World Footwear


Insufficient demand is the main difficulty faced by the footwear industry

Insufficient demand is the main difficulty faced by the footwear industry
We have asked the World Footwear' experts panel, gathering specialists from all over the world, about the main difficulties currently faced by the footwear companies all over the world. Insufficient demand was choosen by half of the respondents
As in the previous edition of this survey, published last year, insufficient demand, both in international markets and at home, continues to be at the top of the difficulties faced by the footwear business, being mentioned by half of our experts (down from 57% and 55% in the previous edition).

References to financial difficulties increased slightly, from 42% in the previous edition to 44% now, and continue to be the third most relevant source of difficulties.

Concern with the cost of merchandise or raw materials is growing, being mentioned by 41% of the experts, more 17 percentage points than in the previous edition. On the contrary, references to problems associated with “competition in international markets” almost have not changed (from 22% to 23%), and those related to competition in the domestic market actually constitute less of a concern in the current period (less 5 percentage points in comparison to the answers in the previous edition).

Legal or administrative obstacles to international trade are relatively more important now (10%) than in the previous edition of this survey, which can be associated with new lockdowns implemented after the Christmas holidays. Finally, issues associated with climate, technological problems and taxes seem comparatively less preponderant than other difficulties.

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About the Survey
Executive Summary
Business Context
Types of Footwear
Possible Explanations
Retail Channels
Footwear Consumption in the US not keeping pace with the rest of the World
Consumption Expectations
The Importance of Different B2B Marketing Tools
Priorities for Post-COVID Investment

About the Business Conditions Survey

In 2019 the World Footwear has created the World Footwear' experts panel and is now conducting a Business Conditions Survey every semester. The objective of the World Footwear Experts Panel Survey is to collect information regarding the current business conditions within the worldwide footwear markets and then to redistribute such information in a way it will provide an accurate overview of the situation of the global footwear industry.

The fourth edition of this online survey was conducted during the month of March 2021. We have obtained 141 valid answers from 42 countries, 52% coming from Europe, 21% from Asia, 14% and 8% from North and South America, respectively, and 5% from Africa. More than one third (35%) of the respondents are involved in footwear manufacturing (manufacturers), 20% in footwear trade and distribution (traders) and 45% in other footwear-related activities such as trade associations, consultancy, journalism, etc. (others).

Image credits: Kin Li on Unsplash