M&S broadens kidswear focus amid clothing turnaround

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M&S broadens kidswear focus amid clothing turnaround
M&S's kidswear range will reduce reliance on formal wear & focus on casual clothing, and the Autograph sub-brand will be removed.
// M&S changes kidswear product range to become a little less “special occasion” and more everyday style
// Part M&S’s plan to broaden its appeal to family customers and grow market share in kidswear
// M&S is also in the midst of trying to turnaround its clothing department

M&S is set to change its kidswear range to become a little less “special occasion” and more everyday style, as it seeks to broaden its appeal and grow market share.

The retailer said the change is rooted in market shifts across all clothing areas and customer insight – with children telling M&S that “being comfy” is their number one clothing requirement.

As part of the changes, M&S is looking to reduce reliance on formal wear for children and focus on casual clothing.


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The retailer has also removed its sub-brand Autograph from kidswear.

Originally introduced in 2007, Autograph focused on a more formal style of product in premium fabrics – but in recent years its sales have declined.

M&S Kidswear is now buying fewer formal “party” dresses and suits are available exclusively in bigger stores and online, although the amount of options available is halved.

Alongside this, M&S said casual wear options have “substantially” increased.

The retailer also announced that its 3-for-2 bundle will now be available year-round, and is supported by its first ever window marketing campaign.

In addition, M&S increased the items in the 3-for-2 bundle offer from 60 to nearly 200.

Meanwhile, from spring M&S will introduce more focused age breaks into its kids’ clothing, allowing a more tailored offer for baby, younger kids and older kids.

The retailer added that all items across M&S Kids designed to be “hand me down quality”, with robust testing to ensure items can be washed at 30 degrees and tumble dried.

In addition, the cotton items are made from 100 per cent more sustainably sourced cotton.

“M&S Kids is changing to broaden its appeal to more family shoppers,” M&S kidswear director Jill Stanton said.

“We know we have parents shopping schoolwear, with one in four kids wearing an M&S uniform, but our wider kids offer has been a bit too formal and not for everyday fun.

“Our new range is about being more playful – with fantastic fun prints, vibrant colours and the hard-wearing features that make them fit for play time and fit to last.”

The changes to M&S’s kidwear department comes as the heritage retailer pushes on with its transformation scheme to bring its clothing & home division back to profitability.

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