Companies in this industry primarily sell casual, dress, and athletic shoes, including orthopedic shoes, from physical retail locations. Major US companies include Caleres (formerly Brown Shoe Company and owner of Famous Footwear and Naturalizer), DSW, Foot Locker, Genesco, and Payless ShoeSource. Some shoe manufacturers, such as Nike, also have retail operations. Major non-US companies include Aldo Group (Canada), Belle International (China), The Deichmann Group (Germany), and Vivarte (France).
New styles and personal income drive demand. The profitability of individual companies depends on effective merchandising and competitive pricing. Large companies have advantages in purchasing, distribution, and marketing. Small companies can compete effectively by stocking specialty products, providing superior customer service, or serving a local market. The US industry is concentrated: the top 50 companies account for about 80% of industry revenue.
Products, Operations & Technology
Major products sold by shoe stores include women’s casual and dress shoes (nearly 30% of industry revenue); men’s athletic shoes (20%); men’s casual and dress shoes (13%), and women’s athletic shoes (10%). Other products include handbags, hosiery, and jewelry. Companies may specialize in men’s, women’s, children’s, or athletic shoes. Many shoe retailers are family shoe stores, which offer merchandise for multiple targets.