Local ShoppingThe Backroom: Ushering in the new year with Doug Stephens

The Backroom: Ushering in the new year with Doug Stephens


Welcome to The Backroom, a window into what goes on behind the scenes as the Retail Dive team covers the stories and trends reshaping retail. You can check out all our podcast episodes (past and present) here and listen on Apple PodcastsStitcheriHeartRadio and Spotify​​

As vaccines tempered the worst crisis of the pandemic, people got out of the house, refreshed their closets and enthusiastically shopped in brick-and-mortar stores. Retailers had a rough 2022 nevertheless, as household budgets were squeezed by rising prices on essentials, and as the pandemic continued to cause trouble throughout the supply chain.

But the industry’s predicament is not just about inflation. Through their spending behavior this year — and they did continue to spend — consumers made clear that, when prioritizing their discretionary funds, they often value experiences over goods. In this episode, Daphne Howland sits down with industry expert Doug Stephens, as the two have done at year’s end for a while now, to uncover how this matters to retailers, why experiential retail is definitely not about the metaverse, the new era at Amazon and more. Thanks for listening and happy new year.

Resource links:

How retailers are connecting the metaverse to the real world and revenue

Is Amazon done disrupting retail?

‘There’s the right home for any brand’: Why retail keeps turning to Los Angeles

Editor’s note: This show was produced and edited by Caroline Jansen. The Backroom’s former co-host Ben Unglesbee has left the Retail Dive staff. But don’t worry, you can still catch Ben’s reporting at our sibling publication Supply Chain Dive. Daphne will carry on with various co-hosts and guests when The Backroom returns in 2023.



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