New merchandise allocation software launched by Maple Lake has been designed to enable retailers worldwide to run scenarios and calculations that factor in future customer dynamics.

Most allocation systems "work one product at a time and only look backwards, while customers browse from a selection of products and are looking to be inspired with new and exciting ideas," explains Stuart Aldridge, chief executive officer at Maple Lake.

"When you bring this into the allocation process it's less about the science and more about the customer."

The QuickAllocation tool is being tested by international fashion brands including Columbia Sportswear, Cole Haan, Intermix and Steve Madden shoes.

It can help retailers increase sales by identifying high-performing stores that need additional stock for maximum sales opportunities. A retailer can also increase margins by allocating products to those stores most likely to sell them, which improves the likelihood of selling at full price.

Improving the availability of the right size or colour also boosts customer satisfaction with a store or brand. And making sure the right product is allocated in the first place cuts the cost and time of transferring products from one store to another.