Women's Clothing - Canada - June 2017


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Mintel

$ 3995

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Prioritizing comfort over style, Canadian women enjoy the clothes shopping process and are highly engaged. However, a conservative mindset towards discretionary spending means that consumers lean more towards retailers that are perceived to offer the best value. The tendency remains skewed towards buying clothes from physical stores, as fit continues to be a concern hindering women from buying clothes online. Retailers in Canada will need to step up their game as entrants of international brands are impacting the landscape of the clothing industry.

Table of Content

OVERVIEW
What you need to know
Definition

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The issues
Shifts in the Canadian retail landscape drive a deeper wedge into an already fragmented market
Figure 1: Purchase location (net any online or in-store purchase), March 2017
Canadian women dress more for comfort than for style
Figure 2: Personal style, March 2017
Physical shops continue to be preferred – even amongst Millennial women
Figure 3: Purchase location (net any online or in-store purchase), March 2017
The opportunities
Brands offering expertise in styling are well positioned to connect with 18-24s
Figure 4: Style-related statements (any agree), by age, March 2017
Mass merchandisers have a captive audience in new moms
Figure 5: Purchase location (net any online or in-store purchase), by moms with under-5s, March 2017
Storytelling that is focused on quality will be key to draw to over-45s
Figure 6: Agreement with ‘Good quality is more important to me than low price when I am shopping for clothes’, by age and income, March 2017
What it means

THE MARKET – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Women’s clothing is slated for moderate growth
Younger women feel financially strapped
Obesity remains an issue

MARKET SIZE AND FORECAST
Women’s clothing is slated for moderate growth
Figure 7: Retail Canadian sales and fan chart forecast of women’s clothing, at current prices, 2011-21
Figure 8: Retail Canadian sales and forecast of women’s clothing, at current prices, 2011-21

MARKET FACTORS
Women are more likely to be concerned about their financial situation
Women’s participation in the labour market lags behind men’s
Figure 9: Employment rate of women and men aged 25-54, 1950-2016
Young women, in particular, are more likely to be struggling to make ends meet
Opportunities and challenges come with an aging population
Figure 10: Agreement with statement ‘I would like more stores to carry plus sizes’, by age, March 2017
As of 2014, nearly half of the female population were overweight or obese
Figure 11: Body mass index, self-reported rate of being overweight or obese among Canadian women, 2003-14

KEY PLAYERS – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
The casualization of fashion is changing how women dress and how stores cater to customers
Body empowerment and inclusivity increase appeal
International retailers are refreshing the shopping experience
The Canadian clothing retail market is becoming more polarized
Clothes and clothing stores get more personal by getting smarter

WHAT’S IN?
The casualization of fashion draws crowds
Older women have something new to shop for
Athletic brands are becoming lifestyle brands
Figure 12: This is Yoga | Celebrating real stories of practice in action, May 2017
Clothing brands are adding to their collections by embracing diversity
Figure 13: Not your typical runner. #iwontcompromise, May 2016
Figure 14: F*This TV campaign - Addition Elle, September 2016
International retailers are making their mark

WHAT’S OUT?
Clothing retailer closures and openings indicate polarization of Canadian retail

WHAT’S NEXT?
Clothing stores get smarter and provide a more personalized experience
Clothing itself gets more advanced with tech integrations also
Walmart is looking to boost its online fashion presence

THE CONSUMER – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Women are highly engaged in the category
Retailer preference variation shows fashion priorities
Fit first, technology second to enhance the shopping experience
Canadian women dress for comfort over style
The clothes shopping process is an enjoyable one

WOMEN’S CLOTHING PURCHASES
Category involvement is high
Figure 15: Categories purchased, March 2017
Retirement means one less activity to buy clothes for
Figure 16: Repertoire analysis of categories purchased, by age, March 2017
Older women will continue to seek new things, and seek quality
Younger women have more occasions to wear dresses
Figure 17: Purchased dresses, by age, March 2017
T-shirts are a cost-effective way to stay on-trend and make a statement

WHERE WOMEN SHOP FOR CLOTHES
Consumers are choosing retailers known for value
Figure 18: Purchase location (net any online or in-store purchase), March 2017
Preferred store types vary by age and reveal fashion priorities
Fast fashion stores are winning with 18-24s
Figure 19: Selected purchase locations (net any online or in-store purchase), by age, March 2017
Convenience draws moms with young children to mass merchandisers
Warehouse clubs are making inroads with 45-54s
Figure 20: Bought clothes at warehouse clubs (net any online or in-store purchase), by age, March 2017
High-end offerings at traditional department stores appeal to the affluent woman
Preference still skews towards physical stores
Figure 21: Purchase location, online vs in-store, March 2017
Yes, physical stores still are important to Millennial women
Figure 22: Agreement with statement ‘I like to browse items online, then buy in-store’, by age, March 2017

INTEREST IN RETAILER INNOVATIONS
It’s all about the fit
Figure 23: Interest in shopping innovations, March 2017
Online sizing technology appeals to women young and old
Figure 24: Interest in sizing technology to ensure clothing bought online fits my measurements, by age, March 2017
18-24s are seeking a better in-store experience
18-24s drive interest in customization and smart fitting rooms
Figure 25: Interest in ‘options to personalize clothes’ and ‘smart fitting rooms’, by age, March 2017
18-24s also lead the desire for more in-store experiences

PERSONAL STYLE
Canadian women dress for comfort over style
Figure 26: Personal style, March 2017
Comfort vs style – In their words
18-34s want uniqueness and could use a little help
Figure 27: Style-related statements (any agree), by age, March 2017
Sporty looks appeal to over-45s
Figure 28: Agreement with sporty clothing styles being practical for everyday wear, by age, March 2017
Figure 29: French Lessons with Helen Mirren | L'Oréal Paris Age Perfect | Behind the Scenes, March 2017
Figure 30: Look Your Perfect Age with Hydra-Nutrition | Age Perfect | L’Oréal, August 2016
Moms with young children want to be more stylish but don’t know how
“One day you’re in, the next day you’re out”; style matters more for the affluent
Figure 31: Agreement with ‘I buy new clothes every season’, by household income, March 2017

APPROACH TO CLOTHES SHOPPING
Women enjoy the clothes shopping process
Figure 32: Shopping approach, March 2017
Younger women are more enthusiastic about clothes shopping…
Figure 33: Agreement with enjoying the shopping process and not making plans when clothes shopping, by age, March 2017
…they are also more brand-loyal
Figure 34: Agreement with ‘I tend to buy the same brands of clothing’, by age, March 2017

THE QUEST FOR VALUE
Value is in the eye of the beholder
Figure 35: Shopping approach: seeking discounts, March 2017
FOMO drives younger consumers towards greater willingness to pay full price
Quality is a top consideration for older and more affluent customers
Figure 36: Agreement with ‘Good quality is more important to me than low price when I am shopping for clothes’, by age and income, March 2017
Made-in-Canada labels may have some legs with over-55s

CANADIAN VS AMERICANS – CLOTHES SHOPPING APPROACH
Physical shops are key to connecting with the Canadian woman
Canadian women more likely to enjoy the clothes shopping process
Figure 37: Agreement with ‘I enjoy shopping for clothes’, by age, Canada vs US, March 2017 (Canada)/January 2015 (US)
Striving for comfort takes the pressure off for Canadians
Figure 38: Agreement with ‘I dress for comfort over style’, by age, Canada vs US, March 2017 (Canada)/January 2015 (US)
In-store suggestions are key to getting them hooked
Figure 39: Agreement with ‘I like to browse items online, then buy in-store’, by age, Canada vs US, March 2017 (Canada)/January 2015 (US)
Pursuing the middle-aged Canadian woman may yield greater gains
Figure 40: Agreement with ‘I buy new clothes every season’, by age, Canada vs US, March 2017 (Canada)/January 2015 (US)
Figure 41: Agreement with ‘I never pay full price for clothing’, by age, Canada vs US, March 2017 (Canada)/January 2015 (US)

APPENDIX – DATA SOURCES AND ABBREVIATIONS
Data sources
Consumer survey data
Consumer qualitative research
Abbreviations and terms
Abbreviations

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