With the recent relaxation of the one-child policy in China, the Chinese family structure is subject to a change. With expected increase number of children in China, children’s apparel’s market is expected to future grow. As the disposable income among Chinese parents increase, the percentage of that income spent on children’s apparel is also expected to grow. Thus, children’s apparel’s brands need to attract parents to make purchases and stand out among competing brands.
Product Safety and Clothing Material are the Main Concerns in the Decision Making of Purchasing Children’s Apparels
Through a marketing survey over 70% of the parents noted that product safety is their main concern. Over 65% favor soft and comfortable fabrics such as cotton as their favorite clothing material. Of this, females generally consider clothing material as a key consideration when purchasing children’s apparel compared to under 50% of males who consider clothing material as a key consideration. Brand recognition is a popular consideration among parents aged 41 to 50 years old, over 40% consider brand recognition a key factor when they make a purchase on children’s apparel compared to under 30% between the ages 21 to 30 years old parents. This is understandable as parents above 40 years of age will general have teenage children and some of which are not growing as fast as younger kids in terms of height and weight gain. Thus, parents can spend more and buy more recognized brand’s clothing that will last their children for a longer period of time.
Simply and Leisurely Styles are Preferred by Chinese Parents
According to a market survey, simply and leisurely is the most popular style when choosing children’s apparel. Around 80% of the parents consider this kind of style first when making a decision on purchasing clothing for their children. This is mainly due to the fact that these styles are generally easy for children to put on by themselves and they are more comfortable when kids are running around and playing. Under 50% of the parents choose more stylish designs and around 40% of the parent favor sportswear.
Spending Pattern and Decision Makers in Purchasing Children’s Apparel in China
Around half of the respondents spend ￥101- 300 Yuan per transaction, parents in the 41-50 age group usually spend more in each transaction in comparison to the other age group parents. This corresponding to the fact that they prefer “brand recognition” products and the price of those are generally higher. More than 60% of these parents spend more than ￥300 Yuan per transaction compared with under 40% in younger age group parents.
When it comes to making the decision about the purchase, around 70% of the parents make the decision with their children. Thus, it is important to make products that stand out to both parents and children. For infant and toddler apparel, parents play a much more important role in deciding the clothing that they are going to buy for their children.
Popular Design Trends in China: Grown-up Looks, Parent-Child Looks, and Gift-Boxes
Chinese parents are increasingly looking for stylish and fashionable designs. Thus in order to meet this demand, an increasing number of brands is offering children’s apparels in “grown-up” designs that are similar to the styles of adult clothing. However, some features are deemed as unsuitable or unsafe among children’s wear. For example, in winter jackets, high neck designs can often hurt children with shorter necks up on zipping closures. Others such as crystals, sequins designs are also considered not suitable. For parents, safe and comfortable designs are still their priority. The “Parent-Child” looks in gaining attention by Chinese parents. Only a few brands in China offer this kind of design and of those who offer, many are either sportswear or sweatshirts. Many market experts think that this is a relatively untapped market that has huge development potential in China. Another area that brands should focus more on is the gift market. Most people would choose famous brands when buying children’s wear, especially baby’s clothes, as gifts, largely because they are more presentable and deemed more acceptable.
Many Adult Apparels Brands Starts to Offer Children’s Apparel
Many brands that originally focuses on adult apparel or just teen’s apparel is widening their segment by offer children’s apparel. Brands such as Zara, GAP, and other sportswear brand are offering kids line to follow the demand. Many brands also provide one-stop services to families that shop there. For instance, Zara’s physical store combines women’s apparels, men’s apparels and kid’s apparels along with homewares, etc. At the same time, some children’s apparel retailers have expanded their business scope and transforming it from just a retailer to a service provider, offering temporary babysitting, kid’s play areas, etc., so that parents can focus on shopping and potentially keep customers to stay in the shop for a longer period of time to increase their probability of making a purchase.
How does Daxue Consulting has helped its client?
Daxue Consulting has helped its clients in the apparel industry to develop specific marketing approaches in order to drive value in the client’s product portfolios. Daxue has helped the client to weigh potential changes to their marketing mix in China, by conducting a desk research and by working on the adaptation of the brands name, naming for brand recognition, is indeed crucial for a brand that just enter China’s market. Indeed, developing relevant and distinctive brand strategies are driving higher sales and stable profits.
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