LIM College Developing Slimmer Product Plan Discussion


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Submit your well-developed Product Plan in a Word doc. of at least two (2) pages in length, in Times New Roman font, and double-spaced.

Your Product Plan should be a clear and thorough description of your product line and/or service. It should include any unique and special aspects of the product / service. Also, be sure to include your merchandise assortment.

Please refer to the following:

Merchandising/Product Plan (see Chapters 2, 4, and 10)

Merchandising/Product Plan

Merchandise/Product Description

RealWomen, Inc., will carry contemporary apparel for women sized 11/12 to 19/20 who desire fashion at affordable prices. The merchandise assortment will consist of clothing and accessories suitable for business, university, and casual activities. The size range, current fashion styling from new vendors, and moderate prices are keys to differentiating the product lines from those of competitors.

Unique Characteristics

The size range of 11/12 to 19/20, the contemporary fashion looks, the exclusive vendors in the city, and the moderate price points provide a high level of unique characteristics to the merchandise assortment.

Proposed Lines

RealWomen, Inc., will carry six primary product lines, five secondary product lines, and an assortment of accessories. The specific vendors are listed in the merchandise assortment section, to follow. These vendors have three characteristics in common: availability of sizes 11/12 to 19/20, forward designs representing current fashion trends, and moderate price points. Each vendor, however, provides a different look or type of apparel and accessories, such as casual sportswear, daytime dresses, related business wear separates, and denim bottoms. The range of vendors provides a breadth of selection for the target market, while focusing on the age range, price acceptance, and fashion sense of the designated consumer.

Proprietary Aspects

Initially, RealWomen, Inc., will carry lines designed and produced by national vendors. With the growth of the business, the owner plans to develop private label lines that will provide complete exclusivity for the customers of RealWomen, Inc. The private label lines will be manufactured by an apparel producer, yet carry the RealWomen, Inc., label, which will be copyrighted and registered.

Merchandise Assortment

The merchandise classification breakdown will be as follows:


Career wear


Tops, bottoms, skirts, pants, and jackets



Tops, pants, and skirts



Career and casual



Tops and bottoms



Jeans and skirts




Jewelry, sunglasses, handbags, wallets, and gifts

Primary vendors will include:

  • XCVI
  • Girly Girl
  • Bechamel
  • Kenneth Cole
  • Trendsetter
  • Onyx

Secondary vendors will include:

  • Fossil
  • Tommy Hilfiger
  • Nine West
  • Cool Girl
  • Luxury

Company descriptions and photographs of primary and secondary lines that will be carried by RealWomen, Inc., are included in the appendices.

In addition to clothing, RealWomen, Inc., will carry 5 percent of its stock in related stock—accessories. Accessories will include jewelry, sunglasses, handbags, wallets, and gift items. The store will carry product lines by Kenneth Cole, Fossil, and Nine West in these merchandise classifications.

Market Trips (Plan for This but COVID May Alter This in the Future)

Merchandise (pre-COVID) were be ordered at apparel markets located in Dallas and Los Angeles five times annually. Travel expenses (e.g., hotel, meals, transportation) for buying trips to market five times per year were included in the financial plan in the past. Open-to-buy, the monthly amount of dollars (calculated at retail) to be spent on new merchandise, will be calculated based on the current six-month plan to determine the amount of funds to be spent at each market. To follow is an annual schedule for market trips:






Purchase stock for holiday

Los Angeles


Purchase stock for spring

Los Angeles


Purchase stock for summer



Purchase stock for fall

Markup/Markdown Policies

The women’s apparel industry introduces new fashion trends each season. This causes the inventory to be dated, so unsold goods must be discounted toward the end of the season in order to sell and move outmoded stock out of the store. Markdowns on merchandise will be taken monthly on poor-performing merchandise at a rate of 30 percent off retail for the first markdown, followed by 50 percent off original retail if unsold after thirty days following the first markdown. Merchandise will be gradually discounted until sold. Markdowns will be designated by the owner and tabulated by the assistant manager. The subtotals will be input into the computer system by vendor number to enable vendor performance analysis and to maintain an accurate book inventory. The majority of markdowns will be taken on fall/winter merchandise during the month of January and on spring/summer merchandise during the month of July for two major annual clearance sales.

In terms of markup policies, RealWomen, Inc., will use the keystone method of retail pricing. With this method, retail prices are set at double the cost of the merchandise at wholesale to obtain the original selling price. The store will mark up merchandise 122 percent based on cost, 45 percent based on retail

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