Three things to know about fashion merchandising

From the manufacturing process to the decisions that are made on shop floors around the world, there are many moving parts involved in getting clothes off the racks and into the wardrobes of the consumer.

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1. Effective merchandising requires a passion for both fashion and business

Fashion merchandising can be accurately described as the science behind ensuring that your store has the correct quantity of products available at just the right time, for the right price, in all the right places.

The responsibilities associated with effective fashion merchandising are varied; however, you will certainly be required to know how to predict, understand and respond to the wants, needs, and behavior of the consumer to successfully maximize sales and increase revenue.

2. Fashion merchandising encompasses an array of job titles

Every manufacturer and retailer has a team of people who are involved in fashion merchandising but very few experiences the entire process. Instead, most merchandisers will specialize in a particular area.

As this Telegraph article explains, the ambiance of the retail store, which is often effectively created by a range of in-store media, plays a significant role in the consumer purchasing process. It is the job of a visual merchandiser to create a space that will maximize sales. Everything from 3D product displays to music selection can help brands to establish powerful emotional connections with consumers, and in store media from Mood Media can be tailored to a unique set of brand values to create a signature sound that will appeal to a target demographic.

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3. Manufacturers and retailers rely on fashion merchandising experts

Fashion merchandising at the level of manufacture involves accurately forecasting of popular colors, patterns, and shapes, diligently estimating required quantities and sizes, and carefully determining the optimal price each piece should be sold to retailers for. Fashion merchandisers working at this level will collaborate with fashion designers to determine how to make items more desirable and affordable for the consumer. This will often involve considering production methods, potential promotions, and fabric selection.

In the retail space, fashion merchandisers will forecast and research which trends target demographics will want to access and when. This role stretches far beyond upcoming trends, however, because consumer purchases are influenced by an array of factors, including brand image, cultural and industry influencers, and even what the current economic landscape looks like.