7 Trending Products to Sell in 2021
After the hardships of the last year, there’s a lot of hope for what 2021 can bring. With any luck, a vaccine will have the world back on track, and pre-pandemic life will be able to resume before the close of 2021.
But whatever sense of normalcy will return, many aspects of our lives have been and will continue to be influenced by COVID-19. This includes the way we shop and the products we choose to purchase.
To help get a kickstart on the upcoming year, we’ve compiled a list of trending products and product categories that are bound to be big in 2021. Informed by data, social listening, and societal trends, we hope that you, as business owners, will be able to identify opportunities for your retail store and make 2021 the best selling year to date.
Let’s jump right in and discover what will be top-of-mind for consumers in the coming year.
1. Workout equipment and apparel
If there’s one trend guaranteed year after year, it’s the peak of home workout and exercise searches in January. Yes, it might seem cliché, but fitness and weightloss-related New Year’s resolutions are ever-popular.
2020 saw home workout searches reaching unprecedented levels in March due to lockdowns. But interestingly, even when things settled, home workouts were still being searched for at much higher levels than before, and it looks like it will continue well into 2021.
With all of this in mind, it’s safe to assume that any fitness-related products are great items to sell. And this isn’t just a niche that sports retailers can benefit from. The fitness niche covers many areas, and you can get creative to take advantage of this upward trend.
If you are a retail store owner in the fitness and sports niche, this trend fits you perfectly. Items like yoga mats, dumbbells, bicycles, and resistance bands are all perfect for making the most of customers interested in working out at home or doing outdoor sports in general.
There’s plenty of opportunity to stock everything from caps to performance socks for those with an apparel retail store. And products like yoga mat bags, water bottles, and deodorant provide the chance for stores in other niches to get on board too.
2. Candles and home decor
There’s no doubt we’ll still be spending a lot of time at home in 2021. And with all those hours spent staring at the same four walls, the urge to create a calm and cozy space has never been stronger.
For retailers in the home decor and accessories niche, this presents an opportunity to offer products and bundles designed to help customers make their house feel more like home. Items such as scented candles, artwork, lamps, and soft furnishings all achieve this beautifully. Positioning these items as simple ways to improve the mood is a great way to entice customers.
Thinking bigger, retail stores that stock products like furniture, appliances, curtains, and wallpaper should also seize on this home improvement trend. With many people not spending on things like expensive trips, big-ticket items for the home have taken priority.
Meanwhile, with more and more workplaces making a permanent shift to remote working, items that make home offices more comfortable and efficient will be in hot demand. Desk organizers, ergonomic chairs, planners, and even coffee mugs are all items retailers should consider stocking as people bounce into 2021 full of motivation.
3. Fun and functional masks
Even with COVID-19 vaccines, it seems incredibly unlikely that the concept of wearing a mask will disappear any time soon. Mask wearing was already popular in countries like Japan and China long before coronavirus, and now more and more western countries are on board with the concept.
With face masks more normalized than ever before, it makes them an excellent product for retail stores to stock in 2021. Masks are small, relatively inexpensive, and have become a new type of impulse purchase for shoppers.
Aside from having health benefits, fabric masks are endlessly customizable, making them appropriate for most retail stores and attractive to customers from all walks of life.
4. Stationery and art supplies
Starting a new hobby is a typical New Year’s resolution, and in 2021, many people will be looking to pick up a new skill or way to pass the time–especially if they can do it at home.
Arts and crafts-based hobbies have been on the rise throughout 2020 and will continue to be popular in 2021. Products in this category include things from paints, canvases, and clay to yarn, sewing machines, and needles.
For the most part, art and craft supplies are small and affordable, and they appeal to people of all ages and abilities. This is an excellent opportunity for retail store owners to create bundles of products that contain everything a budding artist or crafter needs to get started.
Letter writing and journal keeping have also had a resurgence recently. Writing letters has been a simple yet personal way to stay connected with friends and family. Meanwhile, journaling has become a method of organizing thoughts and documenting day-to-day life during an unprecedented period.
Writing stationery, notebooks, stickers, and journals will fly off shelves in 2021. These items are often heavily purchased at the start of the year, but don’t underestimate their popularity in the months beyond that, especially with a little creative marketing.
5. Healthy and delicious snacks
2020 may have been the year of banana bread and sourdough, but as we move into 2021, it’s all about eating healthy and consciously.
Research shows that consumers are more interested in snacks tailored to their health than ever before. Sustainable snacking is also top of mind, with around 30 percent of shoppers consciously choosing to spend their money on sustainably produced snacks.
For retail stores, 2021 will be a great time to discover suppliers making new and exciting foods that customers will be interested in trying. Options like edible fruit tea blends, keto bars, and vegan condiments are all twists on classics and are sure to catch shoppers’ eyes.
Sustainably produced drinks are also trending, with coffee being one example. Roasteries – particularly smaller, local operations – have become increasingly transparent about their supply chains, with many only sourcing from farms paying a living wages and providing fair working conditions. Sourcing your products from suppliers open about their product’s origins, in turn, works in your favor as you can leverage this to sell to your customers.
6. Pet accessories
With lifestyles changing drastically in 2020, many people took the chance to adopt a pet. Across the world, shelters, breeders, and pet stores have seen animals – primarily cats and dogs – joining their forever homes at a staggering rate.
And naturally, the rise in adoption rates has driven massive growth in the pet products industry – it’s projected that Americans will have spent $99 billion on pets in 2020. And, given that these newly adopted pets will be around for years to come, the pet industry will only continue to grow. This provides a fantastic opportunity for retail store owners to capitalize on all these doting new pet owners.
Depending on your retail store, there are the obvious pet product wins like harnesses, leads, and bowls, but there are also plenty more. Pet ownership often becomes a facet of their owner’s personalities, so pet-related doormats, coasters, and key chains are examples of other options for products retail stores could stock. And, for the most attentive pet owner, look no further than offering items like dog bows, pajamas, or a stylish bandana.
7. Locally made products
If there’s one good thing to come out of 2020 for retailers, it’s the growing push to buy from local brands and stores. More than ever before, consumers are turning their back on big chains in favor of supporting stores from their local community.
In 2021 this drive is set to continue as consumers see how their locally-spent money actively contributes to their towns and cities in a way that buying from big corporations does not.
This trend isn’t something that comes down to any particular products for retailers, but it is something to consider when sourcing and marketing products to sell in a retail store. Sourcing products made by suppliers within a particular state or city is an excellent way to help local businesses and reap the benefits of stocking those locally made products.
Wholesale sourcing platforms such as Handshake make it easy to find suppliers nearby with filtering tools that allow you to search suppliers from specific US states. From there, retail store owners can build strong relationships that are mutually beneficial for both parties. Now that’s a win-win!
To discover more trending products from unique suppliers, join Handshake today.