Fashion Retailers and Market Solutions- with COVID-19
Most of us were lucky enough to call the COVID-19 pandemic as the most miserable disaster of our lives.
We believed for years that global disasters like drought, contagious illnesses and world wars won’t happen again, I mean globally! Although they are domestic wars, regional drought years and eve Malaria which unfortunately kills hundreds of thousands each year, but a pandemic? It was out of our minds specially here in the North America.
Not only mental health of people was affected during past months, but also economical basics were challenged. Unpaid rents for shops, expired seasonal products and decaying savings are normal now.
Despite all uncertainties, it is possible to have an estimation of social behaviour in near future, by studying markets and businesses in the past crisis. Fashion industry, is the main discussion in this article, and we try to provide some practical solutions, are presented.
This study will help us find out our own practical solutions for surviving/moving our businesses forward.
Changes in lifestyle and mental behaviour of our target market, will result in pre-determined changes in their buying manners and definitely need new marketing actions as well.
Unemployment in fashion industry: Not only many of customers will lose their jobs, but also many of manufacturers, retailers and service areas in fashion industry will face hard situation. So, the production will be limited even quality and quantity. Professional Labour forces will migrate to other industries, which will have long term effects, some of it is unknown!
To control and prevent side effect this it is suggested to add new sources while keeping your current sources.
Decrease in annual household income: additional to unemployment, most of part-time jobs or second jobs will be lost, which affects many of families, results in total decrease in household income, directly cuts elder buyers and impulsive buyers for months after pandemic ends.
Although it is anticipated that elder people will be back on track sooner, so markets that targets them will find their way back let’s say in a few months. Products that attract them or their special needs are predicted to find large scale sales.
As impulsive buying was long forgotten during the pandemic, it takes time for people to return to their old habit of buying for joy. It affects gift shops sales dramatically.
Considering this shift in the age of sooner_retuning_buyers, is the way for gift shops more classic and nostalgic items will go hot!
Fewer events: There are many of cancelled events, which their shut down affected artisans and artists, especially in handmade goods. They lost their opportunity for direct sale. It is anticipated that creative ideas in these fields will experience a loss.
That push the competition to online and online marketplaces.
It makes an ideal opportunity for fashion shops to find new source of to have new items in their shop.
Less family and friends’ gatherings: Social distancing caused complete cut in unnecessary gatherings between friends and families. When there is no chance to wear a fashionable dress in an opening ceremony, or wear your sparkling jewellery in parties and restaurants, also there is a limited budget to spend on them as a result of economic problems, so people will tend to more simple, meaningful and colourful fashion, which satisfies ones own feelings. So this type of fashion and jewellery will gain higher market.
Change in shopping profile: Loss in income and feeling the need to save more for emergency costs, increases the need for buying lower prices. On the other hand, customers buy when they have an attractive sale price.
The price will play more major role in buying than before. Then more middle and lower price range stores will enter the competition to offer lower prices.
This pattern will transfer to wholesalers and manufacturers. They will face more delayed payment, more risk, and leads to increased financial problems.
Again multiplying sources can make a balance and may reduce pressure from shop.
Customer services: it is suggested to focus on your loyal customers, try to do not fall in price competition by keep an eye on quality products, increase varieties of your products and suppliers and add simpler and classic products in line.
Carrying a full range of products, attract customer’s total buying capacity, make a remarkable increase in your sales. Adding some accessory and jewellery to cloth shops will be a good solution.
High end and luxury products: These markets of well-established brands will be the first ones to come back to normal, and they will experience less affect than others.
Same time, new Luxury brands may have harder time.
Change in seasonal products selling program: It is believed that people will tend to buy on the time of need, not prior to it as before, for example swimming suits will started to sell much later this year. This would cause a huge effect on production and logistics for huge chains.
Increase in separations and problematic family relations: It is happening now. Separations cause financial instabilities, that will affect most markets, despite beauty salons, Laser skincare centres, and spas which will find more clients.