Introduction to Buying & Merchandising

Fashion Retail Academy (FRA)

Program Description

Introduction to Buying & Merchandising

Fashion Retail Academy (FRA)

Course: Buying and Merchandising Introduction 5-Day Intensive

This intensive course provides an introduction to buying and merchandising operations within a fashion retail business and includes key elements from the Introduction to Buying & Range Planning and Introduction to Merchandising courses. It outlines the day to day roles of the buyer and merchandiser in different fashion retail organisations and provides an insight into how closely buying and merchandising work together to ensure business success. A Merchandising module is delivered over 3 days and buying module over 2 days.

The course will include:

  • Customer profiling
  • Creating range plans
  • Mood boards
  • Identifying trends
  • Trend forecasting
  • Supply chain
  • Critical path
  • Seasonal calendars
  • Margin and mark-up
  • Practical buying and merchandising exercises
  • Career advice

On successful completion of this course you can progress to the Buying and Merchandising Intermediate programme.

The course will include a combination of lectures, workshops, practical activities, group and individual work and presentations.

Both modules are delivered in a way so that information is integrated between the topics and reference made as to how the functions work together in the fashion industry. The course is delivered by two experienced tutors who are both industry experts in the fields of buying and merchandising. The following aspects of merchandising and buying are covered:


  • Role of the Merchandiser - key responsibilities of the merchandiser and allocator within the retail organisation, key skills required, aims and objectives
  • Sales Forecasting and Range Plans - Strategy, analysis, planning, implementation, product hierarchy, store groupings, option planning and forecasting
  • Seasonal Calendars - Selecting the assortment for a season, constants, variable and seasonal calculations
  • Sourcing and Costing - Supply chain management, elements of product cost, the suppliers cost and cost sheets
  • Margin & Mark-Up - Calculating a selling price, margin principles, mark-ups, hidden costs and margin improvement
  • In Season Allocation - Stock management, EPOS system, WSSI
  • Promotions & Markdowns - Planning and forecasting markdowns, calculating a markdown and estimating the effectiveness of a markdown


  • Customer Profiling - An examination of population measurements (geographics, demographics, psycho-graphics), pen portraits, marketing theories and case studies
  • Role of the Buyer - Responsibilities of the buyer within the retail organisation and the key skills required. Day-to-day tasks are described for all levels of buying within a variety of fashion retail businesses and sectors
  • Trend Analysis - Trend analysis is examined to establish how buyers know what to buy. Trend forecasting packages are available for students to utilise in order to complete practical tasks including trend research and mood boards
  • Range Planning - An exploration of the creative aspects of range planning required to create a balanced and commercial range. A practical task is set to bring range planning processes to life
  • Tools for making effective buying decisions and driving sales of a fashion range are also discussed
  • Product Development - Includes discussion of the buying cycles, buying trips, competitor analysis, critical path management, buyers packs, quality control and lead times
  • Sourcing - Examines strategic sourcing, PESTLE analysis, internal and external consideration, supply chain management, factory visits and current issues affecting sourcing

Suitable for:

Over 18 years of age, beginner

Pre-course prep

In preparation for the course arrange to visit and compare some of the different retail areas in London including, Bond Street, Oxford Street and Westfield (White City or Stratford). Please bring with you:

  • Pen and notebook
  • USB stick


  • Day 1-3: Merchandising 10.00am - 4.30pm (including lunch break) Day 4-5: Buying 10.00am-4.30pm (including lunch break)
This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated January 3, 2017
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Feb. 27, 2017
Apr. 24, 2017
3 - 5 days
Full time
695 GBP
Start date Feb. 27, 2017
United Kingdom London, England
Application deadline Request Info
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