What is Export Merchandising

Export Merchandising can be termed as the process of offering retail products and goods to sell in foreign market. In order to increase profit and growth many companies try to find better ways to enter foreign consumer market through export merchandising.

Export Merchandising in the apparel industry can be termed as the activities and planning that is involved from the buyer communication to order receiving and till the shipment or execution of any order.

Export merchandising can also be defined as the method/process of offering Execution of order by fulfilling the following factors (Six Rights):

  • Right Merchandise
  • Right Place
  • Right Time
  • Right Quantity
  • Right Price
  • Right Promotion

Responsibilities of Export Merchandiser

 

Export merchandiser is responsible for the follow up of all the activities from communication till the order execution in accordance with customer requirements.

The certain responsibilities of an export merchandiser are:

1- Communication:

The first & foremost responsibility of an export merchandiser is communication. Export merchandiser communicates with the customer throughout the order execution process.

2- Planning & Control

An important function of merchandiser and product managing is planning and maintaining control. These actions involve all departments of an apparel industry. Merchandising is responsible for critical planning and control functions, such as the following:

  • The merchandiser plays a vital role in strategic planning (identifying where and how a company’s resources should be allocated) along with marketing, sales, production, finance, and administration.
  • The merchandiser must ensure timely line development in accordance with market needs and the company’s capacities and capabilities. This has become even more critical with the tremendous increase in speed to market and the shortening of times in the fashion life cycle.
  • The merchandiser must integrate company functions within the total supply chain, which is very complex thanks to the global sourcing of both raw materials and finished products and the rising importance of corporate social responsibility.
  • In larger companies, the merchandiser coordinates intra-company activities with other departments. The tools used to accomplish planning and control including the following:

3- Costing:

Costing for new products is a most important & critical responsibility of export merchandiser.  It cannot be done without a thorough understanding of the manufacturing process and a command of math. “Designers are usually not focused on price and statistics. Merchandisers have to apply the business sense to the line. This is a numbers game. This really is a numbers game coming down to pricing and to volume.” Facility with numbers is more important than ever in today’s competitive, fast-paced speed to market.

Merchandisers must be capable of calculating the cost of producing each garment and determining selling prices. They work hand in hand with the production team to determine an estimated cost for each garment. The merchandising team ensures that we are offering an assortment of product that meets the needs of the business and makes sense to our customer. The pricing strategy is only able to be done realistically and smartly if done with an educated understanding of what each garment costs.

5- Sourcing:

Depending on the size and departmentalized structure of an apparel company, sourcing may be the sole responsibility of merchandising, an independent senior level management function, or a shared responsibility. Whichever the case, the merchandiser must understand the complexities of domestic and international sourcing. He should be aware of all the perks of sourcing.

6- Material Management:

Raw materials, including fabric, findings, and trim, can represent one-third to onehalf the total cost of a garment. The rapid growth of new developments in fibers, yarns, and fabrics has further complicated the materials management function, which is a critical concern for many merchandisers.

Accurate bills of materials (BOM), which provide detailed listings of material requirements for each style; effective style status reports, showing sales versus forecasts, authorized fabric purchases and receipts, and authorized production for each style; master production plans, showing, by style, the fabric needs by time period per available factory production capacity; and accurate raw materials and finished goods inventory reports are vital merchandising tools.

7- Follow up:

Another important responsibility of an export merchandiser is take care of the process and production follow up to ensure that everything is going on as per requirements of customer.

Other responsibilities of an export merchandiser include

  • Controlling/Monitoring
  • Coordination/Cooperation
  • Decision Making
  • Negotiation
  • Forecasting
  • Technical Knowledge
  • Others like education, experience, situational management, evaluation.

What is Retail Merchandising?

Retail merchandising contains the activities that are related to the direct selling of services or products to the consumers or users.

 

Functions of Retail Merchandising
  • Communication (Consumer to Manufacturing & Vice Versa).
  • Create Demands
  • Buying / Sourcing
  • Assemble goods from different suppliers & Whole sellers.
  • Keep ready stocks and monitor stocks
  • Undertake sales promotion activities
There are certain other types of merchandising including visual  merchandising, digital merchandising. Click here to read more about merchandising and types of merchandising.