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Doing business in fashion means making choices every day. All these small, large, or drastic choices are influenced by important issues such as inflation, war, a pandemic, economic instability, and the labour market. That’s why making smart choices is more important than ever. The question arises: how to do that? Orientate and inform yourself at the fashion trade event and focus on things you cán control, is the first and most important tip from trade association EK-Retail (formerly Euretco). Stock management, making sustainable investments, sharpening the assortment, higher margins, better conversion; there are still plenty of opportunities to influence the health of the store yourself.
And ask yourself if you still want to go along with the discount culture. The customer always experiences a discount, sometimes subtle and often screaming. In fashion retail, the price is also central to communication. Fashion chains and chain stores are now also betting en masse on Black Friday, while many parts of the winter collections have not even gotten their sales opportunity yet. According to EK Retail, the agitation that retailers experience when their winter collection has not yet been sold is unjustified. The real cold hasn't started yet, and the Winter '22 season is far from over.
For the Dutch market, Black Friday is inconvenient in that respect, because that marketing tool mostly turns into a concealed sale start. Now that the stocks are a bit higher, that is quite tempting. Then you're off. Once the discount is in the air for the customer, it is difficult for a retailer to escape that requirement. There is another option.
If necessary and as far as possible, use the discounts during this period mainly to get rid of old stock and to give a boost to the early deliveries of this season. And continue with the normal actions in this month. A big sale does not have to apply to all items too early. The store would become less exciting and inspiring for the customer and there is a danger that the consumer prefers to wait a while to shop winter items in the future.
It's all about targeted control of stock in resale and margin. Where do you want to be at the end of this season? Which product groups or suppliers are lagging behind and for which product categories the sales moment can be a bit later in the season? That's a question for you.
Modefabriek 22+23 January 2023: get your ticket here..
Written by Marjolein Stormezand in collaboration with EK Retail