Retailers are facing huge challenges when it comes to ensuring their products are relevant – that’s why need for information at a truly granular level is so important
A huge challenge facing retailers today? Ensuring their product ranges are timely and relevant – and one of the biggest influences on this is trend.
Because this is the bottom line when it comes to trends and fashion: they impact every decision made during a product’s life cycle and these decisions carry serious financial implications. In addition, as trends continuously evolve, their longevity can be hard to predict. On top of this, retailers must strike the right relationship between internal and external research plus take into account their professional instinct on how much to invest. It’s a minefield, and navigating it? Almost impossible.
However, as retail sales continue to grow globally, all merchants are trying to cash in on their slice. In this process, they face three huge challenges:
a) Ensuring their profit margin is high
b) Getting product to market on time (there is nothing worse than realising you’re too late…)
c) Deciding where to place “big bets”.
Enter data – the intelligence helping retailers make the right decisions confidently and with less risk. And, for fashion retail, there is increasingly no better or reliable source of external data than e-commerce platforms of other retailers.
Programs such as WGSN INstock ethically scrape the e-commerce platforms of retailers globally. INstock, not only mines the data, it cleanses and refines it before presenting it to clients in a meaningful way – in a way that can instantly eradicate the stress surrounding these big decisions. And it’s scope is huge, considering data from 124 retailers across six countries (UK, US, Australia, Germany, Spain and India).
So it sounds good, but does INstock actually work? Yes – and we can tell you how via the success of that unlikely hero product, the jumpsuit.
It was a huge hit when it landed in mass retail a few years ago and every time it begins to dip away, this piece comes back stronger, finding real favour with the juniors market both for festival and high summer.
Although we’ve seen a wide range of styles coming through over recent seasons – which include smarter tailored versions for older customers – it’s the junior focused retailers who hold the largest proportion of jumpsuits. Shorter playsuits are the style which is really driving the category, particularly the softer culotte shapes which are new for 2015. In addition, as YOY new styles of the jumpsuit are up by 35% in the UK and a mammoth 126% in America, we can tell you – via INstock – the jumpsuit is going nowhere. And that’s all thanks to data. Kind of amazing, no?
DATA, DELIVERED: Want to know more about WGSN INstock? Of course you do! Check it out here.