TAILORING RANGES FOR CUSTOMER TYPE IN AN INDEPENDENT MENSWEAR CHAIN – MAXIMISING ON STORE BRAND STRENGTHS

THE BACKGROUND & CHALLENGE

An independent Menswear chain of 5 shops had enjoyed good 4 % to 6% annual growth over a period of 2 years but needed enhanced visibility of performance and the adoption of a structured approach to buying to sustain growth and support the opening of new stores.

THE APPROACH

  1. The analysis of sales by store by to clearly identify customer tastes
  2. The review of sales by month to establish sales trends in what is a highly seasonal sector (ie Menswear )
  3. Branding sales and profit performance by brand
  4. A space review by brand by store.
  5. Line by line analysis – to show key drivers & pricing skews.
  6. The construction of a trading review pack to be used by store and buying personnel

THE BENEFITS

  1. Resultant sales plans by store related directly to space return , brand skew and therefore customer tastes
  2. Sales and buying plans according to best/ worst performing brands/ product types – ensuring markdowns are minimised and availability is maintained on core .
  3. A monthly space plan reflecting sesonal product trends
  4. Regular review of sales vs plan at store and product group level as well as stock levels and weeks cover
  5. The incorporation of store managers into the planning process and performance reviews.

STRUCTURED SUPPLY CHAIN & MANAGEMENT STRATEGY FOR A MANUFACTURER – LEADING TO IMPROVED SERVICE AND GROWTH

THE BACKGROUND & CHALLENGE

A jewellery brand experienced rapid expansion with sales running 110% ahead of the year. This superb growth brought associated pressures and demands for the team and the factories. There was therefore a need for formalised planning and a more dynamic approach to weekly trading, customer service.

THE APPROACH:

  1. A review of customer base to identify sales and profit drivers
  2. Analysis of sales trends by customer type to establish buying patterns and improve planning for presentation of new ranges.

THE BENEFITS:

  1. Segmentation of customers into clearly defined sectors with personnel structure reflecting hierarchy .
  2. A formalised Range and Buying Process . This includes:
  • Regular analysis of trading by product type and customer & a timetable of product selections emanating from trading results.
  • The setting of sales plans by product and customer sector
  • Create buying plans based on sales plans and the maintenance of stock availability in the warehouse on key/ core lines ( a “ never out of stock “ policy)
  1. Weekly Trading
  • Monitor sales by product and customer vs plan and last year.
  • Account Managers remain close to trading performance of customers and therefore a more dynamic approach to customer service and sales
  • Reporting on warehouse stocks by line and short/ over stocksc
  • Clear visibility for all business of best and worst sellers ( including factories as well as in house personnel)

RANGING & SPACE MANAGEMENT IN A SINGLE SITE INDEPENDENT.

THE BACKGROUND & CHALLENGE

A standalone independent retailer in the home crafts sector was running 12% down on the year and a low sales/ foot in view of the small 400 square feet and denseness of fixture fill. The business required a complete review of current trading to improve sales and drive up sales/ foot.

THE APPROACH

  1. Deal with an unstructured buying process leading to:
    (a) High stock levels 55 weeks cover and an overbuy on virtually all product categories.
    (b) The largest product categories running 30% down on the year,
  1. A review of supplier & product performance revealed:
    (a) Top 2 suppliers of the 47 used accounted for 45% of sales and 50% of profit ( top 5 suppliers , 67% of sales & 70% of profit)
    (b) Out of the 13 categories, the top 2 accounted for 40% of sales and the top 5 drove 72% of sales
    (c) Space fill did not echo sales mix or core product/ brand split

THE BENEFITS

  1. Consolidate range
    (a) Reduce range width based on sell thrus and markdowns incurred.
    (b) Core “Out of stocks “ rectified by improved sales & stock projecting
    (c) Develop a hierarchy of sub categories on top 3 categories to improve visibility of performance
  1. Consolidate suppliers
    Reduce supply base by 40% – decreasing admin/ communication pressures and improving status with key suppliers by increasing business
  2. Improved footage allocation to drive up space return
    re allocate footage according to sales per foot performance by category / suppliers and flexed footages across the year according to seasonal trends
    (b) In tandem with (a) , a new fill requirement to drive a out a true “ ideal stock “ ( in combination with supplier lead times) . This enabled the business to run on less weeks cover and improve cashflow
  1. Structure Buying Process
    Sales & buying plans linked to new space matrix
    Creation of in season open to buy to maximise on besy sellers and move ons

RANGING & UTILISATION OF SPACE FOR LARGE CHAIN

THE BACKGROUND &  CHALLENGE

A high street retailer with a predominantly Menswear offer had the challenge of delivering a profitable Womenswear offer in limited space. Retail Spa was tasked with producing a strategy that would allow a credible offer and delivered a return from space and improved profitability.

THE APPROACH:

  1. Evaluation of History
    Review historical performance on core and seasonal product including individual store trends by product category, best and worst sellers & size ratios
  2. Construct a store grading & option matrix
    (a)Devise a store grading structure including space based on historical performance, missed product skews and space
    (b) Calculate an option plan based on the above which translates into a ranging plan. 
  3. Financial Targets
    (a) From the space matrix, drive a sales plan to deliver an increase in sales/ foot.
    (b) Below top line ,construct a sales plan by product type.
    (c) Sales plans used as foundation for buying plan by product type

THE BENEFITS:

A new store grading structure ensured the best product elements are capitalised on in the correct stores .

(a) A substantial reduction of space (by approx. 30% ) and increased profit on Womenswear.. Thus enabling expansion of more profitable Menswear product areas

(b) A rationalised the range through reduced options with a focus on core availability on volume sellers and best selling fashion styles

(c) Through store grading , improving targeting of ranges according to customer and demographic.

(d) Buying plans directly linked to space avoiding overoptionning , overstocks and wasted cash investment. Ie increased net margin.