Podcast: COVID-19 & The Acceleration Of Retail’s Hottest Trends

  • July 15, 2020 at 10:53 AM EDT
  • By Marisa Jentz
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Historically, the retail industry has felt the aftershock of economic and social events. Over the course of her career, Barbara Kahn, Patty and Jay H. Baker Professor of Marketing for the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, has kept a close watch on these developments and the trends that emerge as a result. In recent weeks, she has assessed COVID-19’s impact on the industry in comparison to two monumental events: the Great Recession of 2008 and the latest Retail Apocalypse. 

“I do think that COVID has accelerated the customer’s expectation on efficiency of purchasing,” Barbara explained in this week’s episode of Retail Remix

We’ve only just begun to scratch the surface of COVID-19’s impact on the industry, but one thing is clear: the pandemic has accelerated a ton of trends with no sign of slowing down in sight. While BOPIS, contactless payment and curbside pick-up were already picking up steam before the pandemic, these strategies have been thrust into the spotlight, and retailers that don’t buy in will pay the price. 

Check out the full episode to hear Barbara and host Alicia Esposito dig into: 

  • The acceleration of disruption; 
  • The tension among department store retailers; 
  • The future of luxury; and 
  • The accelerated adoption of sustainability strategies. 



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