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It’s a popular belief that the fashion industry has minimal career scope. It comes down to either fashion design or being a model. That’s not true at all! Merchandising is one of the fascinating job possibilities in the industry. If merchandising interests you, you’re at the right place! The possibilities and growth in merchandising are promising. Here you will learn the functions of merchandising, its importance, its benefits and the fashion merchandising courses you can take to start your career. But first, the most basic question must be answered: What is merchandising?

Read on to get a clear picture of why getting a career in merchandising is an excellent choice!

Merchandising Definition

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Merchandising, in the simplest terms, is how products are displayed to attract customers. Fashion merchandising is an exciting combination of having a knack for fashion and business.

Fashion merchandising meaning involves business aspects such as product development, packaging, design, fashion shows, displays, directing, campaigns, manufacturing goods, and marketing. Fashion merchandising business examples include retail stores or e-commerce stores selling clothing or footwear.

To maximise the appeal and attract prospective customers, a merchandiser is an expert in organizing the purchasing, selling, and advertising of products for a retail establishment.

You may see a similarity between marketing and merchandising, but they are like bread and butter, they complement each other. The difference between marketing and merchandising is that marketing in fashion primarily focuses on advertising. Merchandising focuses on the entire fashion design process to sales.

The key differences

Merchandisers collaborate closely with buyers, suppliers, sales teams, and product developers to ensure that the company’s products appeal to customers and achieve its sales objectives.

Merchandisers oversee budgets and create sales forecasts while managing product selection and promotion. They must possess excellent organizational skills, attention to detail, and aptitude for data analysis and strategic decision-making.

Understanding customer wants and preferences, examining sales data and market trends and using this knowledge to make strategic decisions about product selection, prices, and promotions are all part of this process. By giving customers a pleasant and enjoyable shopping experience, a merchandiser aims to boost sales and profitability.

Understanding the merchandising process is a must to be a successful fashion and apparel merchandiser. You should have a good grasp of design to create successful product lines. Read here to learn more about merchandising.

Importance of Merchandising

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For the overall success of a business, merchandising plays a crucial role. Merchandising is a tool that gets customers to buy products. However, effective merchandising demands planning and discipline. It enhances profitability, salesfloor productivity and employee performance. The types of merchandising in the fashion industry are:

  • Product Merchandising
  • Retail Merchandising
  • Brand and Fashion Merchandising
  • Visual Merchandising
  • Wholesale Merchandising
  • E-commerce Merchandising

Here are the benefits of merchandising.

  • Customer Appeal: Effective merchandising makes the shopping experience fun, easy and enjoyable. It gives customers a reason to return and spend their money. By creating a pleasing experience, merchandising creates a sense of belonging and gets enhances customer loyalty.
  • Profitability: Retailers can make strategic pricing decisions based on merchandising and increase profitability. One way to do that is to arrange impulse displays at checkout and add-on sales. Good displays also promote self-shopping, and the sales team can focus on a customer that needs help, thereby enhancing profitability.

The functions of fashion merchandising include creating interesting product display designs while carefully integrating the designer’s original style. Additionally, merchandisers follow and review fashion trends and themes, participate in fashion shows, select fabric, colours and styles for various garments, and collaborate with designers to create the ideal design.

How to Get into Merchandising

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Applying for an apparel merchandising course will require the utmost dedication and an eye for detail. You must complete 12th grade with a 40% and above score. This three-year course provides hands-on and technical training in all things fashion.

You will be taught to refine your critical and analytical thinking to meet industry standards in this ever-changing industry. Try tasking a few courses beforehand to kickstart your progress and be a cut above the rest!

Merchandising Career Options

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There are many career opportunities in fashion merchandising after graduating. Here are some common roles you can opt for.

  • Assistant Fashion Buyer: Select and negotiate with suppliers for retail brands and companies. You will need to be up to date on industry trends and identify products that will boost sales, give businesses a competitive edge and reinforce brand voice.
  • Merchandising Manager: They oversee the functions of all retail products. Responsibilities include curating product displays, ensuring the store is aesthetically pleasing and attractive and coordinating activities and workflow of retail employees.
  • Merchandising Consultant: They are in charge of the marketing and sales efforts and implement plans for merchandising according to sales goals. They establish offers that appeal to different target audiences, especially during lagging sales.
  • Marketing Representative – As the name states, they represent and promote the business’s products to the target audience. They aren’t involved in the workflow or product displays. They focus on strategic activities that market a brand or brands to prospective customers.

According to Ambition Box, if you have experience from one to ten years, salaries in India range from 1.2 to 7 lakhs, respectively, with an average annual pay of 3.5 lakhs.


If you have ever pondered over “what is merchandising?” and wanted to know more, here it all is! The apparel industry has a high demand worldwide, and the value of the fashion merchandising role is increasing daily in India. Fashion merchandising has many exciting career prospects. Enrol in BSc. in Fashion and Apparel Design at JD School of Design to learn from updated, well-structured courses to get a well-rounded, holistic learning experience!