Outdoor Industry Association

Outdoor Retail of the Future

Outdoor Retail of the Future

Sign up to receive news and updates

Request an invite to our online community 

Email us your ideas or experiments



- IDEO Presentation at ORSM '13
- Member Worksheet
- IDEO Engagement Guide
- IDEO Rendezvous Brainstorm Questions


Outdoor Retail of the Future is a multi-year initiative to help our members adapt in this rapidly-changing business and consumer environment. Through our research, we are working to provide consumer centric, innovative and scalable business opportunities for our members.

In our work with IDEO, we identified four opportunity areas for connecting with today’s broader market of outdoor consumers that retailers can proactively implement in their day-to-day business.

Social + Connected: Technology is an inherent part of today’s lifestyle and a vital component in how consumers want to participate in and share their outdoor experiences. Recognizing this evolution in behavior, along with the demand for instant gratification, seamless shopping experiences, personalized offerings and convenience, is important in order for retailers to meet evolving customer expectations.
Inclusive: With greater diversity in both demographics and outdoor behaviors among young consumers, the definition of outdoor recreation is changing. The need to embrace a broader range of motivations for engaging in the outdoors is essential in order for our industry to be relevant to its next generation of customers.
Accessible: Living in urban environments with limited leisure time, many of today’s consumers want easy outdoor experiences they can integrate into their daily lives. This is driving the need for brands and retailers to bring outdoor to where consumers are and provide accessible opportunities for them to engage in outdoor experiences that require less effort on their part.
Experiential: Millennials want stories to tell and embrace brands that can be an authentic part of that story. The shift away from transactions and selling to relationships and experiences is forcing businesses to define and tell their brand story, beyond the products they sell, in order to be relevant and authentic to these consumers.

Outdoor's Burning Platform: Global Trends Changing Retail

Click here to view this presentation by Christie Hickman, Vice President of Market and Consumer Insights, at Outdoor Retailer Winter Market ‘14

Innovation Case Studies

Each month will feature a case study highlighting a member business innovating around one of four opportunity areas for connecting with today’s broader market of outdoor consumers:  Be social + connected, be inclusive, be accessible and be experiential.

The New Outdoors

Consumers outside of the core are redefining "outdoors" on their own terms. Listen to their perspective on being "outsidesy" and how they are choosing to engage with the outdoors.

Outsidesy is the new Outdoorsy

To engage consumers all along the intensity spectrum, you must understand the new definition of the outdoors.

Right Outside the Front Door

For these consumers, outdoors starts on city streets, happens every day and includes everyone.

Back to the Basics

The new outdoors is about communing with nature in simple ways and participating in the process.

Not Too Different from Real Life

Creature comforts make the outdoors more enjoyable, gearing up is a burden, and challenging yourself is doing just a bit more than you already know.

A Beautiful Backdrop

The outdoors is a catalyst for building relationships and bonding with family and friends.

Fun For Everyone

Being outdoors is about enjoyment and expressing yourself in whatever way you are comfortable.



Team up with the OIA community and start enjoying the benefits of membership. Provide your staff with the tools to run your business more efficiently and effectively.