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Clothing fails in e-merchandising

Clothing retailers are being outgunned by retailers from other sectors when it comes to online merchandising, according to an annual index.

The Peerius Online Merchandising Index, which this year included non-clothing businesses for the first time, saw clothing businesses edged out of the top spot in three of the four judging categories.

Fashion dominated the category, with Dorothy Perkins topping the list thanks to its user-friendly mobile app and mobile-optimised website. Next, Asos, New Look, Topshop, River Island and H&M also featured.

But the sector was weak in other categories such as visualisation – how products are presented – where only House of Fraser and Sports Direct made it into the top six.

Roger Brown, chief executive of Peerius, a website personalisationsoftware firm, said: “Historically the apparel sector has been viewed as the home of merchandising best practice. However, this year’s index tells us this is no longer the case.”

Brown highlighted the low rating for clothing sites’ home pages and category pages – for example, Dorothy Perkins, the top clothing retailer and ranked second overall, scored zero for both.

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