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A Look Ahead at 2018

Our product discovery team has already been hard at work finding innovative, Grommet-worthy products to share with you in 2018. We sat down with our product experts to get the scoop on the types of products you’ll be seeing this year.

Meredith

Smart Kitchen is here to stay, and we are seeing more and more companies come up with new ways of perfecting the way we cook, bake, grill etc. by infusing everyday activities with technology that makes our lives easier. With that being said the most successful smart kitchen products have to solve a common problem in a different and more effective way and be an affordable price.

The health benefits and the ease of home preparation of fermented foods will continue to be a big trend and we see so many Makers coming out with DIY solutions. It’s nice to see a revival of something that has been used by many for centuries make a comeback and continue to grow.

Taking everyday products and reinventing them. We are seeing a resurgence of this within home and housewares. When you can take something that already exists and re-design it to make it better and solve a widespread consumer problem, it's powerful.

Ryan

The technology category continues to redefine itself as electronics spread to all product categories and give more focus to niche categories. Finding ways for technology to infuse itself with everyday tasks and make our lives a little more convenient is going to be our focus.

While the fidget spinner craze came and went quickly this year, we do anticipate continued interest in out-of-the box ready to play toys. I'm expecting 2018 to move away from the learn-to-code STEM toy and focus more heavily on interactive toys that seamlessly mesh the digital and physical worlds. Mixed realities (Augmented and Virtual) will likely see deeper development.

We are expecting a number of shifts in the hardware and tool space for 2018. Naturally, this lends itself to connected products enhancing our ability to build, tinker, and improve our homes. We also anticipate re-designs of familiar tools that will continue to shrink, become stronger, and more efficient than those prior.

Zach

2017 was the year of voice assistants. Apple, Google, Amazon, and Samsung want you to control products with your voice. Alexa definitely got a head start in the market this year, but more and more smart devices are built with multiple systems in mind. Voice control is going to get more and more pervasive in 2018 now that Google has stepped up their game with a broader offering of devices. Wifi connected outlets have become incredibly affordable, I expect we're going to see even more products that help automate your home and life.

2017 was the year of the headphone dongle as more companies followed in Apple's steps from the iPhone 7 and removed the 3.5mm jack. 2018 will be the year of wireless power. Many Android phones have supported wireless charging for a while, but now that Apple has rolled out support of the Qi wireless charging standard, expect to see all kinds of products that now support wireless power. Expect to see "area wireless charging" that doesn't require specific alignment or physical contact in the next 2 years.

Outdoor equipment companies have become more politically active and environmentally conscious than ever–from garments made with recycled wool, cashmere, feathers, and other materials, to rain jackets that are dye free and made from plastic bottles. Sustainability is going to be more and more prevalent in the industry, and how a product was made is increasingly important.

One more… fanny packs. No joke, they're starting to make a comeback in pop culture, and the outdoor community is going to embrace them again in a big way.

 

Ayana

We’re still seeing constant improvements to travel pillows. With so much variety, 2018 travel pillows will cover comfort, price value, and easy in functionality and storage. I will also be focused on finding a luggage of high quality with added benefits.

Consumers are increasingly conscious about the ingredients in there personal care products. Consumers are looking for 100% all natural ingredients that work just as well as their go-to everyday products. Charcoal,  Magnesium, and CBD are ingredients that are currently trending and will see continued growth in 2018

 

Marcia

As Ayana mentioned, natural skin care as well as products using coffee grounds are trending. Eyebrow and eyelash enhancing products are popping up as well. Honey as a category continues to be strong with new innovative infused and regional flavors becoming important.

Well-priced, multi-use home decor and tabletop products are a important for 2018. Some themes you’ll see include unique shaped candles, coastal themes, and personalization.
Some of our most popular products in 2017 were luxury items. With that feedback in mind, I’ll be on the lookout for more high-end products.

 

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