The Major International Retail Brand Dilemma

By Bob Morrell on January 6, 2016

In the same retail park as that of the previous blog post, we came across two bizarre situations. Designer brands had opened large shops there selling full ranges of clothes. Now the Canary islands have large numbers of transient tourists coming and going. This retail park is clearly there to attract tourists. But I don’t know about you, but when I go on holiday I don’t have much luggage space in my bag for brand new clothes. These designer brands were targeting their products on North European customers so the shop was full of jumpers, winter coats and bulky clothing. One Manager was candid enough to admit they’d sold nothing because the products were the wrong range, and it was 30 degrees outside which isn’t conducive to selling winter garments! This is logistical poor planning. Surely the territory managers should be able to dictate the range and the omni-channel director should be making sure that seasonal products are kept back for different international locations where more appropriate product ranges are likely to sell.

Lastly, I went into a concession to buy a ring for my wife. The ring was from a major brand. I was about to purchase and asked ‘If it’s the wrong size can I take it to a shop in the UK that sells these and exchange it?’ the answer was no. This concession was a ‘franchise’ for the brand, not the actual brand itself. It’s a different arrangement and if I’d bought it, and the ring was the wrong size I would have been stuck with it. Again, here is retail policy missing a trick. Encouraging customers to buy with a free exchange policy will simply increase sales. The logistics of it are for the retailer to ponder, but it’s not that hard to get it right. Regardless of the business deal done with the franchisee you risk damaging your brand’s reputation with issues like this.