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Footwear Retail

Americans spent $112.7 billion on shoes in 2023. There are ~278,000 footwear workers nationwide. Average pay for employees in U.S. shoe stores is $23.85 per hour.

Footwear remains one of the most beloved items Americans purchase. In 2023, the U.S. imported 5.9 pairs of shoes for every man, woman, and child in the country, and annual sales topped $112.7 billion. Footwear retail has changed dramatically from where shoes are sold to the styles and trends consumers are looking to buy.  Footwear companies invest tens of millions of dollars each year in their people, stores, and platforms to ensure they deliver high-quality shoes in a timely manner—in fact, footwear has one of the most robust supply chains in the world.

The industry is currently facing retail challenges like other industries: how to adapt to rapid consumer demand shifts from the pandemic, discounting, and how to develop and implement speed to market strategies.  Amid all the changes, footwear retailers continue to survive through the use of innovative and robust strategies both online and in shoe stores. If you love shoes, we encourage you to listen to our weekly podcast where we cover footwear retail topics, issues, and best practices to help retailers. We also encourage you to contact FDRA if you seek more insights on footwear retail.

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Footwear retail insights from industry leaders

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FDRA’s Footwear Retail Program

FDRA represents and serves over 95% of all footwear distributors and retailers in America.  To help its members understand and adapt to a changing retail landscape, FDRA produces a number of data reports and holds monthly calls related to footwear sales, as well as economic and retail trends impacting the industry.  FDRA’s data and analysis covers multiple channels from shoe stores and department stores to internet sales.

Below are samples and descriptions of various products and services FDRA provides its members.  If you are an FDRA member, you can find the most up-to-date reports and newsletters located in the FDRA Intel Center. If you are not a member but are interested in joining to get FDRA’s full range of data, analysis and services, please contact FDRA.

  • Monthly US Shoe Sales Report: Monthly FDRA analysis of both general and footwear-specific retail data from U.S. Government sources.  Covers sales data for independent shoe stores, e-commerce, and mass retail alike.
  • Monthly US Footwear Price Report: Provides insight into footwear price trends for men’s, women’s, and children’s footwear and forecasts future price trends based on historical data.  Useful tool for FDRA members tracking discounting and pricing shifts.
  • Shoe Store Employment Update: Captures vital information on wages, working hours, and employment levels at shoe stores across the U.S. for FDRA members. Useful for industry HR professionals.
  • Monthly Footwear Newsletter on Retail Trend: FDRA issues a monthly Footwear Retail Recap newsletter to the entire industry at the end of each month highlighting top news stories and consumer trend updates. Register to receive this newsletter.
  • NPD Marketplace Trends Report: In partnership with the NPD Group, this report measures and analyzes quarterly footwear sales exploring key market drivers to help companies see important trends from age, race, region, income, and product type. Many companies use this to enhance their sales and marketing programs.
  • FDRA’s National Shoe Consumer Surveys: FDRA sends out a periodic national survey to shoe consumers asking questions about their buying preferences to better help companies understand new and changing spending patterns from price point and product to what channels consumers are using to purchase shoes.
  • Monthly European Footwear Report: Navigating the complex European marketplace? FDRA publishes a monthly look at import trends impacting the European footwear market, along with forecasts.
  • Monthly Canadian Footwear Sales Analysis: Selling shoes north of the border? This report includes sales data and FDRA analysis from shoe stores across Canada.