Multiple factors have affected the retail environment, and largely changed the way that consumers shop.

This is according to a new global consumer retail study from Intel and IHL Group that speaks to the changing retail experience while highlighting technologies that can help improve a dynamic retail marketplace.

“The last two years have been challenging for the retail environment,” says Alec Gefrides, vice-president of the Internet of Things Group and general manager of Retail, Banking, Hospitality and Education at Intel, speaking about the study, ‘The New Normal Consumer: Did the Pandemic Change Consumer Behaviour?’.

IHL Group, in partnership with Intel, conducted the study by surveying consumers in 21 of the world’s largest retail economies about their outlook on future spending.

The study found factors contributing to issues for retail: the pandemic, lack of product availability, labour shortages, lines in stores, and lack of return options.

More than 50% of shopping now happens online, a trend likely to continue as shoppers younger than 30, who practice a higher percentage of online shopping, become a bigger part of the market.

“Expectations for retailers are higher than ever,” says Greg Buzek, president of IHL Group. “They must come to grips with the fact that consumer expectations are not going down, but are being pushed up.”