Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - M37

Diane's Beachwear
"We specialize in swimwear and that's 51 percent of our
business," Biggs explains. "It's what we are known for; however, everything else we offer is an add-on. So if you're going
to the beach or a resort, we have what you need to pack your
suitcases with. Our customers buy up to three suits from us
at a time. So while they're in the dressing room, we show
them cover-ups and anything else that could go in their
suitcase. In addition, everything has to be related, so if you're
going to the beach that includes a towel, suit, sunglasses, hat
and lots of other options."
Diane's Beachwear does not offer ready-to-wear products;
instead, it provides cover-ups and sundresses customers can
put on after leaving the beach. "Everything is non-constructed," Biggs says. "So it's sexy, easy and classy beachwear."
The goal is to be a one-stop shop for customers so that
they do not have to go elsewhere. "Our customers range in
age from young pre-teens to 80 years old," Biggs says. "They
expect the latest in swimwear specialty when they come into
one of our stores. That's why we try to offer varying price
points so that everyone who comes in can afford something."
Though most of the company's vendors have their own
websites, Biggs notes that they "help each other out." "A lot
of them like our stores to be brick-and-mortar because people come in and can see all the different brands and products
that we offer. Our vendors support us as well by helping us
with marketing campaigns and featuring us on their website
as well, so we really work together."

The majority of Diane's Beachwear customers
still visit any of its 21 brick-and-mortar stores.

happy, the company continues to move forward by continuously re-inventing itself. "In our business, it isn't possible to
thrive without reinventing yourself," she says. "Our shoppers
are savvy, so they know when there's something not right in
your company. So we are constantly bringing new merchan-

A Destination
Biggs notes that the majority of its customers still come
into its brick-and-mortar stores. "We emphasize offering
the best experience and making each location a destination,
with product mixes and a look that matches the surrounding
community," she explains.
With 21 stores, Diane's Beachwear may not have a large
number of locations compared to some national chains.
However, Biggs says that is the No. 1 factor that sets the
company apart from its competitors. "We are able to be more
hands-on," she explains. "If we had 100 stores we wouldn't
be able to operate the way we do, and it would be more of a
cookie-cutter process.
"Another advantage is we are able to treat each store like a
boutique," she adds. "So for each location, we are very aware
of the profile of what the customer and location itself is.
If I had 100 stores, I'd have to make them all the same to
operate them, which doesn't sound as nearly as exciting as
what we do. We like the boutique environment and are not
looking to expand currently. So we want to make the stores
we have currently the best."
Though it is a challenge to "keep all those plates spinning,"
Biggs notes, as well as to ensure that customers and staff are
May/June 2017

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017

Contents
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - Intro
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - Cover1
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - Cover2
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - 1
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - Contents
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - 3
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - 4
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - 5
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - 6
Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - 7
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Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - MCover1
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Retail Merchandiser - May/June 2017 - M1
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