After having recorded steep declines in volume and current value terms in 2020, designer apparel and footwear (ready-to-wear) has seen overall sales rebound in 2021, especially during the second half of the year. All categories have shown markedly improved performances as the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines has allowed for the lifting of lockdown measures that had been imposed to curb the spread of the virus and supported a robust recovery in the Dutch economy.
As is the case in most luxury goods categories, e-commerce has continued to gain ground at the expense of store-based retailing in designer apparel and footwear in 2021 due to public health restrictions and concerns about community transmission of COVID-19. Dutch consumers have become more comfortable buying these products via e-commerce platforms since the beginning of the pandemic, with many developing a newfound appreciation for the convenience, wider range of choices and potential to find better price deals that online shopping affords.
Designer footwear looks set to post slightly slower growth in retail volume and current value terms than designer apparel for 2021 as a whole. The former category has been harder hit by public health restrictions affecting non-essential retailers and the increased reluctance of shoppers to visit physical stores due to fear of contracting COVID-19, as Dutch consumers are usually less inclined to buy shoes online than they are clothes and accessories.
While sales are likely to take longer to recover to pre-pandemic levels as compared to standard categories, designer apparel and footwear looks set to develop positively in volume and current value terms throughout the forecast period. Overall growth rates are expected to pick up in 2022 as the recovery in the Dutch economy solidifies and more people resume their normal routines in line with anticipated improvements in the local epidemiological situation.
Although it will remain considerably smaller than the corresponding women’s category, men's designer footwear is expected to record healthy growth in volume and current value sales over the forecast period. It will continue to benefit from the increasing willingness of many Dutch men to pay higher prices for shoes that offer superior quality standards and more stylish or distinctive designs.
With the fallout of COVID-19 having accelerated the long-term migration to online shopping in the Netherlands, the value share of e-commerce in designer apparel and footwear will continue to rise over the forecast period. Further gains for the channel will also be supported by sustained investment in digital sales and marketing strategies by producers and larger retailers.
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Designer Apparel and Footwear (Ready-to-Wear)
This is the aggregation of designer apparel and designer footwear.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Designer Apparel and Footwear (Ready-to-Wear) research and analysis database.
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