The widening wealth gap in Taiwan resulting from uneven economic growth has affected consumer purchasing behaviour and thus impacted the overall performance of apparel and footwear specialist retailers. International boutiques in particular, although remaining stable, are experiencing limited growth due to weak spending power.
Consumers are not buying footwear as regularly as they were in the past, due in large part to ongoing economic conditions. The product replacement lifecycle is lengthening.
In 2018, product function experienced strong demand, and these consumers are showing demand for function over pure design. Retailers have begun to actively educate consumers; that they have the capability to improve their situation by switching footwear.
Fast fashion is a relatively recent arrival in Taiwan. Uniqlo and Zara were the first to open in the country in 2010 and 2011 respectively, followed by H&M.
Not all segments of apparel and footwear specialist retailers are surviving the economic climate and growth in internet retailing. Premium and economy operators are performing better than mid-positioned brands in general.
Female consumers in Taiwan are regarded as having very low brand loyalty levels. With strong competition from internet retailing and poor economic conditions, this group of consumers is very fluid in their purchasing preferences.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Retailing market research database.