A creaking wooden staircase leads to the second floor. Once you’ve reached the top, you’re standing in a cozy room between traditional costume fashions and peasant mobs. The quaint shop "kathrin’s geschenkstadel" kulmbach’s city center specializes in traditional food for young and old alike. And even where it may not be expected at first, it makes itself felt in the form of signs: the winter sale.
In the period after the turn of the year, many shop windows of the retail trade are equipped with such signs, on which "goods reduced" stands or even percentages are shown. The dealers want to get rid of their winter goods, in order to make as soon as possible place for the again arriving spring articles.
"We have to look at getting rid of our things, that’s why we have also reduced", says the owner of kathrin’s geschenkstadel, kathrin herold. "Also due to the ongoing construction sites, the city center is currently emptier than usual", describes the rather quiet shopping situation.
Other retailers notice less. Bianka feulner, employee in the fashion store "privera trend& style" says that january and february are generally quiet months for them in the store, as it is the transitional period to the warm months. "The customers don’t really want the winter clothes anymore, but they can’t wear the spring clothes yet because of the weather. That is why in winter people tend to go "snatch hunting", she says. With the reductions catch "privera trend& style" already after christmas. However, there is no specific demand for certain products.
For some customers, the winter sales no longer play such a major role. "I do look around sometimes, but I don’t stub my toe", tells a customer looking at reduced clothing in front of a store. Another customer, who also likes to take a look at reduced clothes, is especially surprised by the high percentages that are advertised in the store. "It seems to me that the reductions were not so strong in the past", she says.
Time window is enlarged
Until a few years ago, the time frame in which winter sales could take place was regulated by law. From the last monday in january for exactly twelve days – that’s how long the winter goods were available at the discounted price. Since a change in the law in 2004, this has been abolished, the period can now be determined by each store itself. Dealers were also allowed to choose the level of discounts during the year. "With too many discounts in the year one makes oneself the trade however rather kaput", according to sabine koppel, district manager of the upper franconia trade association, which represents the interests of the retail trade.
"Red prices attract customers", says center manager of the fritz shopping center anja curioso naiaretti. Nevertheless, it was again in favor of a regular section of the winter sale. Diana katz, owner of the fashion store katz und katz, also sees it that way. Because by the exact time period was this the customers better prasent, they were more targeted in this period to go shopping.
Online trade also counteracts this. "Online there is always merchandise that is reduced to buy."
The role of the climate
"In the past, the place was always full at this time", werner turk also remembers the times of regulated sales in his store. "Nowadays everything is regulated by the price", says the owner of "herrenmode turk" to consider. But after all, he also has to bring in enough income above the regular price, for example in the christmas business. An early start on reducing goods would not be advantageous there. "You can’t live on discounts alone".
Diana katz says that the climate also plays a major role in the retail trade. Due to the long summer and the unusually warm winter, the demand for warm winter clothing is not as high as in other years. "Down jackets in particular are not in great demand this season", the owner sums up. At the end of december, they therefore began with the reductions. "The climate sometimes throws a spanner in the retailer’s works."
In the men’s fashion store of werner turk the winter sale started only last friday. Especially sweaters had gone over the counter a lot in the last months.He now has winter fashion at half price.