By Blacks Senior Consultant, Steve Pruitt Overview: For the past two decades, traditional menswear retailers have been catering to a uniquely wealthy and fashion-oriented group of men from the Baby Boomer generation. However, a dramatic change in the financial landscape, and the Boomers’ exit from the marketplace, means that retailers must target a new generation [...]
By Blacks Senior Consultant, Steve Pruitt
Let’s be frank – 2009 was a tough year. As a retailer there’s not a lot you can do when consumers stop spending, except manage your business as best as you can and wait for the tide to turn.
The problem many retailers faced this last year was that they had failed to put some key management principles in place before the economy went sour, which made it harder to keep their businesses afloat.
All eyes are on Christmas right now, but soon the holiday will be a distant (and hopefully pleasant) memory and you’ll be faced with what to do the day after. Since we’d hate to see you unprepared, here’s Blacks list of top things retailers need to do the day after Christmas. 1) Take an aspirin, [...]
A note to retailers: We are now one week away from Christmas and all your events and promotions should be in place. If you are thinking of hatching a new strategy, don’t do it. You’re only job right now is to sell and enjoy each day, because whether you are up or down against last [...]
By Blacks Senior Consultant Steve Pruitt
Several retailers have asked me lately when it is appropriate to take steep markdown to clear goods, and when they should be carried over.
Retailers often ask me how to improve sales and even out cash flow and one answer always leads the list – you have to plan out your flow of new goods. Gone are the days of seasonal buying, when retailers purchased a lump sum of goods to land sometime within the season. In the past, [...]
There’s no doubt about it – the rising cost of better goods combined with a lack of new trends is taking its toll on better retailers. The price of European goods has risen 10% a season over the last few years and Chinese manufacturers are bumping up their costs as well. The price hikes mean [...]
If you have immediate concerns about paying your suppliers, we can help you generate revenue through a funded promotional sale performed by our partners at Patrick James Promotions (PJP). For over 20 years, Patrick James has helped better menswear and women’s wear retailers create timely cash infusions for their stores. What’s more, they are fellow [...]
There’s no denying it – we’re in a down market. But the first rule of a down market is that there’s a guaranteed opportunity for growth in the future. When business is trending down it’s pretty easy to see which categories are holding; these are the low-hanging fruit. A category that’s not dropping as quickly [...]
A year ago today Lehman Brothers collapsed, setting in motion one of the biggest financial crises this century. Since then, a lot has changed in the world of luxury apparel. We’ve seen 30% sales decreases since October of last year and the market is just now starting to improve. In response to the situation, almost [...]
I have been talking to a lot of retailers over the past few weeks about how to deal with the sales slowdown caused by our country’s current economic crisis. This crisis is sure to affect business going forward, making it more important than ever to put retail best practices into place. Here is what we [...]
A lot of people in the retail world have been talking about a recent Wall Street Journal article asserting that the economic slowdown will cause luxury prices to permanently come down. I don’t really believe this, or at least I don’t believe that luxury retailers should let this happen. First of all, real, high-end luxury [...]
Recently I heard the story of a retailer who never took markdowns because she believed that taking markdowns was a sign of business failure. This surprised me because markdowns are a necessity for most retailers, allowing them to create cash flow and generate open-to-buy. Of course, it’s important to know when and how to take [...]
Vendors have been on a retail push in recent years, opening standalone stores and selling direct to consumers online. This has left specialty retailers in a difficult position as they try to manage competition from their own vendors. So, what do you do when your key vendors start moving in on your turf? If you [...]