Misuse swimwear manufacturer China of statistics in lingerie
We&'d like to introduce Catherine Clavering swimwear manufacturer China
who runs Kiss Me Deadly as a guest blogger for us today. Enjoy the post and don&'t forget to leave comments below.
On the extremely long wholesale swimwear
list of things I can get really antsy about in the misuse of statistics in lingerie is percentages.
Frequently you will see press releases and news items containing lines such as such as “86% of women are wearing the wrong bra size”, “Suspender belts sales grow by 58%!”. They are also useful when you are looking at vxyvx120 how well advertising converts to sales, your Google analytics, the value of a customer to you, return rates, margins . . . all sorts of things.
So wholesale swimwear this is how you produce a percentage.
To calculate a percentage change:Simply subtract the old value from the new value, then divide by the old value.
Multiply the result by 100 and slap a % sign on it. That&'s your percent change.
For example, to compare your sales of swimsuits July 2013 as compared to July 2012.
So you have a 62% increase in sales. Of course if it was the other way round, you would have a negative number, which means a drop in sales.
To calculate something like sell through or conversion rates, think of them in terms of fractions – 75% is 75/100, or ¾.
So far, so arithmetical. What can possibly go wrong?
Well, percentages without a context can be highly misleading, like all statistics.
Lets go through all the quoted examples to see what problems there can be.
The first theoretical headline, 86% of women are wearing the wrong bra size. this is just a research nightmare. It&'s very unusual for any statistic to be related to all women the world over. The chances of a generic statistic being either rigorously researched are very slim as there are all sorts of things that can cause variation – bias, sampling, how you define the things you are measuring, the list goes on and on. Be wary of anyone asking you to apply a a statistic like this to your own customer base without a full look at how they produced it!
Our second fake headline “Suspender belts sales grow by 58%!” is something you often see in trend articles or puff pieces from brands or stores PR people.
The problem is that it&'s really easy to produce startling figures by simply cherry picking from your data. What&'s the context for these sort of figures? Is this up on last year, up on last month, up on last week? Did they order more in in the first place meaning that last year they had a much more severe limit on how many they could sell? What are they including as a suspender belt, are they including shapewear with detachable garters? It&'s also very, very easy to demonstrate a massive increase in figures when the starting point is very low – for example, we grew 120% between our first year of trading and our second year. But our first year of trading, we only started selling 8 months into it, it was part time and the amount we made that year was pretty tiny. If someone is telling you they have had 200% increase in sales, but won&'t tell you the starting figure, you can wave a sceptical eyebrow because a 200% increase on £100 is not very much – whereas a 20% increase on £100,000 is much more money!
Now for the examples for your own statistics: your (theoretical) increase in swimsuit sales is interesting and useful to know. But you can&'t just look at one statistic to know how you are doing.
In this example you also need to know: did you also sell more bikinis – meaning your swimwear sales are up in general – or are you selling the same amount overall but with a swing towards one piece and away from bikinis?
Was this a one month blip? What is the overall trend on your swimwear? Did you run a promotion or get some press that affect this month – because you need to know what&'s working and if its cost effective!
What about your sell through? Well, this percentage is useful but only in context again – you need two other figures to make the best use of it; how much you made on each bra sold (if you sold them all at full price, that&'s pretty good going, but if they have all been sold on a discount, obviously you&'ve got a problem).
You also need to know the speed at which they sold, because if you sell 75% of a range but it takes 12 months, for many retailers the fixed costs of storing and administrating them has eaten into the margin.
For KMD, we also find that some products don&'t necessarily have a good sell through rate, but having them around brings people into the store and gets us featured in the press, to the extent that it&'s worth having them because they improve sales in other areas. for us, those products are corsets, stockings, and the Garden Pantygirdle!
Catherine Clavering runs Kiss Me Deadly, a vintage inspired lingere brand in the independent sector, based in the UK. She moonlights writing for various blogs including here, the Huffington Post and The Lingerie Addict. You can find more business support from her and her team by joining the KMD wholesale account holders here. There's more to read!Royce & John Lewis join up to raise funds for Against Breast Cancer US Lingerie Giant Sells 5 Millionth Bra 2wenty8 Launches...errrr.......28” Lingerie Esty Lingerie launches 4th lingerie design competition