New A&M Fast Fashion Report Finds Retailers Up Against a “Gotta Have It Now” Culture

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New York, NY –News Direct– Alvarez & Marsal Consumer and Retail Group

· 50% of respondents want to buy a fashion trend within the same week they discover it

· 40% aged 18-44 will compromise brand loyalty for immediacy

· 70% are buying most often for themselves and 50% said personal brand drives their purchases

Global professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal’s Consumer Retail Retail Group (A&M CRG) today released its Fast Fashion report, The New Evolution of Fast Fashion, which looks at the growing role and influence of fast fashion across all of apparel retail. Based on a survey of ~500 U.S. consumers that was conducted in June 2022, the report focuses on changes in fashion shopping, analyzing changing consumer demands, speed to market and brand loyalty; and provides guidance for fashion brands navigating the current environment.

The study finds that fast fashion is poised to retain much of the ground it has gained during the pandemic. “As trend-conscious fashion shoppers became accustomed to shopping online for a plethora of instantaneously available new designs during the pandemic, even some high-end fashion brands and retailers are finding they need to adopt a fast fashion mindset to be successful,” said study co-author Michael Prendergast, Managing Director at Alvarez & Marsal’s Consumer Retail Group. “Retailers who are able to read social media sites for viral data indicators, deliver those or similar designs, and then adjust based on which ones do well or don’t on their own websites are on the right track.”

The study also found that:

· 49% of survey respondents buy their fashion trends online, while 35% shop for them in a mall

· 32% get their fashion inspiration on social media, while 39% get it from retailer website

· 30% of respondents purchase fast fashion at least once a week, while 65% purchase multiple items

· Almost half of respondents said they’d check another retailer if a trend is not available; only 30% will check back with the same retailer for the same trend again

“This craze reflects a massive opportunity across apparel retail—brands need to get the equation right and provide trends quickly and accurately, or risk losing out,” said Joanna Rangarajan, Senior Director at Alvarez & Marsal’s Consumer Retail Group and report co-author. “Companies can take steps to shrink their calendar, adopt a flexible and rapid design-to-delivery model, and make bold, data-informed decisions to keep pace with today’s insatiable customers.”

The report provides insights into key fast fashion focus areas for retailers and brands to compete and survive in this new retail world. As detailed in the analysis, consumers keep raising the bar on their expectations of instant and constantly changing gratification, and retailers have no option but to try and meet them.

Study Methodology

A&M CRG’s Fast Fashion survey was conducted in the first week of June 2022, polling around 500 U.S. consumers ages 18-65 across all regions in the United States through an online panel survey. Income, age, and gender demographics were based on U.S. Census distribution.

The Alvarez and Marsal Consumer and Retail Group (CRG) is a management consulting firm that tackles the most complex challenges and advances its clients, people, and communities toward their maximum potential. CRG combines the best of A&M’s broader firm’s bias toward action and practicality with deep consumer and retail industry experience. CRG partners with businesses across a wide range of categories including Food & Beverage, Beauty & Personal Care, Grocery, Mass Merchandise, and Apparel & Footwear to drive significant performance improvement.

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David Schneidman

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