What business trends will we adopt in 2023?
Businesses in every industry have gone through immense challenges and transformations during the past few years, adapting to sudden changes to stay relevant and not fall behind.
However, as the effects of the pandemic seem to calm down, other threats will continue to arise in 2023, including a possible recession and the cost of living crisis.
For this reason, it is vitally important to consider the trends that will surface and solidify this year and, with this knowledge, implement new strategies to not only survive but also grow and succeed.
Within this article, we will be looking at three main business trends: 1) sustainability and ESG investments 2) customer experience (CX) and omnipresent marketing and 3) technological advancements such as augmented reality and the multiverse.
Let’s get started!
Here Are the 3 Business Trends to Look Out For This Year
Business Trend #1: The Continued Rise of Sustainability
In the past few years, sustainability has gone from a simple buzzword to a global priority. The incorporation of sustainable practices within businesses has been so widely adopted that it’s now seen as an innovative blueprint for future growth and success. In fact, last year, the green technology and sustainability market was worth $46.5 billion and is expected to reach around $417 billion by 2030.
Sustainability has been trending for a while now, but why has there been so much attention on this topic lately?
Why Is Sustainability a Growing Business Trend?
Since the pandemic, sustainability and sustainable practices have been soaring due to the increased events and awareness associated with the climate crisis and social inequalities. This has consequently sparked a greater implementation of green and ethical strategies that will surely continue to grow in 2023.
For instance, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have become more widespread. These are 17 global goals created by the United Nations that, as mentioned on their website, have a “shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future”. This universal framework has been gradually implemented by countries, businesses and even individuals to help make the world a better place.
From a solely business perspective, this environmental and social awareness has also led to the growth and incorporation of CSR strategies.
Corporate Social Responsibility is a self-regulating business model that aims to take social factors into account instead of ignoring them and contributing negatively to the issue. Therefore, companies are forced to be socially accountable for themselves, their stakeholders and societies all over the world. By including CSR in their plans, companies can not only have a positive social and environmental impact but can even improve their offering. In fact, these actions can set a business apart from its competitors and have a better chance of getting financial investment as well as improve brand image, customer loyalty and employee acquisition and retention.
However, there’s something else that has been recently pushing this business trend, and that is ESG investments.
ESG investment is a sustainable form of investing that prioritises environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors over anything else. It considers issues such as climate change, waste, human rights, working conditions and board diversity.
There’s been a growing consensus that these three factors can positively impact a company’s financial performance. Thus, for investors it’s crucial to know whether a business is focusing on the environment and human well-being as well as its economic growth. By analysing companies through these lenses, interested investors can identify opportunities and avoid risks, making more informed financial decisions.
As in previous years, ESG investing will continue to grow in 2023, and according to Bloomberg, its global assets will reach $50 trillion by 2025. It’s no surprise since thousands of investment firms are signing up to the United Nations PRI (Principles of Responsible Investing) and pledging to ESG investment.
As the sustainability market keeps growing so are responsible investments (and vice versa). Overall, this year we will keep seeing an even greater adoption of sustainable practices and the advancement of innovative solutions that are in tune with the Sustainable Development Goals.
Business Trend #2: Improving Customer Experiences
Positive customer experiences should mean everything to a business. It can lead to customer loyalty, increased lifetime value, multiple purchases and greater customer acquisition through word-of-mouth recommendations.
But achieving this is not as easy as it seems. Today’s shoppers are more demanding than ever and expect the near-impossible from you. They want to feel valued and understood and will require your undivided attention 24 hours a day. Thankfully, as technological advancements grow, so do the tools that can help improve customer experiences. For this reason, this trend will be extremely evident and popular in 2023.
Expecting a Customised CX
First of all, in 2023, shoppers will want to have a more personalised experience with brands. This means that at every touchpoint the customer will have with a company, they’ll expect a personalised message. It’s not enough for them to get general marketing anymore. Instead, they will want the business to remember them, offer products that are based on their interests and provide services that exceed expectations. Artificial intelligence will play a big part in achieving this, and for that reason, this year we will also see a steady growth in that sector. This business trend will further improve real-time customer service, task automation, website content customisation and the improved learning of customer behaviour.
What we will also see more in 2023 will be the use of omnipresent marketing to create a better customer experience. So, instead of using multi-channel marketing that has the same message across different channels, omnipresent marketing will allow businesses to have a more consumer-centred and personalised approach. This means the latter uses each channel differently and focuses on speaking to the same customer in multiple places, almost as if the company was everywhere they went. This marketing strategy is meant to create a more in depth experience for the customer and build a stronger relationship between the two parties. Due to these reasons (and to satisfy customer wants), we will see greater usage of the omnichannel tactic in 2023.
Business Trend #3: Technological Advancements
AI, AR and VR
I touched on the importance of AI as a means to develop and improve customer experiences. Yet, this is not the only technological advancement we will see this year.
Today AR and VR have already surpassed the gaming sector and have been adopted by various industries such as healthcare, e-commerce and real estate.
However, industries are not the only ones taking advantage of this technology. Due to the increased availability of wearable devices, consumers are also moulding the success of this trend. Statista forecasts that by next year, around 1.7 billion people will be using AR devices. What’s more is that the augmented technology market is supposed to reach over $140 billion this year, which is an incredible amount considering five years ago (in 2018) the AR and VR market was only worth $13.4 billion.
The advancement of this technology will bring many opportunities for businesses and marketers looking to be one step ahead of the competition. It will become more mainstream for customers to try on clothes and accessories wherever they are and even view how a piece of furniture might look in their home. Almost anything is possible when it comes to augmented reality; it’s just a matter of time! So, this year we will say goodbye to simple filters and observe how companies will use augmented reality to improve their offering and stand out amongst their competitors.
Another technological trend we will hear a lot in 2023 is the metaverse. For those who aren’t aware, the metaverse is a virtual universe where users can interact with other people and objects in real time. To achieve this, it uses a combination of AR, VR and NFTs.
Recently, the metaverse has become increasingly connected to the physical world. Virtual events are starting to be held in physical locations, and with the case of real estate, some businesses are even using this technology to show properties virtually using VR. This pioneering high-tech will surely see more usage in the following year.
From a fully digital and virtual perspective, businesses will use the metaverse as an office space to meet with clients and work with team members. This will reduce costs such as transportation and renting whilst allowing individuals to interact with each other.
We will also see greater adoption of companies using the metaverse for marketing. They will use this technology to get to know their potential and existing customers better so as to create more targeted marketing strategies and virtual experiences. For instance, Nike created Nikeland, one of the first metaverses for e-commerce purposes. In it, users can take part in sporting competitions and mini-games, join digital events, try on digital clothes and even buy in-game fashion pieces. It’s the perfect combination of fashion and sports in a futuristic setting. With this in mind, other brands across all sectors will likely jump on this trend to captivate their audience and create a memorable experience.
It’s safe to say that the metaverse market will continue to grow in 2023, especially considering that two years ago this sector was worth $22.79 billion and is now predicted to reach $996.42 billion by 2030.
Adapt to This Year’s Business Trends
Due to the economic challenges that will arise this year, it’s crucial to quickly respond strategically to emerging business trends. Companies will have to be fully adaptable in order to survive and fight off any possible threat.
We’ve discussed three main trends that will influence the business landscape in 2023. Firstly, sustainability will have an immense impact on the present business model. Through the SDGs, CSR and ESG investments, we will continue to see a growth of sustainable practices in all sectors. This year there will also be a rise in the development of CX to improve customer acquisition and retention with the help of omnipresent marketing and AI. Finally, to stand out from the competition and remain relevant, businesses will employ advanced technology like augmented reality to enhance their marketing strategies.
Overall, the market growth of these three business trends will open up new opportunities for companies which, if implemented strategically, will help them stay one step ahead of their competitors in 2023.