“Today, sales continue to drop on average by 40 percent. This means another batch of unsold goods. So merchants will immediately offer big discounts, because they urgently need this money to invest again in the next batch,” the NSZ reasons. The self-employed organization also notes that these summer sales are a test of whether consumers will find their way back to the physical store after all that online shopping and now the shopping curb has been lifted.
Mode Unie and Unizo also mention significant stock, and this is for the third year in a row. In general, traders look positively to the future, but this does not change the fact that the forecast for the upcoming summer sales is moderate. According to Mode Unie and Unizo, more than 56.6 percent of traders surveyed expect fewer sales than they did in the summer of 2019 and 33.3 percent expect the same. “Moderate expectations are there because consumers are currently looking a bit hesitant, although it is clear that they are also starting to feel like trying something new again, a trend that could only increase,” according to the organizations.
A survey by Mode Unie and Unizo showed that 80.1 percent of independent fashion retailers last spring sold less than in 2019, a normal sales year. On average, sales were 23 percent lower than they were in 2019. But there seems to be an improvement on the horizon and after the big drop in sales during the April shopping period, sales are getting better every month, she says.
“Vaccinations are going well, a lot of procedures are relaxed, partying can happen again and we can gradually go back to the office physically. These are all factors that will make consumers feel like they are selling and shopping the new collection again,” according to Mode Unie and Unizo. Finally, merchants are inviting consumers to buy consciously locally and in Belgium. “Now more than ever, this is essential if we are to maintain a diverse and rich fashion scene.”