Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a account? Log In

Five Apparel Retailers to Watch Ahead of the Holidays

Bracha Arnold
October 10, 2022
Five Apparel Retailers to Watch Ahead of the Holidays

The brick-and-mortar apparel category has faced a unique set of challenges. Two years of a pandemic drastically changed the nature of in-person shopping and gave way to the most significant consumer price index jump in 40 years. Still, the segment had plenty of bright spots – including the five apparel brands featured here.

The Shoes Make The Sector

As previously explored, the shoe category has performed impressively over the past few years, and this continues to be true, especially for one of the fastest-growing chains identified.

Boot Barn, a Western-themed chain that sells both workwear and leisure wear, saw significant growth throughout the past few years, and it doesn't seem to be slowing down. Visits were up every month since the beginning of 2022, with 7.5% more visitors in August 2022 than in the same period in 2021. The chain has also successfully avoided cannibalization and kept its visits per venue numbers elevated while expanding its store count, with September visits per venue up 2.9% year-over-year (YoY). 

Boot Barn has cemented its success by tapping into a traditionally underserved market, establishing itself as not just a destination for cowboy boots but as a Western-themed lifestyle retailer. With Western-style fashions increasing in popularity, the chain's expansion from the Southwest and West Coast into the Midwest is coming at a great time. 

Continued Success for Luxury Department Stores

While many department stores have lagged behind their pre-pandemic visits, luxury retailers have seen elevated visits in recent months. The resurgence of weddings and events may be helping fuel visits to luxury department store Saks Fifth Avenue

And Sak’s combination of innovative brand partnerships and its focus on customer experience seems to be working, with August and September of 2022 seeing 13.0% and 1.5% more visits to Saks stores than in 2019. And although YoY visits fell slightly beginning in June 2022, the drop should be placed in the context of 2021's post-lockdown visit surges. The strength of this department store suggests that its customer base may be less affected by inflation and more likely to visit Saks for a wardrobe refresh.

The Thrill of The Bargain Hunt

While Saks Fifth Avenue appeals to a luxury-oriented clientele, Goodwill is a bargain hunter's dream. The company is an employment-placement program that also sells secondhand clothing, and this combination of activism and affordability makes it a popular choice for many – especially in times of strained consumer budgets. 

Recent foot traffic data indicates that Goodwill may be benefitting from apparel consumers’ trading down behavior. Between October 2021 and February 2022, YoY visits increased for both Goodwill and the wider apparel category, with overall apparel YoY foot traffic even exceeding Goodwill YoY visits in November 2021. But since March 2022, the shock of inflation and rising gas prices may be leading consumers to rethink new clothing purchases, which led to a drop in YoY visits to the wider apparel category – while YoY visits to Goodwill remain positive. The thrift shop saw its September visits up 7.5% YoY, while the overall apparel sector was down 8.0%. 

Suiting Up

While Goodwill carries apparel for the whole family, Men's Wearhouse focuses on all things men's fashion, an often-overlooked retail segment. Its parent company, Tailored Brands, saw a tumultuous few years, marked by its bankruptcy announcement in 2020, but recently upgraded its standing to a "positive outlook" by the S&P.

Men’s Wearhouse’s foot traffic numbers provide reason for optimism. Visits in April 2022 exceeded 2019 by an impressive 34.2%, and September saw 17.9% growth compared to the same period three years ago, perhaps a result of pent-up demand and postponed weddings. And the Yo3Y increase is even more impressive given that Men’s Wearhouse is now operating with significantly fewer stores – the chain went from 720 locations in 2019 to 634 in 2022, successfully rightsizing in a challenging economic climate. As a result, the brand’s Yo3Y visits per venue growth is outpacing the overall visits increase, with September visits per venue up 32.3% relative to September 2019, meaning that each remaining store is pulling in significantly more customers.

Outdoor Voices Moving Offline

Unlike the other four companies featured here, Outdoor Voices got its start as an online-only DTC company, before opening its first brick-and-mortar store in Austin, TX in 2014. This buzzy, TikTok-viral company is most known for its laid-back approach to athleisure, appealing to a broad range of people. The company now operates 14 stores nationwide, with a Minneapolis and a Philadelphia location on the way. Outdoor Voices has also invested heavily in omnichannel technology to help boost sales both in and out of stores, focusing on BOPIS (buy online, pick up in-store) and same-day delivery. 

And despite reportedly contemplating a sale as recession concerns intensify, the brand’s foot traffic has gone up when compared to the beginning of the year, with September visits up 63.4% relative to January 2022. 

It's no secret that the past few years have challenged the apparel sector. Still, there are plenty of bright spots, companies successfully rallying in these challenging times, and room for optimism in the months ahead. 

For more data-driven insights, visit

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Text Link
Text Link
Boot Barn
Text Link
Saks Fifth Avenue
The Promise of Luxury Apparel
Catching Up With Ulta Beauty & Gap Brands
Ollie’s Bargain Outlet and Five Below: Q1 2024 Treasure Troves
CAVA Still Going Strong
Driving Success: Auto Parts Chains in 2024
Checking in With DICK’S Sporting Goods
Mother’s Day Shopping and Dining Trends Mall Index: April 2024 Recap – Retail Resilience Heading into Spring
Dollar Stores Still Gaining Momentum
Off-Price Apparel Chains After Q1 2024: Demographics in the Balance
Walmart, Target, and Wholesale Clubs Continue to Thrive
Home Improvement and Decor Check In Office Index: April 2024 Recap – Recovery Continues
Movie Theaters in Q1 2024: A Preview of Coming Attractions?
Let’s Get Physical: Fitness In 2024
Where Are Workers Returning to Office in 2024?
2024 Wins: Sweetgreen & First Watch on the Rise
A Full-Service Turnaround: Bloomin’, Dine, and Texas Roadhouse
Wendy’s and Denny’s: Breakfast and Late Night Dining Drives Success
Coffee Chains: Q1 2024 Update and What’s Changed Since COVID
Checking in with RBI and YUM!
Chipotle & McDonald's Serving Up Success
Wingstop & Shake Shack Continue Growing Their Reach 
Strong Start for Sprouts in 2024
Crocs’ Footwear Fairytale
Who Attends NCAA Final Four Events?
Eclipse Fever: How Did the (Retail and Hospitality) Stars Align?
Exploring Albertsons Companies’ Grocery Growth Mall Index: March 2024 Recap – Malls Rise Again Office Index: March 2024 Recap
Florida Spring Break Break-Up? Travelers Still Love Florida!
Provo-Orem and Ogden-Clearfield Emerging As Utah Hotspots 
Three Formulas for Experiential Retail in 2024
Aldi & Lidl Making The Cut
Texas Suburbs on the Rise
Exploring Luxury Hotel Brands’ Guest Segmentation
The St. Patrick’s Day Effect
How Can JOANN Make a Comeback?
Panera Bread Well Positioned for Possible IPO
Who Will Benefit From Family Dollar’s Downsizing?
Dave & Buster’s and Main Event Entertainment: Food and Fun for Everyone
Darden Brands: Location Analytics and Consumer Behavior
Nike and lululemon: a Strong 2023, Sprinting into 2024
Where Is Retail and Dining Foot Traffic Thriving in Early 2024? White Paper Recap – February 2024
Three Retail & Dining Chains That May Surprise in 2024
Specialty Discount Chains Rock Retail Therapy Mall Index: February 2024 Office Index: February 2024 Recap
Ulta Beauty Continues To Shine
First Watch Sails Into 2024
Hibbett Sports and DICK’S Sporting Goods: A Psychographic Analysis
Checking in With Discount & Dollar Stores
Peeking Behind The Curtain: Movie Theaters in 2023 and Beyond
Diving Into Brick-and-Mortar Eyewear
Getting Into Gear: Exploring The Auto Part Industry
Recapping Valentine’s Day 2024 Foot Traffic Trends
Fitness: A Strong Start to 2024
Dutch Bros. Continues To Percolate Visits
Super Bowl 2024:’s Postgame Foot Traffic Analysis
CAVA & sweetgreen Are On the Rise
Hats Off For Off-Price
Who Is Shopping at Malls?
Drilling Down Into Home Improvement
Walmart, Target, Costco & Superstore Space 2023 Recap
Catching Up With Shake Shack and Wingstop
Something To Chew On: Demographic Shifts at Steakhouse Chains Office Index: Looking Back at 2023
Recapping RBI & Yum! Brands’ 2023 Foot Traffic Performance White Paper Recap – January 2024
Who Shops at Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters?
Three Taco Chains to Watch in 2024
Starbucks and Dunkin’: 2023 in Four Data Points
Who Visits CVS and Walgreens?
Fashionably Frugal: Apparel in 2023
Catching Up With Fast Food
The Grocery Sector in 2023: An End-of-Year Recap
3 Mall & Shopping Center Trends for 2024
Bakery Chains Rising To The Top and Esri Partner to Deliver Geospatial Analytics
Tampa Tourism Trends
Going For The Green: The Changing Dynamics Of Country Clubs
Christmas Day Dining Recap
Major Urban Shopping Districts – Holiday Season Recap Office Index: December 2023 Recap
Recapping the 2023 Holiday Shopping Season White Paper Recap – December 2023
7 Retail & Dining Segments to Watch in 2024
Diving Into Holiday Season Favorites
Super Saturday and Christmas Eve Eve: A Winning Combination
3 Budget Grocery Chains Finishing 2023 On a High Note
Making It In America: International Chicken Chains Bring The Heat
Domestic Tourism at a Glance: A Q3 2023 Roundup
Five Pizza Chains On The Rise
Jewelry Brands Taking Advantage of the DTC Opportunity
Secondhand News: Kids' Thrift Shops
Recapping 2023’s Dining M&As
MetLife Stadium Kicks Off Football Season Office Index: November 2023 Recap
Small Coffee Chains Brewing Big Success