4,000,000 UK consumers stopped buying fashion accessories in 2017

The share of UK clothing shoppers that purchased accessories fell from * 50.6% in 2016 to 40.9% in 2017, equating to four million fewer consumers and £390m in lost revenue, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

The company’s latest report ‘The UK Accessories Market 2017-2022’ reveals that this is based on an average annual spend per head of £98, and lead to a volume decline of 0.8% in 2017 compared to a flat performance in 2016.

Honor Strachan, Principal Retail Analyst for GlobalData commented: “Replacement purchases are now the main trigger of purchasing accessories among domestic shoppers, compared to consumers spending to treat themselves. This puts huge pressure on retailers to encourage trading up, or to diversify to make up for absent sales.”

Consumers will extend replacement cycles during periods of restrained discretionary spending, a major blow for retailers. Wants-driven purchases have become more challenging, particularly for specialists Accessorize and Claire’s, which are unable to stimulate footfall via other categorie

Strachan concludes: “While the premium and luxury segments of the UK fashion accessories market bask in the attention of high-spending overseas visitors, the mass market players are suffering from a major drop in domestic consumer willingness.”

‘*’ The survey data is taken from GlobalData Retail’s 2017 clothing survey of 5,000 shoppers.

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