Direct-to-consumer (DTC) selling isn’t easy. It requires a lot of hard work in the marketing and messaging department and an uncompromising customer focus. Without the convenience of traditional distribution channels, DTC brands have to start from scratch. However, DTC continues to be a popular business model for new retail startups because it offers a number of unique advantages:
You can learn a lot by studying the businesses that break the mold of traditional retail. Although your own brand might not be one of the “retail unicorns” that have grown into billion-dollar businesses, you can still borrow a thing or two from the businesses that faced an uphill battle—and won.
Despite dramatic transformations in retail strategy over the past few years, most retailers are still playing catch-up to meet customer expectations.
Trader Joe’s isn’t your typical grocery store. Instead of offering a broad selection of items in a huge space, TJ’s curates its products carefully and makes them easy to find by keeping the store’s footprint small. And although many of the products are fairly standard, they’re presented in unique, branded packaging, and many products achieve cult status among customers.
The retail world is changing fast, and it won’t slow down anytime soon. New technologies and shopping habits are challenging brands of all sizes to keep up with new customer expectations. The good news is that retail is still the place to be. In May 2019, U.S. retailers generated 3.1 percent year-over-year sales growth.