2. Mobile experience is key

Consumers are now in the habit of getting whatever they want with a tap. For retailers, if the mobile experience is not intuitive, they can’t compete. Retailers need to take a look at their mobile experience and invest in it in order to give customers the kind of experience they want and expect.

3. No more one-size-fits-all model

Historically, retailers would buy stock and market it in the same way to everyone, but this doesn’t cut it anymore—not every consumer is the same. Different products serve different purposes for different people depending on where they are in life. Messaging and product offerings need to be tailored to what the target consumer wants and where they are in the purchase funnel.

4. Trust is earned

Customers today need to be wooed. They don’t give their trust to brands freely. Millennials in particular like to try before they buy to ensure that the product they’re purchasing will do what’s promised. They are extremely thrifty with purchases and lean heavily on the advice of their peers, leveraging UGC for insight into product quality. Sephora is one business succeeding in giving this demographic what they want, allowing consumers to try products before purchasing.

Retailers should look at subscription services to get their products in front of more potential customers, building trust and increasing brand loyalty in the process.

5. Speed is key

There are some retailers, like Zazzle, who connect local makers and manufacturers around the to their platform. Through this kind of localization, they’re able to offer quick turnaround times for their customers, which is particularly necessary in today’s Amazon-first world. Because of their decentralized production process, they’re also able to react to trends while they’re still relevant, getting their customers what they want, when they want it, faster than most. By focusing on localization, they’re able to scale and be responsive.

It’s not all doom and gloom

The sharing economy is not taking over retail in the same way that Lyft/Uber disrupted the taxi industry. What it has done is shifted what consumers expect. Retailers can’t dictate to their customers anymore, and previously untouchable behemoths have been forced into a position of humility. But hope is not lost. By listening to and evolving with consumers, retail will avoid dying a slow death.