Retail 2023: Back to the Future

Retail 2023: Back to the Future

Years ago, the year 2020 sounded very futuristic. Indeed, many corporate strategies were developed with “2020” in their title, no doubt to demonstrate how forward-thinking these companies hoped to be.

Yet here we now stand, almost three years past that notorious timestamp. And Parker Avery teams have still recently walked into the offices of billion-dollar retail clients to witness green screens and DOS prompts, along with a myriad of disparate, complex spreadsheets.

In that light, do we feel like “the future” is here in retail? Does it seem futuristic now? In some areas, yes. In other areas, not likely. Certainly, the COVID-19 pandemic propelled many omnichannel capabilities forward (albeit not initially perfect but they did keep the lights on). Unfortunately, for many retailers, other strategic capabilities are still rudimentary.

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The more important question regarding capabilities is: Where does it matter to be further out into the future? Where is good “good enough,” versus where should leaders be the Amazon compared to the competition’s AOL? Let’s look at key capability areas retail leaders must prioritize as we head into 2023.