The value of the UK fashion market could fall by £350m over the next 12 months as shoppers limit their spending sprees.
That would equate to 1% of its total value.
The new projections from Kantar Worldpanel are based on the fashion market’s value declining 0.4% in the year to June 3 despite shopper numbers increasing 228,000.
The year marked the eighth consecutive period of flat or negative growth. The last time the British fashion market grew for longer than one month was two years ago, in June 2016.
Kantar Worldpanel consumer insight director Glen Tooke said: “Despite the current challenges, customers are starting to return to the fashion market. However, shopping frequency is down by one trip per year, which makes a significant difference across the whole population. Turning this around will be the next big test for retailers.”
The value of full-price clothing sales fell £443m over the past year while the number of items sold declined by one million and only comprised two-thirds of total spend.
Discounted clothing sales grew £303m in the same period but the number of items sold shrank by 31 million items.
Tooke added: “For too long, shoppers have been trained to wait until the sales start, meaning that the heavy discounting favoured by many high street retailers still isn’t having the desired effect in terms of driving spend or footfall.
“The days of ‘put it in the store and they will buy it’ are long gone. Shoppers today are buying in the moment and retailers have to be much more flexible and fleet of foot to accommodate this.
“The current hot weather is a perfect example. The moment is now, and when the sun disappears next week it will have passed, and those are sales that the retailers can never get back.”