Marks & Spencer has announced changes to its clothing range for children, shifting the focus from “special occasion” to “everyday style” as part of a broader plan to appeal to “busy family customers” and grow market share.
The transformation comes as the British retailer notices changes in buying behaviour across its childrenswear range with core casual products such as t-shirts and leggings “backed with bigger buys and bought with confidence.” An example of such changes can be seen in children’s leggings, where sales have increased 20-fold, with the retailer now selling 25,000 pairs a month.
The change also means the removal of sub-brand Autograph’s children’s collection (introduced in 2007), which is known for formal style and quality fabrics. Going forward M&S Kids is stocking fewer formal party dresses, and suits are available exclusively in bigger stores and online, with the amount of options available halved.
Jill Stanton, Director of Kidswear at Mark & Spencer, said: “M&S Kids is changing to broaden its appeal to more family shoppers. We know we have parents shopping school-wear, 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.”