Competitive Environment

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CASE #12
The Competitive Environment in the 18-22-Year-Old-Apparel-Market

Difference in A&F΄s and AE΄s retail strategies

To start with, both A&F and AE share the same target market and offer similar merchandise. However, there are some differences in their retailer strategies that make this fashion stores stay competitive. Both retailers target mostly teenagers, and offer casual wear for young men, women and kids accompanied with accessories, outerwear, footwear and sweaters... As a difference, AE offers dorm wear and intimate apparel. In addition, A&F goods are more expensive and tend to target higher class teenagers while AE prices are ¨a little cheaper.¨ For this reason, A&F also runs Hollister Co. Stores which can compete on the basis of lower prices. Moreover, AE has a competitive advantage in the location part of the retail mix, meaning that the number of stores of AE is grater compared to A&F.

Brand Images

As previously mentioned, A&F merchandises are more expensive compare to AE offerings. Therefore, the image brand of A&F emphasizes higher class teens and younger adults. Nevertheless, A&F has a more effective emotional appraisal as one can realize from Jenifer Shaffer thinking ¨It’s like I really had to have Abercrombie.¨ In addition, as AE is cheaper compare to its competitor the image of such brand is less attractive and is associated with phrase ¨a little cheaper.¨ However, both brands are seen as trendy and sexy.

Other Competitors

To continue, other stores that target same customers and have similar offerings as A&F and AE are Gap and J Crew. Gap has differentiated itself on the level of prices by segmenting its offerings on the bases of discount, middle and high prices. Therefore, Gap targets a greater group of customers by operating Old Navy (low price), Gap (mid price) and Banana Republic (high-end price) and presents a greater number of goods for people of different incomes. Furthermore, J Crew has also collections of

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