SHE Level 3
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M3N522464
Module Leader n/a
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject Fashion and Marketing
  • B (January start)

Summary of Content

The retail buying and merchandising function is at the heart of the retail business, it works closely with finance, marketing and store operations - in particular visual merchandising. The aim of this module is to focus on retailers' buying, merchandising and visual merchandising activities and the process of managing retailers' products from concept to customer. The module begins by exploring retailers' buying, merchandising and allocation activities and how these impact upon sales forecasting, achievement and profitability. The module fully supports PRME guidelines and as such consideration is given to the ethical aspects of international sourcing. Students will critically evaluate the different activities that take place within buying and merchandising and analyse how different strategies may be implemented in different retail formats and stores. These different retail formats and stores are discussed in recognition of the increasing strategic significance of visual merchandising (VM). The history, form and function of VM are considered before key design principles and processes are evaluated. The module continues by critically evaluating the theoretical frameworks and contemporary practice involved in store design, atmospherics, window and interior display and the role of VM in presenting the retail proposition. Throughout the module an evolutionary approach is adopted affording students an understanding of the product management cycle from concept to customer. Summary of how PRME-related issues / topics are covered in this module : In the modern fashion industry the buying and sourcing function now operates on an international level lending a truly global perspective to the module. This perspective will be cemented by in-depth consideration of the ethical, environmental and social issues involved in buying and sourcing of fashion products. Guest lectures from industry practitioners will assist in illustrating the connection between theory and practice and provide contemporary industry insight into the fields of buying, merchandising and visual merchandising.


Introduction to the role, nature and scope of the buying and merchandising functions The product management process The buying cycle Range planning and sales forecasting The management of product categories New product development and the role of own brands Supplier selection and relationships and their influence on price, speed and quality International sourcing strategies and the ethical considerations for buyers and suppliers Analysis of different strategies to allocate product to retail stores Managing inventory from warehouse to sell through Sales based ordering, automatic replenishment and the role of suppliers in inventory management Achieving profitability through driving gross margin Sales promotions and markdowns and their effect on gross margin Translating the product range to a credible store range for the retail brand Communicating the product offer to the consumer History form and function of VM VM and consumer behaviour VM design principles? Store location and store design? Space management and store layout Store environment and atmospherics Window display? Interior display VM and market position? VM online? International trends in VM

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student should be able to:1. Demonstrate a deep understanding of the structure, scope, influence and control of buying, merchandising and visual merchandising2. Analyse the different factors and ethical considerations that influence product range planning, international sourcing, selection, inventory management and response strategies3. Analyse strategic and operational buying and merchandising issues and performance indicators4. Evaluate the critical path in managing product from concept to customer. 5. Critically examine the strategic significance of visual merchandising in terms of retail performance6. Assess critically the application of visual merchandising principles and theoretical frameworks to the retail environment

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The teaching and learning strategy will consist of lectures, seminars, directed study and independent student learning. Theories and concepts will be delivered in lectures, handouts and by directed reading. The application of materials will be delivered through workshops in the form of individual and group tasks. This module will be supported by VLE in the form of Blackboard, which will enhance the students' learning experience. Blackboard will provide a vehicle to display lecture presentations, provide contact information to both staff and other class members. Seminar topics, associated reading and bulletin boards will also be available. Guest lectures from practitioners will be used to demonstrate the connection between theory and practice and provide contemporary industry insight. GSBS will continue to use the advancement of GCU Learn as a blended learning tool through its teaching and learning as well as through engagement with students. GSBS will ensure that all modules are GCU Learn enabled and with the support of the Learning Technologists at the cutting edge of development of online materials. Academic staff and the Learning Technologists will continue to work together to develop and operate all modules on GCULearn to ensure student support and information sharing.

Indicative Reading

-567 Books and articles: Bell, J. & Ternus, K. (2006) Silent Selling: Best Practices and Effective Strategies for Visual Merchandising . Fairchild: USA Christopher, M. (2003) Marketing Logistic. Butterworth-Heinemann Diamond, J., & Pintel, G. (2013) Retail Buying. 9 th ed. Prentice-Hill Diamond, J., & Pintel, G. (2008) Retail Buying. 8 th ed. Prentice-Hill -567 Fernie, J., & Sparks, L. (2004) Logistics and Retail Management. 2 nd ed. London: Kogan Page Gowerek, H. (2007), 2 nd Edition, Butterworth Heinemann Holmes, G., & Glaser, S. (1991) Business to Business Negotiations. Butterworth-Heinemann -22 Jacobsen, M. (2009) The Art of Retail Buying: An introduction to best practices from the industry. John Wiley & Sons Jackson, T. & Shaw, D. (2001) Mastering Fashion Buying and Merchandise Management. MacMillan Press -567 Levy, M., & Weitz, B.A. (2012) Retailing Management . McGraw-Hill: New York Lusch, R.F., Dunne, P.M., & Carver, J.R. (2011) Introduction to Retailing . South-Western Cengage Learning: China -567 McGoldrick, P (2002) Retail Marketing . McGraw-Hill: London Morgan, T. (2008) Visual Merchandising. Lawrence King Publishing: London Pegler, M. (2006) Visual Merchandising and Display. Fairchild: USA Tepper, B. (2008) Mathematics Retail Buying. 6 th ed. Fairchild Books Varley, R. (2014) Retail Product Management. 2 nd ed. Routledge -567 Journals: Drapers Record European Journal of Marketing Journal of Advertising Research? International Journal of Advertising Journal of Fashion Marketing Management International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management Journal of Product and Brand ManagementJournal of Promotion Management Journal of Marketing Research Design Week Drapers Record Marketing Weekly VMSD

Transferrable Skills

By the end of this module students will have gained competence in the following key areas: Knowledge and understanding in the context of the subject: demonstrate broad and more specialist understanding of subject. Time management: manage own time in order to meet deadlines? Independent working: work effectively in an independent form. Information retrieval skills: demonstrate ability to source information using traditional and electronic methods. IT skills: work effectively using information and communication technology such as web and Internet, databases, spreadsheets, email and word processing. Communication skills, written oral and listening: demonstrate ability to communicate accurately and appropriately to the audience. Numeracy skills: use financial and other forms of numerical data to report information and solve problems

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Practicals (FT) 12.00
Seminars (FT) 12.00
Independent Learning (FT) 102.00
Assessment (FT) 50.00
Lectures (FT) 24.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 01 n/a 100.00 35% Creative group presentation (30 minutes) and accompanying report (Week 14)