Hello and welcome to January: In Review

2017 Highlights | November | October

Take a brief break from your January returns processing and holiday season analysis to recap on the top five retail news stories, articles and industry reports that hit the web this month.

1. Key Dates: The 2018 Retail Calendar

Usually the retail calendar doesn’t change much year-on-year. But this year, some major trade shows have changed their dates quite a bit to bring them forward by a few weeks, and in some cases, a few months.

From key shopping dates, to popular trade shows and events, this calendar has all of the key dates you need to know for the year ahead.

Take a look at the calendar now to be on top of your 2018 planning. (Here’s a sneak peek of the first 6 months):

2. Predictions: 5 Resolutions for Achieving Omnichannel Excellence in 2018 and The Five Retail Trends That Almost Certainly, Probably Won’t Happen in 2018

Our CEO, Derek O’Carroll, has been busy this month offering his advice on what themes are going to be big news in 2018, as well as the retail trends that probably won’t happen this year.

Up first, TotalRetail shares Derek’s take on what retailers need to know in order to truly excel at omnichannel in 2018. Among his top takeaways are the idea that becoming omnichannel savvy results in a better customer experience and a rise in sales made via social media. Read more now!

Up next on Derek’s agenda for this month was an original piece on which retail trends probably won’t become big news in 2018. Take a look at his anti-predictions piece now and let us know your own anti-predictions in the comments below! 

3. Retail Insights: Festive Retail Data Reveals Where Automation is Needed

The peak holiday season is over and the skyrocketing returns have almost come to an end, which can only mean one thing. It’s time to reflect on what went well during the festive season, as well as how you can make improvements for the next holiday season and each of the peak trading days in between.

We’ve done some of the hard work for you by analyzing industry data to find out which shopping days were the most popular, which industries saw peaks at certain times of the year and where automation is needed to combat these peaks and troughs.

Check out the findings to see if they’re what you expected. 

4. News: Facebook’s Major Change to the Newsfeed

One of the biggest news reports of this month has been Facebook’s decision to change the newsfeed.

As a way of “helping people stay connected and bring us closer together”, Facebook has made the decision to remove most publisher updates from the newsfeed, so that users can focus on what their friends and family are sharing instead.

Many publications are spelling this out as a disaster for businesses that rely heavily on Facebook. But we need to remember that Facebook are not removing publisher updates from the newsfeed entirely.

Posts that encourage genuine engagement and video posts will still be shown prominently in the newsfeed, which instead spells out a need for marketers to change how they use Facebook.

So if Facebook is an important part of your revenue, then your marketing focus in Q1 this year should be on researching how you can improve your Facebook engagement and utilize more video in the face of this big change.

5. Partner Spotlight: The 19 Ecommerce Trends + 147 Online Shopping Stats Fueling Sales Growth in 2018

A new feature of the In Review series for 2018 will be a special partner spotlight section, in which we will call out exceptional and useful content that our partners have been producing each month.

To kick things off, BigCommerce have recently created this detailed report on the shopping habits, behavior and preferences of thousands of US shoppers so you know what you should focus your efforts on this year. Take a look and let us know what you think!

That’s it for this month. If you find these review blogs useful, don’t forget to subscribe to get them delivered straight to your inbox.