The retail - apparel, fashion & luxury (AF&L) - industry was already under pressure coming into 2020 as consumers changed their shopping habits and more sales shifted to – the less profitable - digital channels. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, AF&L brands of all sizes are under even more pressure.
October retail sales overall deceleration and rapid increase in COVID cases across the U.S. continue to push sales into digital channels and put pressure on brick-and-mortar locations.
Against this backdrop, retailers are grappling with questions that could determine their future:
What can we do to stay top of mind with customers, especially when they cannot visit our stores and may need to reduce their discretionary spend?
What about the strategy around our store footprint and our landlords? How should we think about store profitability, and how many of our locations should keep open going forward?
How do we best allocate resources to address the accelerated shift towards e-commerce, and what does that mean from a day-to-day operating perspective?
Do we have the right digital marketing strategy in place to drive traffic to our e-commerce properties, increase conversion and AOV?
What about our vendors, who have seen orders canceled and may be facing insolvency challenges of their own?
How do we retain our best employees, many of whom have been furloughed?
How to we manage our creditors?
While some companies are not going to make it through the pandemic, at least not in their current form and under their current ownership, there are opportunities for many companies to turnaround their operations, stabilize their business and re-group as they get ready to perform in what will be a very different market environment.
Strategic advise for high-end e-commerce marketplace exploring international expansion
As management search for new avenues of growth to offset a slowdown in the U.S market, Mexico and other major Latin America countries presented an intriguing option, but the client needed a better understanding of the competitive landscape and the real attractiveness of the opportunity.
Contact us to learn more about how we can support you as you navigate these complex and uncertain times.