Kayla Marci

April 8, 2021

The EDITED COVID-19 Retail Dashboard: Monthly market analysis of global trends

The COVID-19 Retail Dashboard is powered by real-time data from the EDITED Market Intelligence Platform to understand the state of each major market.

Businesses will need data as an ally to make the best decisions for their trading category during these uncertain times while being as reactive as possible. So we created an interactive coronavirus retail dashboard for retailers to see the effects of the virus on the market in real-time and how regions are recovering from the pandemic. 

To support retailers with continuous lockdown restrictions in key regions, we’ve compiled a top-level analysis of the effects of COVID-19 on arrivals, discounts and sell outs over the past month.

Key takeaways

• March signified one year since coronavirus was declared a global pandemic by WHO, with retail still reeling from the effects. Arrivals have yet to return to 2019 levels in any region except Italy, which showed the closest alignment to pre-pandemic delivery cadences and discounting strategies.

• All markets discounted a lower proportion of assortments compared to a year ago with a variance between 16% (the UK) and 19% (the US).

• However, discounting depths in Spain and the UK are deeper compared to last year, suggesting they're targeting slow-moving or older stock with concentrated markdowns.

• Despite occasionwear items trickling into assortments, especially in Italy, the loungewear trend is not dead yet. Sweatpants clocked the highest YoY increase in sell outs in Spain at 80%, while sleepwear items continued to resonate with consumers across the US and UK.

Reach out to a Retail Specialist to understand the methodology on how the dashboard was put together. 

US: Sleepwear sell outs surge one year on

March newness remains well below the past two years, clocking in at a 15% YoY decline. Arrivals continue to climb MoM, with a 4% increase in February's numbers.

coronavirus retail

Another trend carried over from February - the average discount depth maintained its downwards trajectory, dropping to 39%. The percentage assortment of discount remained unchanged MoM with 53% of products reduced - a stark contrast compared to a year ago at the height of COVID where 65% of products were discounted.

coronavirus retail

coronavirus retail

One year on from the start of the pandemic and sleepwear still resonates with consumers. Nighties and pajama bottoms eclipsed the number of YoY sell outs by over 70%.

Products with the most sell-out activity YoY

% year-on-year variance outlined
  • Sandals +83%
  • Nighties +79%
  • Pajama bottoms +76%
  • Socks +63%

UK: Despite leading the vaccine race, pandemic shopping habits remain unchanged

UK arrivals show a minimal variance YoY with a 2% increase on 2020, poising the market to outpace last April's arrivals which began to decline in the first wave.

coronavirus retail

2021 is showing a vastly different strategy compared to the discounting implemented when COVID first broke out. Proportions are lower by 16%, while the average discount depth is higher. This suggests British retailers are reducing less stock at a higher markdown to target their offers and clear underperforming or older styles instead of discounting a wide range of goods.

coronavirus retail

coronavirus retail

Contrast to last month's uptick in more formal sell outs, the pendulum has swung back in favor of comfort. For March, bathrobes, nighties and leggings saw the highest increase in sell outs YoY, while shapewear experienced an uptick compared to a challenging 2020.

Products with the most sell-out activity YoY

% year-on-year variance outlined
  • Bathrobes +31%
  • Shapewear +16%
  • Nighties +11%
  • Leggings +10%

Spain: Arrivals sharply drop and sweatpants top sell outs 

Newness plummeted in this market, with arrivals down 34% MoM and YoY, recording the largest variance across analyzed regions.

coronavirus retail
Another region to shake up its discounting strategy one year on. The average discount depth was 37% - 5% higher than 2020. However, a smaller proportion of assortments are marked down with 50% of products compared to a bullish 60% a year ago.

coronavirus retail

coronavirus retail
Spain's plan to trial a four-day working week adds to the longevity of comfort dressing. Sweatpants saw the highest SKU activity with an 80% increase in the number of sell outs YoY.

Products with the most sell-out activity YoY

% year-on-year variance outlined
  • Sweatpants +80%
  • Tech accessories +71%
  • Bodysuits +70%
  • Jumpsuits +67%

Italy: Arrivals rebound and conservative discounting

Though down by a minimal 7% MoM, Italy saw the highest YoY increase in arrivals at 22%. As one of the first regions to feel the impact of the pandemic, one year on shows a closer alignment with 2019 arrivals indicating a return to normalcy with delivery cadences.

Discounts are also following 2019's patterns. The percentage of products discounted has dropped from 52% in 2020 to 43%. The average discount depth is 37% to 5% shallower than last year.

coronavirus retail

coronavirus retail
Despite lockdown measures continuing to be enforced until Apr 30th, consumers are preparing for post-pandemic dressing. Bags, formal accessories and shapewear all experienced a YoY uptick in sell outs. There's still interest in comfort and practicality with sneaker and sweatpants sell outs up 70% and 63% YoY, respectively.

Products with the most sell-out activity YoY

% year-on-year variance outlined
  • Bags +81%
  • Formal accessories +77%
  • Sneakers +70%
  • Shapewear +63% 

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