What’s happening to the IT Bag? According to some research, focused on the US market, it seems they are losing their charm and their force of attraction. Stars and stripes consumers, in fact, would seem to consider today a bag something “nice to have”, but “not essential”. An evaluation that, instead, is reversed considering another accessory. Yes, we are talking about it: the sneaker, which is cannibalising the market not only for footwear, but for luxury too.
20% less in three years
Research firm NPD Group explains that sales of women’s handbags and clutches in the United States fell by more than 20% in the first eight months of 2019, compared to the same period in 2016. “This is not a false step, it’s a big change” wrote Beth Goldstein, NPD analyst for the accessories and footwear sector. A figure that confirms what had emerged in Piper Jaffray survey on the purchasing behaviour of US adolescents, namely that their spending for handbags has fallen to the lowest point ever in the 18 years in which the survey took place.
The bags’ decline stems from many factors. New buying priorities have emerged and, in the fashion world, athleisure clothes and accessories are preferred. Therefore: sneakers. But not only: today, young women prefer a backpack to the “traditional” bag. NPD data found that sales of women’s backpacks in the US grew by 12% in the same period in which sales of bags have fallen. Furthermore: the bag is no longer considered a status symbol, as it used to be in the past. Today a pair of sneakers (luxury ones or otherwise) are considered more distinctive than a bag. According to NPD, US consumers are looking for more than just a bag. They want “solutions”.