Is Your Speciality Thriving? Retail Trends #3

As our third feature in our 2018 Retail Trends report; in this edition we’ll be focusing on speciality and how a new trend of specialist retailers is rising. From our local cheese monger Mons, whose selection of cheeses is outstanding to Pip and Nut, a healthy nut butter company, who are now dominating the nut butter market on the high street, as well as with independent retailers. These speciality businesses are leading the way, focusing on exactly what they know – and refining it to perfection.

In partnership with visual merchandising consultants The Metamorphosis Group, this forecast highlights some of the key consumer issues we believe are, and will have a major impact on the retail industry over the coming months. It is our hope that it give you a glimpse into the behavioural mindset of today’s shoppers; your customers!

We post in bite size chunks and don’t forget to check out our Next Steps at the bottom – questions every retailer should be asking themselves. To download the full Retail Trends 2018 white paper, click here.

Specialism Will Thrive

There’s no denying it, today’s consumers have evolved into retail experts. Having taken full advantage of all the technology available to them, today’s shoppers have a tremendous personal knowledge and infinite access to more, at their fingertips like never before. From online search engines, wiki product information, google pictures, google ads, comparative websites, customer review and recommendation channels, access to smart-phone bar-code scanners, you name it, they have it, and they use it.

We live in an over-stimulated world that gives us instant access to information about pretty much every product we consume. We expect everything NOW and that makes us as consumers, vastly impatient. The inherent irony of course is that while we have access to all this, we’re also sick of ‘having to make’ so many decisions in the first place. Consumers wanted choice, and they got it.

Consequently, retailers were taught to cover all their bases, offering more than just their speciality. They became ‘jack of all trades’, while masters of none. And it worked. It fed customers with more and more, and stopped them from leaving to find that ‘more’ somewhere else.

But all that’s changing. For the first time in decades, speciality is leading the way. Take mono food businesses for example, which are thriving. Be it pizzas, burgers, fishmongers, even grains; mono food concepts are making their way to the top, often starting out as pop-up food vans before turning into bricks and mortar stores. These small businesses are thriving in a complicated world where consumers fed up with being surrounded by too much choice.

It’s simple.

If we like how you look, if we understand ‘clearly’ what you do, if you’re nice and you smile and can do ‘your one thing’ very very well. Then you win. We will be attracted to you. We will spend with you. And most likely we’ll return to you again and again.


  1. Think about what you do best and how you can do it better?
  2. Are there ways you can specialise in providing a product or service that focuses on specific client group’s needs, which cannot or are not addressed in such detail by mainstream providers.
  3. What do you offer that others on the high street don’t? Don’t forget excellent customer service is definitely one of these.

A list of all our previous trends is below:

  1. Dealing with ‘Vigilante Consumers’: Retail Trends
  2. Traceability is King: Retail Trends
  3. Quality at a good price: Retail Trends

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