As we wave goodbye to the summer holidays, lament that our next bank holiday isn’t until December and mummerings about Peak Season become harder to ignore.. It can mean only one thing….Event season is almost upon us.
As we get back into the post-summer activity we can start to look forward to the new ideas and insights that come with the event season. It’s at this time of year that the UK retail industry comes together to debate the most pressing topics at the front of everyone’s mind wherever you work across the value chain. Not only is it a great opportunity to hear from the brightest minds in tech, eCommerce and CX… it’s also the perfect chance to network with peers and forge new relationships.
This year we’re looking forward to Retail Week Tech (Wed 12th - Thrs 13th September), Internet Retailing Conference (Thrs 11th October) and IGD’s Digital Commerce (Tues 16th - Wed 17th October). Each event offers a unique insight into the issues at the forefront of the UK retail industry and we love hearing from such a diverse range of companies.
Here’s our shortlist of the top 5 things we’re most looking forward to!
#1 Leader of the Pack
Retail Week Tech: 9:55am Day 2
Digital Leaders Power List: Who’s on the list?
Following the publication of Retail Week’s Digital Leaders Power List, who are the most influential retailers in the UK right now? It’s always fascinating to see new disruptors face off against establish behemoths and in the battle for customer loyalty, hard to call who will come out on top, but it should make for a lively debate!
#2 Under the Microscope: Dropshipping
Retail Week Tech: 14:20 Day 1
Drop Kicking Drop Shipping Myths
We know better than most that dropshipping (and marketplace) remain shrouded in mystery and fake news. Our blog on the difference between dropshipping and marketplaces is one of our top read items. We’re looking forward to hearing from Chris Haighton of Shop Direct on why they use this model to scale their operations, offering greater choice to their customers and a better customer experience. As José Neves, CEO of Farfetch was recently quoted as saying the leading player to emerge in the retail landscape would undoubtedly be a platform, retailers need to be open to moving away from traditional distribution models in order to scale.
#3 The Future Now
Internet Retailing Conference: 17:00 Day 1
How Will Ecommerce Develop By 2021 And What Should Retail Leaders Be Doing Today To Prepare?
With panellists from Facebook, Google, Schuh, Picnic and of course hosted by Ian Jindal of Internet Retailing, this is an ambitious session! What is the future of eCommerce in the UK? From mobile to social media, platforms to omnichannel, how do retailers prepare for the future and what will the landscape look like in 2021?
#4 Manufacturers Rewriting the Rulebook
IGD Digital Commerce: 11:00 Day 1
How should a manufacturer operate to maximise the omnichannel opportunity?
In this session Ghislaine Prins-Evers, Head of Digital Transformation at Heineken will uncover how the global manufacturer has developed its digital capability to meet shoppers’ increasing expectations. It’s not often manufacturers take centre stage at these events to talk about how they are developing stronger relationships with their customers so we’re betting this will be a popular session!
Another good session on this topic is at 2pm covering the direct to consumer opportunity. As more and more manufacturers start selling directly to consumers, these businesses will share best practice on how it can be done. Sue McVie, Managing Director of Oakhouse Foods at Kerry Foods and Steve Millard, Head of Ecommerce and Digital at Arla Foods - will be sharing their journeys and learnings.
#5 Say Hello to your New Store
Internet Retailing Conference: 9:55am Day 1
Rethinking The Role Of The Store To Ensure Profitability In An Increasingly Uncertain Omnichannel Market
In this session David Lloyd, Managing Director, UK & Nordics of Alibaba Group will share how the world’s most successful retailer is thinking about the future of the store. How can retailers remain relevant across channels and provided a joined up experience for customers? Alibaba sit at the heart of the platform movement and it’s always fascinating to hear what’s coming next!
And of course, we love a good afterparty! Please let us know if you’d be interested in having a catch up over a coffee or indeed a cocktail. With marketplace platform companies like Farfetch recently receiving huge valuations, its a topic that is rising to the top of retailer’s agendas and we’d be happy to share with you some of our thoughts on how you can use the marketplace model to offer more to your customers.
If you'd like to chat to us about offering a greater range of products and services, please get in touch!
Written by Laura Hare
UK Marketing Lead, Mirakl