INTRODUCTION

Byline:

Women are switching the channels in which they have traditionally shopped. Loyalties based on expectations of value that were often taken for granted are giving way to more stringent criteria for selecting where to buy. Accordingly, consumers are purchasing from various store types, depending on which best fulfill their specific wants and needs.
This special section reports on the shifting consumer purchasing patterns of intimate apparel and hosiery across the dominant retail channels, between 1989 and 1994. It also tracks the changing age and income of the customer by channel, their pattern of purchasing national brands or private label, and at sale or regular prices.
Finally, some of the reasons for this phenomena will be addressed, as well as the strategic implications for both retailers and manufacturers, followed by some ideas on how to cope.
The purpose of this report is to provide readers with greater insight into the cross-shopping issue, as part of WWD’s ongoing Critical Issues series.
The cross-shopping behavior in other women’s apparel categories will be examined in a future edition of WWD, including a final analysis of the cross-purchasing behavior through all channels.
The NPD Group Inc., Port Washington, N.Y., provided the statistical data for the cross-purchasing analysis.