For the retail industry, including the fashion and luxury sector, the last few years have been very challenging, due to economic uncertainty and a lot of change. Nevertheless, now it is time to look forward and embrace the future with confidence.

Some important guidelines on how best to face the near future come from the research 'CUBE: Fashion Takes Shape' presented by Vogue Business and Google, which identifies the four consumer trends that will drive the growth of the sector over the next five years.

Create Character

According to the research, 82% of consumers already feel the need to express themselves through fashion and luxury. This trend demands greater empathy from brands in order to listen to buyers' needs and succeed in satisfying them. To make strong connections, it will be necessary to establish relationships with people that go beyond aesthetics, based on a deep sharing of ethics and values. It will be crucial for brands to outline a recognisable, authentic and credible personality.

Unlock “Ultramatums”

'Ultramatum' means the ultimate call to action to save the planet, coming directly from consumers to brands. This trend sees consumers becoming more and more careful in making sustainable purchases, with respect to the environment but also to animals, society and people. This is confirmed by data from the Vogue Business Index Spring, which shows that 76% of Italian consumers seek information on the social responsibility of the brands they buy. Fashion brands should therefore be able to enter this international debate with concrete actions to demonstrate their commitment to care for the planet.

Build Bridges

73% of consumers describe themselves as indifferent when it comes to choosing which channels to buy on. This means that in a hyper-connected world, the boundaries between physical and online are becoming increasingly blurred and that, over time, people will no longer perceive differences between one medium and another. Increasingly immersed in a hybrid space between real and virtual, consumers will abandon linear purchasing paths to shop fluidly, on the channel that best suits their convenience and availability at the time.

Embracing Extr(a)ordinary

73% of luxury buyers consider the fact that brands are innovative and experiment with out-of-the-ordinary technologies to be a decisive factor in their purchase. This is a thought-provoking statistic that highlights another aspect that fashion and luxury brands should definitely not neglect in their future strategies, namely the ability to embrace a new way of communicating, out of the ordinary, capable of surprising consumers. It will be important to establish more authentic relationships with local communities and creators, to better meet their needs but also to discover new opportunities to innovate. They will be the real trendsetters of the future.