My Tuesday morning started with a quick stop at my local mall that turned into a full expedition. I initially only had one thing in mind, picking up a pair of red huarache to fulfill a customer’s order, but I couldn’t keep myself from getting into my Sherlock Holmes mode- I had to surf a few stores and jot down my observations. My first stop was DTLR where I inquired about the Jordan 1 Obsidian. The store I was visiting only received 10 pairs in men’s which were obviously all gone before noon the day they dropped. Grade school sizes were also all sold out and that shouldn’t be a surprise, see my post below, it talks about it
But the biggest take away at that location was the shoes that were still rotting on the shelves; to give you a better illustration of what I observed , I decided to put my data in the histogram below
This is the men’s wall and I hope you can notice the obvious- The store is dominated by Nike sneakers ( and we all know that Converse is technically Nike as well). Based on the chart above, 61.4% ( 132 out of 215)of the men’s wall is made up of Nike sneakers, 10.23% ( 22 out of 215)by New Balance ( which is the most represented brand beside Nike). You can see the clear disparity between Nike and the other brands and that’s a huge problem. I’ll show you some of the issues with this kind of heavy reliance on Nike in the next chart.
70 out of the 132 Nike sneakers on the men’s wall were on sale, that’s about 53% ( more than half of the inventory). And when I took a look at the markdowns, they ranged between 10% to 40% ( as it relates to Nike shoes only). Now let’s check out the other brands:
8 out of 14 Puma sneakers were on sale, that is 57.14%
9 out of 22 New Balance sneakers were on sale, that is 40.91%
no Adidas sneakers were on sale
7 out of 9 Reebok sneakers were on sale, that is 77.78%
4 out of 15 Champion sneakers were on sale, that is 26.67%
8 out 9 Fila sneakers were on sale, that is 88.89%.
9 out of 10 Converse sneakers were on sale, that is 90%
If you take all the sales percentages into consideration, you may be fooled into thinking that Fila and Converse might be the hardest brands to move( sell) since they registered the highest number of sales. But I want your focus to rather be on the amount of representation- Nike has the highest representation in that store (out of the 215 men’s sneakers, 132 came from Nike vs 83 from all the other brands combined).
The heavy reliance on Nike shoes is a problem retailers won’t fix since most of them are reluctant to push any other brands. Retailers get a false sense of security when they experience a good Saturday; what I mean by a good Saturday is when Nike releases a shoe like the Air Jordan 1 Obsidian. This type of shoe is coveted by the masses so it’s no secret that it will sell out instantly. But those good Saturdays are very scarce and retailers like DTLR don’t have the luxury of the RTV system to purge their overloaded shelves, see post below about this topic
Nike shoes dominate most shelves but they are overpriced and there is nothing the retailer can do about it. The only other alternative is to dump them on StockX secretly to get rid of them, and I’m sure it’s happening now since several sneakers are being sold via StockX for below their retail price a week to two weeks before their official release date ( ask yourself where those shoes are coming from). Nike continues to release products that will make you scratch your head; the brand has been preaching the Edit To Amplify but is seldom running parallel to it. Retailers’s shelves are filled with junk Nike sneakers that no one really wants.
Retailers are up against several giants, their lack of understanding of their target market and the proper distribution channel is another thorn on their side. It’s hard to surf footlocker’s eCommerce shop for certain shoes because the website lacks the proper name, style#, etc.. check the screenshot below
I repeated the same action via StockX and the results are totally different.
Before I even finished typing the 990, the search engine was already spitting out all the models available as well as pictures. Most people are in a haste when their shopping and the last thing they want is an archaic system like footlocker’s. I won’t elaborate on this anymore. But there is a reason why retailers are struggling and I just showed you one example among many others. I’ll stop here and encourage you to read the post below to see how Housakicks can assist you in solving some of these problems