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Footwear is a huge and increasingly diversified business, driven by a host of demographic, lifestyle and fashion trends. As a result, the industry is being segmented ever more finely as seen in the diversity of mainstream footwear trends — from casual comfort to sexy stiletto, and the fact that, in recent years, a far greater range of styles has become acceptable in the U.S. workplace. The liberalization of footwear norms coincided with an era of greed and seemingly endless conspicuous consumption where $150 sneakers and $500 pumps were easily consumed with ever-expanding consumer credit.
However, with a new economic reality comes a paradigm shift in the consumer mindset. For some consumers, charge now and pay later has been replaced with pay now or don’t buy at all. Instead of feeling good about expensive or ostentatious brands as they have in the past, many consumers will increasingly feel good about getting the best value, making the smartest choice, or not spending at all in 2009. The surge in frugality has brought back a variety of money-saving behaviors from days of yore, such as layaway and home cooked meals. Even cobblers are making a comeback.
Packaged Facts estimates the global footwear market at retail grew two percent over the 2007 level of $189.3 billion to $192.3 billion in 2008. Though the U.S. market grew at an annual rate of six percent between 2004 and 2008, growth in 2008 was much more subdued at less than two percent. For the footwear industry, an ongoing consumer paradigm shift in attitudes towards greater frugality and less conspicuous consumption means high-flying fashion brands may suffer at the expense of less expensive alternatives. But can the major marketers and retailers adapt?
The Global Footwear Market: Athletic and non-Athletic Shoes examines these questions and many others by looking at the current market, trends, major brands, and consumer preferences. The report presents concise, thought provoking analysis of various aspects of the footwear industry and provides a forecast for the market through 2013.
Read an excerpt from this report below.Research Methodology
The information presented in this report was obtained from primary and secondary research. Primary research entailed on-site examination of footwear products in retail stores and consultations with footwear industry observers and executives. Secondary research involved canvassing information from financial, marketing, and trade publications, company literature, and independent research reports, plus reviews of industry group websites, such as the American Apparel and Footwear Association, and blogs and readers’ comments posted on these sites. Information was also gathered from the U.S Department of Commerce’s U.S. Census Bureau and major players in the industry. Other market data sources included the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC), and Experian Simmons Market Research Bureau (New York, NY) Winter 2008/09 Study of Media and Markets.
About the Author
Cogitamus Consulting is a branding and market research boutique in NYC that's all about hard work, imagination and common sense. Working with our clients, we custom tailor solutions and provide creative, thought-provoking analysis that address the most pertinent questions facing marketers, through general business consulting, white papers, and branded product concept and strategy development.
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