The Future Of the Retail Industry

Change is an inevitable part of life and adapting to it is the only way forward. If you cannot change the situation, you must start finding ways to survive and live with it

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Footwear as we all understand is one of the basic necessities such as clothing and shelter. Moreover, footwear nowadays defines fashion too.

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Retail footwear industry would mean selling footwear through brick-and-mortar stores or through online stores. The industry like any other industry has been adversely impacted due to the ongoing pandemic as the economic condition of many have been impacted and the demand of the same has also dropped owing to various other factors. This year also retail shoe stores showed a decreasing trend as the number of COVID cases started to rise again with second wave putting an end to the recovery phase which was expected post the end of first wave of COVID-19 pandemic.

As far as the Indian footwear industry is concerned, they sell from the cheapest to high-end branded footwear. Owing to the pandemic the shoe retailers have had a lot of challenges to handle such as government-imposed lockdowns, leading to stocking of old goods and decline in their revenue. Also, with work from home being implemented in most jobs the demand for footwear also plunged. The buying behavior of the customer shifted with decrease in purchase of commodities putting it at the end of the priority list of the customers. Shoes per say are not on the buying list till the time the pandemic surpasses.

The Indian shoe industry is highly labour intensive, thus putting backward pull on the socio-economic conditions of the industry. It has become extremely challenging for the retailers to pay the rentals and bear the staff costs.

Taking into consideration all the factors stated above, e-commerce as an option is being taken into consideration by retailers and clearance of stock through sales could be considered. Emphases is being laid on making the digital experience user friendly. For brick-and-mortar stores, vaccination of staff should be the priority and displaying the information about the same in the stores in order to grab customers and provide customer safety.

Focusing on the comfortable slippers and flip flops for short term till the pandemic panic comes down as the demand for these is still expected to be high than the formal footwear. These can be some of the steps that can be taken to revamp the retail segment of the footwear industry.

Change is an inevitable part of life and adapting to it is the only way forward. If you cannot change the situation, you must start finding ways to survive and live with it. Same goes for the retail industry, we will have to survive this storm until it passes by and things turn back to the normal.