhere and brick-and-mortar stores evolve with digital screens, smart carts and smart fitting rooms for retail media, efficiency and personalized experiences. Cookie deprecation fuels demand for shopper data for brands and agencies to deliver more relevant retail media ads. Expect to see more RFID, less self-checkout, more luxury brands investing in digital and all-channel presence (e-commerce, social media and stores).

2024’s overarching theme is resilience, as companies navigate global market risks, tech table stakes and shifting consumer needs.

What factors would you add?

P.S. Happy New Year! Follow me in 2024 for global retail trends and strategy.

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