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How Can A Retail ERP Solution Help With Tracking The Latest Trends?

Man shopping online with laptop

A retail ERP solution can help uncover customer trends such as the driving force behind retail’s newest makeover: the growing demographic of male bargain shoppers.

In an article on CNBC’s website, research firm WSL Strategic Retail reports that stereotypes about men not liking to shop, use coupons or ask for help are off base. Of the 740 men surveyed, 63 percent said they “actively look for sales in stores and a little more than half admit to regularly using coupons.”

This is an example of why retailers need to monitor and track trends using analytics gathered by a retail ERP solution. For example, if the men’s department has traditionally been a small section of your 10,000-square-foot store, it might make sense to expand the department and offer more promotions to attract more male shoppers.

The men of the millennial and Generation X age groups are driving this trend. So what makes them different? WSL President Candace Corlett says societal changes created a new breed of male shoppers: they grew up spending time at the mall, got married at a later age and typically have a working spouse. The recession also brought to light bargain-hunting male shoppers. “Men wanted to save just as much as anyone,” says Brian Hoyt, head of communications for online coupon website RetailMeNot.com. Men make up 40 percent of the site’s users.

While there’s still a pretty big gap between men’s and women’s sales — $58 billion in men’s apparel sales compared to roughly $112 in women’s billion apparel sales — brands like Coach and Michael Kors are catering to the emerging shopping demographic by expanding their menswear line with staples like watches and leather goods.

But the male demographic is not a one-size-fits-all strategy, and analytics from a retail ERP solution can give insight into the shopping behavior of your male clientele. The key is to track promotions and examine whether your store is experiencing an increase in men’s clothing sales. If you’re stocking more men’s apparel but not selling more, you won’t be successful. That’s why analytics is so important.

Retailers must understand who their customers are and track the results of promotions. A retail ERP solution can help to manage that data, allowing you to make strategic decisions that lead to growth.

Source: CNBC, September 2013