Retail and e-tail: Room for new business models, less choice stress and returns

What do you want to be in 2025? In retail, developments continue to follow each other at a rapid pace. There will be more pressure on retailers to provide transparency about the origin and production.

Certainly if price differences between sustainable and less sustainable products become smaller, people will act more accordingly. Add to that the movement from possession to use and the greater resistance to throwing things away and you see a nice breeding ground for other business models. Think of Swapfiets.

There are still 2 major issues online

A. Consumers now have a hard time choosing online, if they don't really know what they are looking for. This is an issue, especially for large marketplaces such as Amazon and Alibaba. AI will provide an increasingly personalized offer. Filtering is then no longer necessary.

Two. The number of returns will decrease, because people get an increasingly realistic image of an article on the screen. Colors, materials, sizes, fits can be better estimated. This will contribute to the further growth of online.

There are more and more options for personalizing the offer. Certainly with large players that operate internationally, it is scalable to have products personalized by customers.

Physical stores: Even more experience

Offline shops will have to continue to experiment with their added value. The cash register disappears, and with that an important contact and additional sales moment. And if online inspiration and searching becomes even easier and delivery can be even more customized, the relevance of the physical store will decrease. The experience in the store is becoming increasingly important. The role of the store staff changes, especially when there is no cash register anymore.

The most important developments in a row

  • More attention to sustainability provides a basis for other business models
  • Growing international marketplaces that, thanks to AI, increasingly respond to the customer needs of individual people and can provide a more realistic picture of articles, which reduces returns.
  • More personalization direction for customers
  • New role for shops and shop employees

Do you recognize these challenges?

  • There is no clear vision of your future role as a retailer in the world of winner takes all, with giants such as Amazon and Alibaba.
  • Your formula is not future-proof.
  • You have a lot of customer data, but how do you create value for your company and for customers.
  • It is becoming increasingly difficult to position your brand in the violence of all the online offerings at large marketplaces
  • Your employees are insufficiently involved in your changing role.
  • Innovations take too long or are insufficiently customer-oriented. You will be outdone by new entrants.
  • Important (marketing) competences are missing in the company

Do you want to accelerate?

Branddoctors helps various customers to develop a new vision, determine their future role, map customer needs and develop propositions that make them more successful in the transition.


If you have become interested, send Heidi Wielens then an email or make an appointment via Ellen.

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What we work for
Positioning shift for Zoover: From holiday checker to decision aid
Positioning shift for Zoover: From holiday checker to decision aid
Leading positioning for new e-commerce initiatives around the Bol.com platform
Leading positioning for new e-commerce initiatives around the Bol.com platform
Partner, Strategist

Heidi Wielens