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Featured Dec 18, 2019 5 min read

How can retail analytics improve industry processes?

The fashion world may be forward in designs, but regressive in processes. Find out how retail analytics can make comp shopping, trend research and Monday trade meetings easier.

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To an outsider, fashion and retail is seen as a forward-thinking and innovative industry. Yet, those who live it know just how old school some processes are.

Are you dreading trying to pull market insights ahead of your Monday meetings? Or manually typing the price points of the dresses from the ‘new in’ section at ASOS into an excel spreadsheet for your weekly comp shop?

Enter retail analytics to change the game. Earlier this year, we discussed using retail analytics to simplify your seasonal product launches. Read on as we show you how EDITED’s Retail Decision Platform can make comp shopping, trend research and Monday trade meetings easier. And get in touch for a demo to see how you can conquer retail today. 

Weekly comp shopping

Comp shopping is something all fashion buyers would have undertaken when they first cut their teeth in the industry. While it’s an extremely vital process that informs wider product and pricing strategies, anyone in retail can tell you it’s manual and time-consuming. Not to mention, boring AF.  

In the pre-internet era, comp shopping involved Buying Admin Assistants trying to inconspicuously trawl their competitors’ stores with a clipboard in hand. They would be required to take notes of new styles, price points, care and composition information and any promotional offerings. So while comp shops today can be carried out without leaving your desk, it still isn’t the most efficient or exciting task. 

Using EDITED’s Retail Decision Platform, category managers can automate customized dashboards for their assistants to access this data in real-time. Plug in the retailers you’re interested in analyzing and the category you buy for. Then, subscribe to be notified when your competitors are dropping new items, as well as when they are discounting products for the first time.

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Trend tracking and research

As each runway season wraps up, buyers and designers worldwide manually sift through the collections to identify the most successful trends to adopt into their assortments. At EDITED,  we’ve done the hard work for you with our Runway Reports, curated by our team of in-house Analysts. Our team reviews every look from the runway and applies their knowledge of what’s working commercially, so you know the winners to back.

By combining different functions of EDITED, retailers can have the latest data at their fingertips by analyzing the performance of a trend and how it’s evolved from the runway and into the retail market. To gather this information, you’ll be able to use your understanding of your consumers to establish whether you need to continue backing this trend or if it’s become too commercial so you can start reducing your assortment. 

Let’s look at the data powering the puff sleeve trend, which didn’t start to gain traction until January 2019. In the Fall 2019 shows, this silhouette was prominent at designers such as Off-White and Gucci, ensuring its position within mass market assortments in the coming months.  

When retailers dropped their Fall collections, puff sleeves were a mainstay in tops, dresses, all-in-ones and outerwear. A growing number of new styles each month propelled the trend further, making it a defining shape for Fall 2019. October saw the largest intake with overall new arrivals increasing by 316% YoY across the US and UK markets.

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The Spring 2020 runway confirmed the longevity of this silhouette, which dominated at Prabal Gurung, Valentino, Giambattista Valli and more. Take the guesswork out of assortment planning by combining the latest runway trends with retail analytics. This will give you an edge on your competition (who are without a doubt buying into the balloon sleeve), as well as a sanity check of why this shape should be in your transitional assortments. 

You can even break it down into more granular detail to pull out automatic insights into this trend and spot areas of opportunity. For example, retail analytics can tell us that from the beginning of December, 33% of new tops with a puff sleeve silhouette arriving online at US mass retailers have fallen under the sweaters/jumpers category. And of the new dress arrivals with a voluminous sleeve, green is the most dominant color after black. Also, patterns are proving more popular than plain for these dresses with 61% of all new arrivals featuring a print, with spots as the most invested pattern.

Latest interpretations of the puff sleeve trend in the market:

Monday trade reporting

Definitively the most important day of the week for anyone working in retail. Monday meetings are the time to analyze what went down last week and discuss action plans going forward. It’s a meeting that requires calculating figures, printing reports and filling racks of your top and bottom performing products. You’re usually so busy looking at what’s going on in your category for your brand that you forget to take a step back and look at the bigger picture. Using retail analytics, we produce a variety of weekly reports to help you prepare for those stressful meetings:

Weekly Product Updates

Split by men and womenswear covering the US and UK markets, these reports give a snapshot of the market over the past week. Retailers can see emerging product trends, collaborations and market analysis by category to better inform the decisions made in trade meetings. These reports include pricing and discounting information to ensure your category is priced in line with the market.

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Visual Merchandising Update

We round up what your competitors have been promoting over the past week by looking at events, campaigns, product & Instagram trends, navigation menus and discounts featured in retailers’ email communication, alongside directional commentary to inform your promotional strategies for the week. 

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Visual Merchandising

Weekly Trending on Instagram

Instagram is a vital platform to monitor emerging trends and the product your competitors are performing. Save yourself hours of scrolling with our weekly reports. Spanning womenswear, menswear and childrenswear, EDITED analysts curate the most influential trends retailers shared on Instagram over the past week.

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Weekly Trending on Instagram

If you’re an EDITED user, you can log in to access our suite of reports right away. If you want access to these reports and functions to help improve the processes in your business, talk to one of our product specialists today!