Australian retailers need to be aware of consumer trends and attitudes in order to capitalise on a predicted ‘champagne year’ due to tax cuts, low unemployment and a hold on interest rates, according to Bernie Brookes, CEO, Myer, and Mark McCrindle, director, McCrindle Research, who will present at the National Retail Forum.

“Long term, strong financial management by the current government has again provided a tremendous foundation for successful retailers to become even more so,” says Brookes.

“Low interest rates and a low unemployment level have helped consumer confidence, and the associated benefit is retailer confidence. Such an environment will only ever benefit good consumer-led retailers. It does not matter how buoyant the economy is, poor retailers who do not respond to the consumer will not survive.”

Brookes will present ‘Customer strategies – how to win your customers back’, which asserts that reacting to consumer demands is essential for success, especially if retailers want to increase predicted profit margins.

McCrindle, who will present ‘Retail demographics’, advises that the key for retailers is to be aware of demographic shifts and generational differences of the society they are retailing in.

“Baby boomers are working longer than ever and therefore are remaining active as consumers for longer,” says McCrindle.

“While Generation X – today’s parents and householders – are in the most expensive stage or their lives as they provide for children and/or pay mortgages, Generation Y – the 20-somethings – are largely responsible for an expectation inflation where retailers are more empowered with knowledge than ever before, and therefore have higher demands of the retailing industry.”

National Retail Forum will be held concurrent to Retail Expo Australasia.

For more information or pre-registration, visit