Did you know that in 2017 sales on Cyber Monday exceeded Black Friday sales by $1.5 billion? If any stat highlights the transition from physical stores to the online world, this is it. As well as the industry itself going through some changes, the way we receive information has changed too. Rather than reading magazines, we like to follow blogs about the retail world.
Whether you want a blog that focuses on the customers or the layout/design of a website, the internet has everything these days. As a result, we?ve decided to compile a list of our favorite retail blogs below. While some have humor and others dish out the facts that we all need, they all provide value in their own way.
1. Retail Customer Experience
Firstly, we wanted to start with a blog all about the customer. What can retailers do to ensure a positive experience for the customer? Without customers, the retail industry would crumble so this blog looks at how we can provide a great experience before, during, and after a sale.
On this blog, you?ll find a whole host of different posts and this is one of the things we love about Retail Customer Experience. As you would expect, they often do tips and tricks for those in the retail industry. For example, how to train workers with a POS solution or digital solutions of which we should all be aware.
However, perhaps their real value comes from case studies and in-depth reports. They recently posted a article on the digital transformation of Walmart, offering an interview with the Chief Technology Officer and Executive Vice President. Alongside this, they have a report on 5G, the importance of mobile coupons, the psychology behind retail marketing, and the threats currently causing problems for retail brands.
2. Shopify Plus
For many, this is their ?go-to? retail blog and it?s not hard to see why. With an awesome team of writers and editors, Shopify never fails to deliver high-quality content and we don?t see this changing in the near future. As well as tips, guides, and general informational pieces, Shopify Plus is fantastic at choosing an eCommerce topic and then beautifully delivering pieces around this topic over the course of several weeks.
Whether you need introductory guides, success stories, data-based blogs, or you just want to improve your understanding of the industry, this is one of the best blogs you will find on the internet.
Although you will find their blogs lean towards their own platforms sometimes, this is by no means a constant theme. Ultimately, it seems the platform has been set up to help those who want to grow in the eCommerce market. Whether you?re an absolute beginner or have more experience, Shopify Plus will have something to offer.
3. Retail Doctor
When looking for a reliable retail blog, you want an individual or a brand that has experience; this is exactly what we have with Bob Phibbs. As a consultant for retail, the so-called ?Retail Doctor? has worked with Paul Mitchell, LEGO, and Mastercard (impressive, right?).
Over the years, Phibbs has built a reputation for his work in improving physical stores, optimizing sales teams, marketing, and increasing overall sales. Yet, he still finds time to post regularly on a blog and the insights we receive provide real value. What?s great about this blog is that, as well as the retail-themed articles, he also posts theoretical situations and more general life pieces, too.
4. Forrester Retail
As a market research company, Forrester is one for those who like detail and reports. How will new technology continue to impact the business environment? How can digital technologies be introduced in brick-and-mortar stores? Should we start with AI or automation?
For us, the simple fact that the collection of blogs and podcasts on the website are called ?Insights? says everything. If you choose Forrester, that?s exactly what you?ll get on a broad range of topics.
5. Shopify Retail
While Shopify Plus deals with their enterprise software team and eCommerce, Shopify Retail offers articles on more general retail topics. Since this is a trusted name and they?ve helped many retailers in the past, we would be doing you a disservice without including this blog in the list.
As well as themes like crowdfunding and influencers, Shopify Retail is a brilliant resource for those beginner guides. Just recently, they posted two complete guides on how to create a business plan and developing a new product from start to finish. These aren?t just basic guides ? they lay out actionable steps one can take to actually make progress.
6. Medallion Retail
We?ve looked at customers, eCommerce, and retail reports, but what about retail marketing? Well, this is where Bradley Daves and Medallion Retail steps in. How can you choose the best signage for your store? What?s happening at the major retail marketing conferences? Daves will keep you updated with posts that are easy to read and digest.
Why did we choose Medallion Retail for this list? In truth, it goes beyond the topics Daves covers. We absolutely love the storytelling he uses with his posts. It makes the content much easier to follow. You never walk away from the blog thinking you?ve wasted time.
7. Retail Dive
If you?ve heard of Industry Dive, you?ll know they are a company responsible for business news and analysis for millions of executives across several industries. Did you know they also have a retail blog covering marketing, technology, eCommerce, mobile technology, logistics, trends, and more?
In addition to the informational content, you?ll also find some very interesting opinion-based articles and studies.
You may know this name for their credit card readers used by small business owners right across the country, but their blog can be just as influential. Much like their product, they look at ways to become more effective and efficient in any market. Through finance management, growth strategies, data insights, marketing, and previous customer success stories, there are plenty of opportunities to learn from Square.
Of course, there will be mentions of their product and some posts dedicated to product updates and success stories. As long as you visit expecting this, you shouldn?t have any problems and the content will go a long way.
9. Vend Blog
For all retail managers, supervisors, and store owners, Francesca Nicasio knows what it?s like to be in your position and that?s what makes this blog so relatable. An expert in POS software and the retail industry in general, there?s a focus on finding solutions to the major problems faced by retail companies.
We like the brilliant blend of small and large issues; while some posts will deal with day-to-day problems, others will delve into the huge challenges the industry faces in the future. From beating the competition to dealing with technology, the posts inform and then provide advice on action one can take.
In addition to the blog, the weekly newsletter is also worth your consideration. Within each edition, you?ll find a selection of the best retail articles from around the internet, so you also learn from other sources.
10. National Retail Federation (NRF)
Finally, we have the largest retail trade association in the US and a large supporter of retailers for well over a century. Inside their blog, we can learn about consumer trends, eCommerce, technology, small businesses, and the economy.
Often, they will also carry out studies to assess the state of a particular industry or niche. For example, they recently released research on compensation data, HR, and general practices within the industry.
If you need even more content, you can also follow the podcast and online magazine.
Start Following Today
With these 10 retail blogs, you have everything you need to start learning and gaining insights into the retail world. Whether you?ve been in retail for 50 years or are just starting in 2019, you should find something useful in this list. We?re living in a world where knowledge and understanding is important, so these blogs could allow you to stay ahead of the competition.