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Handbags - UK - January 2017

“Retailers and designer brands need to adjust to a new reality where handbags are no longer a sure-fire revenue generator. However, focusing on newness, unique designs and customisable bags provides a way to encourage higher levels of purchasing.”
– Tamara Sender, Senior Fashion Analyst

This Report answers the following key questions:

  • How has the handbag market performed over the last year?
  • Which retailers and brands stand out in the sector?
  • What can help drive sales in the handbag sector?

For the purposes of this Report, the term handbags is used to define all types of handbags and man bags worn by women and men, including backpack-style handbags, but excluding rucksacks, luggage, laptop bags, purses and wallets.

Mintel’s consumer research for this Report covers purchasing of different types of handbags and man bags, where consumers bought these, average spend on handbags, the most important factors when purchasing a new bag and female and male attitudes towards buying handbags and man bags.

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Handbag market grows 2.6% in 2016
              • Figure 1: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK value sales of handbags, 2011-21
            • Tourism spend up in July and August
              • Companies, brands and innovation
                • Radley is the most trusted brand
                  • Figure 2: Attitudes towards and usage of selected brands, December 2016
                • Luxury brands see slower sales growth
                  • Department stores invest in new accessories spaces
                    • The consumer
                      • Fewer women bought handbags in the last 12 months
                        • Figure 3: Types of handbags/man bags purchased in the last 12 months, October 2016
                      • A third buy handbags as a gift
                        • Figure 4: Who handbags/man bags were purchased for, October 2016
                      • Consumers buy bags more online
                        • Figure 5: Where handbags were bought from in the last 12 months, in-store and online, October 2016
                      • Women look for low prices, while men favour quality
                        • Figure 6: How people shop for handbags, October 2016
                      • 30% of Older Millennials buy designer bags
                        • Figure 7: Agreement with statements about buying handbags, October 2016
                      • Growing demand for personalised bags
                        • Figure 8: Interest in innovations, October 2016
                      • What we think
                      • Issues and Insights

                        • How has the handbag market performed over the last year?
                          • The facts
                            • The implications
                              • Which retailers and brands stand out in the sector?
                                • The facts
                                  • The implications
                                    • What can help drive sales in the handbag sector?
                                      • The facts
                                        • The implications
                                        • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                          • Handbag market growth slows to 2.6% in 2016
                                            • Sector will grow by 24% by 2021
                                              • Tourism spend up following June Brexit vote
                                                • French are the main visitors, but US visitors spend twice as much
                                                  • UK sixth in luxury market list
                                                    • Consumers prioritise leisure over shopping
                                                      • Fall in young people will impact sector
                                                      • Market Size and Forecast

                                                        • Handbag market grows 2.6% in 2016
                                                          • Figure 9: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK value sales of handbags, 2011-21
                                                        • The future
                                                          • Figure 10: Value sales of handbags, at current prices, 2011-21
                                                        • Forecast methodology
                                                        • Market Drivers

                                                          • Tourism spend up in July, but falls again in September
                                                            • Figure 11: % change of inbound tourism to the UK, by world region, January-October 2015-January-October 2016
                                                          • French are the main visitors
                                                            • Figure 12: Top 10 countries, by volume of visits to the UK, 2015
                                                          • US visitors are the biggest spenders
                                                            • Figure 13: Top 10 countries, by amount spent when visiting the UK, 2015
                                                          • UK sixth in luxury market list
                                                            • Figure 14: Top 10 countries in the luxury market, by sales, 2011-15
                                                            • Figure 15: Country shares of the global luxury market, 2011-15
                                                          • Deflation in the price of accessories
                                                            • Figure 16: Consumer prices inflation: garments, other clothing and accessories, footwear, November 2015-November 2016
                                                          • Consumers prioritise leisure over shopping
                                                            • Figure 17: What extra money is spent on, November 2015 and November 2016
                                                          • Consumer confidence only dips slightly post-Brexit
                                                            • Figure 18: Trends in consumer sentiment for the coming year, January 2015-October 2016
                                                          • Implications of a drop in young consumers
                                                            • Figure 19: Trends in the age structure of the UK population, 2011-21
                                                        • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                          • Luxury brands see slower sales growth
                                                            • Weak Pound helped UK luxury sales
                                                              • Shift away from wholesale to own retail stores
                                                                • Department stores invest in new accessories spaces
                                                                  • Designer collaborations
                                                                    • Advertising spend on handbags drops 12%
                                                                      • Radley is the most trusted brand
                                                                      • Competitive Strategies

                                                                        • Financial outlook
                                                                          • Figure 20: Key financials of the main players in the handbag market, 2014-16
                                                                        • Retail offering and brand positioning
                                                                          • Digital activity
                                                                            • New developments
                                                                            • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                              • New handbag launches
                                                                                • New store concepts
                                                                                  • Figure 21: Selfridges’ new accessories hall, December 2016
                                                                                  • Figure 22: The Fountain bar at the centre of Selfridges’ new accessories hall, December 2016
                                                                                  • Figure 23: Harvey Nichols new designer accessories department, Knightsbridge store, November 2016
                                                                                  • Figure 24: Harvey Nichols new designer accessories department, Knightsbridge store, November 2016
                                                                                • Designer collaborations
                                                                                  • Figure 25: Burberry’s Patchwork handbag
                                                                                  • Figure 23: Lady Dior interpreted by seven artists, November 2016
                                                                                • Man bags
                                                                                  • Figure 24: Anya Hindmarch’s men’s collection
                                                                                • Wearable technology
                                                                                  • See now, buy now
                                                                                  • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                    • Adspend on handbags drops 12%
                                                                                      • Figure 25: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on handbags, 2012-16
                                                                                    • Christian Dior grows adspend on Lady Dior bags
                                                                                      • Figure 26: Burberry London Fashion Week, September 2016
                                                                                    • Share of adspend by media type
                                                                                      • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                      • Brand Research

                                                                                          • Brand map
                                                                                            • Figure 27: Attitudes towards and usage of selected brands, December 2016
                                                                                          • Key brand metrics
                                                                                            • Figure 28: Key metrics for selected brands, December 2016
                                                                                          • Brand attitudes: Mulberry is consistently high quality
                                                                                            • Figure 29: Attitudes, by brand, December 2016
                                                                                          • Brand personality: Radley seen as fun
                                                                                            • Figure 30: Brand personality – Macro image, December 2016
                                                                                          • Michael Kors seen as cool
                                                                                            • Figure 31: Brand personality – Micro image, December 2016
                                                                                          • Brand analysis
                                                                                            • Burberry has high levels of awareness
                                                                                              • Figure 32: User profile of Burberry, December 2016
                                                                                            • Michael Kors seen as accessible
                                                                                              • Figure 33: User profile of Michael Kors, December 2016
                                                                                            • Radley is the most trusted brand
                                                                                              • Figure 34: User profile of Radley, December 2016
                                                                                            • Mulberry seen as not diverse enough
                                                                                              • Figure 35: User profile of Mulberry, December 2016
                                                                                            • Longchamp seen as a classic, but is standing still
                                                                                              • Figure 36: User profile of Longchamp, December 2016
                                                                                            • The Cambridge Satchel Company seen as ethical
                                                                                              • Figure 37: User profile of The Cambridge Satchel Company, December 2016
                                                                                          • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                            • Young men buy more man bags
                                                                                              • Fewer women bought handbags in the last 12 months
                                                                                                • A third buy handbags as a gift
                                                                                                  • Consumers buy bags more online
                                                                                                    • Women look for low prices, while men favour quality
                                                                                                      • High demand for unique designs
                                                                                                        • 30% of Older Millennials buy designer bags
                                                                                                          • Young shoppers favour synthetic bags
                                                                                                            • Growing demand for personalised bags
                                                                                                            • What Fashion Items Extra Money is Spent on

                                                                                                              • Handbags most desirable accessory
                                                                                                                • Figure 38: The consumer – What fashion items extra money is spent on in the last three months, by gender, September 2016
                                                                                                            • Types of Handbags Purchased

                                                                                                              • Young men buy more man bags
                                                                                                                  • Figure 39: Types of handbags/man bags purchased in the last 12 months, October 2016
                                                                                                                • Fewer women bought handbags in the last 12 months
                                                                                                                  • Figure 40: Purchasing of any handbag, by women, by age, October 2014 and October 2015
                                                                                                                • Young women favour medium handbags
                                                                                                                  • Most stick to one type of bag
                                                                                                                    • Figure 41: Repertoire of types of handbags/man bags purchased in the last 12 months, October 2016
                                                                                                                • Who Handbags Were Purchased for

                                                                                                                  • 88% of women buy bags for themselves
                                                                                                                    • Figure 42: Who handbags/man bags were purchased for, October 2016
                                                                                                                  • A third buy handbags as a gift
                                                                                                                  • Where Handbags Were Bought

                                                                                                                    • Value retailers most popular for bags
                                                                                                                      • Figure 43: Where handbags were bought from in the last 12 months, in-store and online, October 2016
                                                                                                                    • Department stores grow for handbags
                                                                                                                      • Consumers buy bags more online
                                                                                                                        • Figure 44: Where handbags were bought from in the last 12 months, in-store and online, October 2016
                                                                                                                      • High-end clothing retailers boost handbag sales
                                                                                                                        • Figure 45: Where handbags were bought from in the last 12 months, in-store and online, October 2014 and October 2016
                                                                                                                      • Designer shoppers peak among men
                                                                                                                        • Most tend to buy from one retailer
                                                                                                                          • Figure 46: Repertoire of retailers where handbags were bought, in-store and online, October 2016
                                                                                                                      • How People Shop for Handbags

                                                                                                                        • Women look for low prices, while men favour quality
                                                                                                                            • Figure 47: How people shop for handbags, October 2016
                                                                                                                          • High demand for unique designs
                                                                                                                            • Young favour social media for handbag style inspiration
                                                                                                                                • Figure 48: Agreement with statements ‘I look at magazines for style inspiration before buying a bag’ and ‘I look at social media sites for style inspiration before buying a bag’, by age, October 2016
                                                                                                                            • Attitudes towards Buying Handbags

                                                                                                                              • 30% of Older Millennials buy designer bags
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 49: Agreement with statements about buying handbags, October 2016
                                                                                                                                • Women tend to buy own-brand bags
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 50: Agreement with statements ‘I typically buy designer bags’ and ‘I typically buy own-brand bags’, by gender, October 2016
                                                                                                                                • Young shoppers favour synthetic bags
                                                                                                                                  • Men prefer to buy bags online
                                                                                                                                  • Interest in Innovations

                                                                                                                                    • Handbags made in Britain
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 51: Interest in innovations, October 2016
                                                                                                                                      • Growing demand for personalised bags
                                                                                                                                      • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                          • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                                            • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                                                                            • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                                                              • Forecast Methodology
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 52: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK value sales of handbags, 2016-21

                                                                                                                                              Handbags - UK - January 2017

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