As we highlighted earlier this year in our Women’s Fashion post, trends in the apparel category shift with the seasons—or even more often.
What’s new in women’s shoe industry trends?
Here are some of the latest women’s shoe trends from this year’s Fashion Month:
- Balmain’s pillowy slides caught the eye of those at Paris Fashion Week. Hypebeast described them as a “round and bulbous sole unit looks to be made from rubber, while a large covering of soft padded leather sits on top and holds your foot in place”.
- MarieClaire noticed fuzzy slippers like these blue ones from Coach. Their recommendation? “When looking for a furry slipper that is also appropriate for the outside world, make sure the soles are substantial”
- The fluted heel is back. According to Bustle.com, “if you want a classic look that’s still sculptural, consider the fluted heel that’s back in style, thanks to the likes of Roger Vivier and Chanel.”
- HarpersBazaar noted that Gate Leather Sandals were an inspired look. “Loewe’s saddle-stitched Gate sandals ground just about any springtime outfit.”
Insights for Women’s Shoe Brands: What’s Hot, Not, & Next
The worldwide women’s footwear will reach $220 billion by 2027 and includes styles such as pumps, heels, sneakers, flats, slippers, and boots. Fashion trends change quickly in women’s clothing which means that staying ahead of these shifts is of utmost importance to brands in this category.
Consumer and market intelligence platforms like Skai are increasingly used by women’s shoe brands looking to keep a finger on the pulse of what is happening in the category in real-time and get ahead of the latest trends.
Skai collects more data than anyone else relevant to women’s shoes (social reviews, product listings, ratings, reviews, patents, etc.) so that brands don’t miss a thing. Then, we apply natural language processing so that it’s easy to extract what is happening in the women’s shoe category and why — and what will happen in the future. And we visualize the data in a way that makes it easy to understand for anyone from Insights, Marketing, Brand, Product Innovation, and more.
Our Women’s Shoe category includes data from over:
- 425,000+ products
- 3,800,000+ consumer discussions
- 3,900,000+ product reviews
- 3,300+ key opinion leader posts
- 20,000+ patents
So what is the data showing us? Let’s take a look!
- Pocket. Most of us know about the frustration that women have with the lack of pockets—or sizable pockets—with their clothes. In the last twelve months, there has been a 327% increase in women’s shoe social media posts that feature Pockets as well as a 99% increase in consumer product reviews to feature them.
- Open Toe women’s shoes are a staple of the category with more than 18,600 of the products Skai monitors mentioning this feature (and 4,470 new Open Toe women’s shoes released last year)
- Slip Resistance is a benefit that is incredibly important for shoes. There has been a 150% increase in women’s shoe posts that mention Slip Resistance in the last twelve months.
- Impact Absorption. When it comes to women’s shoes, sometimes practicality and comfort are trumped by fashion trends. In the last year, there has been a 44% decline in women’s shoe products that feature Impact Absorption as a benefit.
- Rubber has been a key material in women’s fashion forever. With 195,000+ women’s shoe products mentioning Rubber, it’s hard to imagine this material is on the decline. However, there was a 55% drop in new women’s shoes released in the last year to mention Rubber. Although it may not be declining in manufacturing uses, it’s certainly taking a back seat to other things in online product descriptions.
- Business Casual is a functioning style of apparel that can work both in professional and non-professional settings. But, it would seem in women’s shoes, shoppers may simply prefer to swap out of their career footwear and exchange them for casual ones when the workday stops. There has been a 22% dip in consumer product reviews of women’s shoes that mention Business Casual and a 17% decline in new products of this type released in the last twelve months.
- Sustainability/Environmentally Friendly is a trend that is sweeping into every consumer goods category—and beyond. There has been a 109% increase in women’s shoe social media posts that mention this topic.
- High-Rise shoes could be the next big thing with a 61% increase in women’s shoes released last year to spotlight this feature. There’s also been a 435% increase in social media buzz in women’s shoe posts about it too.
- Sweat Absorption. The average pair of feet have 250,000 sweat glands that can produce about a measuring cup of perspiration per day. In fact, sweat glands are more concentrated on the feet than in any other part of the body. So it’s not surprising that there has been a 714% increase in women’s shoes social media posts that mention Sweat Absorption as a benefit.
Top Women’s Shoe Brands
(by number of consumer discussions, Sept 2021)
The women’s shoe trend to watch: maternity
With 130-140 million babies born every year around the world, could there be a rising new market in women’s shoes to help during pregnancy?
It makes sense. First of all, women can gain between 11 and 40 pounds when they’re pregnant—and that’s not even if they’re having multiples like twins or triplets. The best women’s shoes during maternity should be flexible enough to handle any swelling and built strong enough to handle the extra weight.
And did you know that women’s feet can actually grow during pregnancy? According to a recent article, “there are numerous bones, ligaments, and tendons that the feet are comprised of, and it’s common that they tend to loosen and relax during pregnancy. The additional weight gain that pregnant women endure will cause the feet to become wider, in addition to stretching the joints.”
There was a 74% increase in women’s shoes released in the last year that highlight Maternity as well as a 300% increase in women’s shoe social media posts that mention this benefit. While there are some products out there that are geared toward pregnant women, this still may be a bit of an untapped market.
To find out what’s hot, what’s not, and what’s next in your industry, please reach out today to schedule a brief demo of Skai’s market intelligence platform.