Retail Is Not Dead. It Has Evolved.

The Driving Force Behind Brands That Resonate Versus Brands That Fade Away is Innovative Merchandising Strategy.

Our Retail Merchandising Consultants help you create and sell a product assortment your customers crave through brand exploration, sales analysis, process mapping, and innovative sourcing.

We Have Had The Pleasure Of Driving Results For

1.16

Billion In Client Revenue

5

Fortune - Ranked Companies

113

Small & Med Businesses

That's You

We Work With Retail Visionaries.

The retail industry is constantly evolving.  The headlines about companies downsizing or going out of business seem to be rampant.  However, the retail companies that are thriving are the retailers and brands leading the charge in innovation, omnichannel retailing, product mix curation, and who consistently and authentically serve their customers how and where they demand.

Our Retail Consultants implement sales-driving merchandising strategies and processes that give you a competitive edge and a resounding presence in your seemingly overcrowded market.  We empower you to continuously capture and grow your retail market share by curating a product assortment your customers crave.

We ensure that innovation is thread throughout your operations and in the core of your DNA to ensure that you are seen as a retail destination or magnetizing brand for years to come.

Think of it this way – instead of you hiring one single person to fulfill merchandising strategy responsibility, you have access to our diverse, global team of millennial fashion students and graduates, as well as seasoned retail industry experts from all walks of life.  You have a force behind you driving you forward.

The future of retail is YOU.

launch a product, start a boutique

How We Create Your Product Merchandising Strategy

Our project approach is affectionately named The E.V.O.L.V.E. method:

E Evaluate the current state of your business through a comprehensive brand audit – reviewing your product assortment, sales and inventory reports, website / store merchandising, and current assortment plans

V Validate our analysis of your brand audit with research + focus groups regarding your brand positioning within the greater industry

O Organize our findings into actionable tasks, conduct business and trend research, and together, establish our vision for your business’s future to create the strategic merchandising plan we will execute

L Leverage our global network of millennial fashion graduates, seasoned industry experts, branding designers, and international retail partners to enhance and expand your brand market share

V Verify that our strategic plan is working effectively and results are as expected – and course-correct areas of improvement

E Experience a new way ahead for your business, with us as strategic partners in your retail success

Our Retail Consultants Will Expertly Guide You To Product Management Success

The Strategy Details

01 Brand Exploration

Brand Concept + Customer Persona

We truly drill down to your vision for the brand.  We will define who your brand is – what is your brand persona?  Who is your target customer?  Where does that customer live, work, play, their hobbies, discretionary income, etc?  What are key words that describe your brand?  Who are your competitors?  The full picture is created here so we can fully understand who your business needs to serve through your product assortment.

Brand Audit

To have a holistic view of your brand, we conduct a comprehensive brand audit – reviewing your product assortment, sales and inventory reports, website / store merchandising, and current assortment plans.

Brand Research

Once we have a clear picture of your brand from your company’s perspective, we conduct research to understand the perception of your brand from the customer’s perspective.  This can include focus groups, surveys, article research, and customer reviews.

launch a product

02  Sales Analysis

Product Attributing

A critical part of analyzing your sales is establishing attributes for your assortment: Style, Trends, Price bands, Design Details, Fabrics, Textures, Colors, Finishes, Sleeve Length, and the list continues.  The more attributes your products have, the deeper you can dig into their selling and the smarter your decisions become.  We will help you establish attributes for all of your past, current, and future products.

Sales Reporting

Having an in-depth understanding of your sales strategy and sales reporting is critical to ensuring you make purposeful decisions in your business.  You must understand what metrics to look at and when, how to spot a positive or negative trend in your sales and action to it, and how to create new streams of sales revenue.  If you are needing more than what your current sales reports are providing, we will make new reports for you that pull in all data needed to make strategic decisions.

Merchandise Planning

Before you purchase merchandise or materials, you must have a financial plan and inventory strategy in place.  This involves establishing your sales and gross margin plan by year / month / week, for every item currently in your line and future items you want to bring in. Without this plan, you will not know how much inventory you need to purchase and sell to hit your goals, and will not be able to make revenue-driven decisions.

Promotional & Markdown Merchandise Management

Although we use strong sales data and industry research to make all decisions, there will always inevitably be some “misses” with some products which forces us to promote the items at a lower price or mark them down as clearance.  These misses could be for various reasons – quality issues, trend dying out, item competing against a similar item in your line, etc.  In any promotional merchandise situation, the end goal is to preserve as much margin as possible.  We carefully analyze each slow selling item to understand the cause, and assign a promotional price to the item and evaluating the margin impact.  We then roll up all of the items to understand the total margin impact, and ensure that we do not exceed your margin plan that you set for that time period.

set styling by Atlanta Stylist, The Affinity Group International

03 Process Mapping

Product Lifecycle Management

Businesses with an in-house design team require full product lifecycle management, from design to sample making to technical fittings, to landing the products in their warehouse.  We consult with you on what’s trending in your industry, the “must haves” for your new collection, and provide feedback on design concepts and samples.  We will even accompany you to the factories to see the samples in person.

Formalizing the Design / Buying Process

The only way to ensure that your team is working efficiently is to formalize your design + development process (or buying process if you’re a retailer).  Every single step of the process needs to be documented across all departments, with an approximate time duration and the stakeholder defined for each step.

Retail Consultant pulling color swatches

04 Innovative Sourcing

Assortment Optimization

We will work with you to ensure you have the right product mix to hit your sales goals, that your merchandise is priced right, and that your shop is optimized for sales.  For brands, that involves ensuring that you are developing updates to your best sellers, and chasing emerging trends.  For e-commerce stores, that involves ensuring that the taxonomy of the site allows for a seamless shopping experience.  For retailers, this involves ensuring your store is merchandised in a way that allows for ease of shopping.

Product Sourcing

Finding the perfect products for your shop is not an easy feat.  We will help you source products that fit your target clientele’s desires, consult with you on negotiating terms with the vendors, make sure that you’re purchasing enough items to hit your sales plans. Every merchandise purchase you make should be based on your sales history and where the industry is trending.  We even accompany you to a trade show to help you navigate and to help execute our strategic plan.

Localization

Retail is being driven by small businesses (98% of retail in fact).  If you don’t have a local assortment strategy for your store, you are missing out on a huge opportunity.  We will source indie brands that your target customers would love, from within and outside of the United States.  We will also help onboard them as a vendor and all of their items into your systems.

runway show

Execute your vision today.  Schedule a consultation.

Your Product Strategy Consulting Services Include:

Dedicated Retail Consultant

You will have a Retail Expert executing your merchandising strategy who is readily available to you via email, phone, and text

Comprehensive Brand Audit

We will evaluate the current state of your business at a high level, before digging into the details to create our merchandising plan

Financial and Sku Planning

We will analyze your annual product sales plan to ensure it is optimized for maximum sales + profitability

Innovative Product Assortment Strategy

We will create and execute your strategic merchandising plan for curating products your clients crave - from a corporate retail perspective

Product Lifecycle Management

We will enhance your product design and development timeline, establishing defined design themes, targets, and milestones for every collection release

Product Sourcing + Buying Trip

Your Retail Consultant will design an itinerary with our travel partner, and together you will spend 3+ days sourcing products (Travel outside the U.S. available)

Financing is Extended to Our Clients through Behalf and National Corporate Credit

Driving Results For Retailers + Brands Worldwide

Global Retail Consultant, DeAnna McIntosh, at the world’s third largest mall Central World in Bangkok, Thailand doing trend research.

“DeAnna is a hard and thoughtful worker who loves diving into data fearlessly. She is design savvy, fun to work with, and not afraid to bring new ideas and insights to the table. At Capital, she helped us establish data-informed product development targets to make sure that we were bringing the right mix of products to our next launch. She also explored trends in the industry, reaching out to customers and travelling to trade markets to keep the pulse of styles and designs that are relevant to our company. Her varied work experiences and blend of fashion / style interest with data / numbers insights makes her a unique asset to any team, and I would definitely work with her again!”

Liz Townsend, Marketing Director, Capital Lighting Fixture Company
high point market display

You know you want to work with us.  The feeling is mutual.

Interested in group training versus working intimately with us one-on-one?

Introducing, Retailing Evolved: a platform with the tools and guidance you need to start and grow your small retail business alongside other entrepreneurs.

Our ‘Emerge + Excel’ program is a quarterly group training program designed to equip brands and boutiques with merchandising strategies to drive their growth to 6 figures

Our ‘Retail + E-commerce Dominance Mastermind’ is an annual group training program designed to equip brands and boutiques with the structure + processes needed to continue growing sustainably after hitting 6 figures

clothing rack abstract, launch a product, start a boutique