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2020 Retail Trends for the Upcoming Holiday Season

Every year, retailers prepare for the upcoming holiday season by adjusting their strategy and promotions to appeal to consumers more than they did the last time. However, it’ll be a bit more than switching up deals in 2020.

This holiday season is going to look different from many angles, so what can you do to make sure you’re ahead of the competition?

Our team of experts did their research to compile the top 2020 retail trends to prepare you for the holidays this year. Read on to learn more!

1. Personal Connection with Customers

Connection > Everything

We've all experienced a heck of a year, so this holiday season, consumers will be looking extra hard for that personal connection. They want to feel seen and understood. 

So, as a retailer, what can you offer to consumers that really speaks to them? 

CFH: Cook From Home Trend

More people are cooking at home than ever. Bakeware sets, utensils, pots and pans, kitchen towels, and food-related decor may be a highlight for the holidays this year. Air fryers are all the craze, too!

Indoor Health and Fitness

Not only are people spending more time in their kitchens, but they likely developed an at-home workout routine when they had to (or still have to) avoid the gym. With temperatures dropping, workout equipment sales will likely rise, too — as this year has been the best motivator for putting together an indoor workout room.

Home Office

Most commonly, more people have been working from home. Consumers will realize it’s time to upgrade their work desk, office chair, monitor, keyboard, printer, and anything else they’ve been using 40 hours a week. You don’t realize something needs updated unless you’re utilizing it every day!


No matter what it is, get creative here. We know that liquor sales have spiked throughout quarantine. We can also assume, based on low stock at our favorite stores, that more at-home activities like board games and outdoor sport kits have been a huge hit. And with more home renovation projects taking place when people finally had the time, hardware stores can really hit it hard for the holidays.

Overall, whether someone is back to work or not, more people have recognized the value of being at home and spending time with their loved ones. Use this knowledge to connect with customers this 2020 holiday season.


2. Improved In-Store Interaction

The next 2020 retail trend is top-notch storefront interaction.

With more value in staying at home, you know that people will be taking the easy route when it comes to shopping. Why stop in a store when gift shopping is just a click away? 

Make a visit to your storefront worthwhile. What can consumers have access to in-store only? Special discounts? Exclusive items not found online?

Most importantly, you want to make a visit to your storefront count. Now is not the time for subpar customer service. 

Train up your team to ensure they’re welcoming and know exactly how to navigate the store. Employees should greet everyone who comes in, share a few specials, ask if the customer needs help finding anything, and tell them their name. It’s simple, but it makes a huge difference.

Remember, 64% of people miss going to physical stores while 65% are already comfortable or will be shopping in malls by mid-October.

There’s still a group of people who will always want to shop in stores rather than online, so help them feel like they’ve made the right choice in doing so.

3. Online Shopping Will Win

Just as there’s a select group of people who will always shop in-store, there’s another group of people who will never bounce back from online shopping — especially after the year we’ve all had.

Since you know several people will shop online, don't let digital marketing efforts slip. Focus on social media more than ever by sharing specials through organic posts.

You can even sync your online shop up to social media accounts, allowing visitors to make purchases from your storefront via these apps. Facebook takes the lead in this category, with the most storefront purchases being made via their platform.

Digital marketing isn’t limited to social media, however. Last year, there was a 134% increase in SMS (Short Message Service, better known as text) sends during cyber week and a 14% increase in email sends on Thanksgiving day. 

The 2020 holiday season is the time to experiment with text messaging and emails! If you haven’t used them, you could be falling behind. Small businesses have picked up on this trend, too, knowing the value of online sales.

Some of the more powerful POS solutions can actually help you manage and execute marketing tasks. (Ours is one of them!) Schedule a live demo to get a closer look.

Pro Tip: Get your texts, emails, and social media posts written and aligned as soon as possible. Creating a calendar and writing content in advance will help you stay on track. In most cases, you can even schedule content to go out on a specific date and time, meaning you don’t have to worry about missing a message.

4. An Extended Holiday Season

The last 2020 retail trend has to do with the timeline.

The most notable prediction is that, due to the high volume of online shoppers, the holiday season will begin sooner than ever before. 

That's right — that means that your customers are already shopping. And they could continue shopping after the traditional holiday season has ended.

2020 literally threw the concept of time out the window. Whether it’s early or late, people are way more understanding about timelines.

Plus, when you consider how many family gatherings may not be able to happen, there’s no telling when people will be getting together and exchanging gifts this year.

For others, money is tight, so gift buying could be more of a challenge that results in lower spend per transaction.

Overall, it’s good to keep in mind that everyone’s situation is different this year, so be flexible on the dates and times you have mapped out.

2020 Retail Trends for Your Small Business

We know that preparing for the holiday season may be overwhelming this year, and that’s why we put together The Retailers’ Guide to Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and the 2020 Holiday Season.

Download this free resource for tips on managing your storefront, employees, promotions, and more! You don’t want to miss out on this POS Nation exclusive.

Our years of point of sale experience in the retail industry allows us to research and deliver helpful content to keep you going. If you have any questions about the guide or what we do, reach out to our team at info@posnation.com.


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