How To Conquer Fashion E-Commerce Success With 7 Stats Only
Have you already started to sell your fashions online?
If not, these 7 fashion e-commerce stats will make you rush to do it. You don’t want to miss such a tremendous opportunity.
If yes, where do you sell them? In your own online store or on marketplaces?
The difference is in traffic and profit. And it can be big.
Let me show you all the actionable tips you can put in practice right now from these 7 stats.
Make your fashion business a growing success for the years to come.
The best thing?
Without knowing it, you have already done most of the work.
Let’s finish it now, so you are fully ready.
14% has been the online apparel market annual growth rate since 2012
Compared to 1% for the offline apparel market in 2018 according to Forrester.
Customers are increasingly glued to their smartphones and the internet.
Google searches for stores opening hours have dropped.
An online store is always open when consumers need it, 24/7.
And Amazon Prime (free delivery the next day) makes it much harder to lure customers back into stores.
The shopping traffic is more and more online, and foot traffic will continue to fall.
Major fashion players keep investing primarily in e-commerce and digital marketing.
A huge majority of fashion newcomers start their business online only.
The internet is the right environment for new fashion designers to start and grow. Proven.
When do you start there?
20% is the fashion spending within the total of online retail spending
According to Forrester’s statistics.
The average person today buys 60% more items of clothing than they did 15 years ago. And they keep them half as long as they used to.
Clothing has become a disposable product.
The online offer of fashion products keeps growing because there is no space limit.
As product variety increases, the fit between someone’s ideal product and what’s available improves.
And research shows that with more choice, people will consume more rather than less.
The best example is Airbnb. They didn’t replace the hotel industry. They offered a chance to go vacation to more people and more often. Airbnb grew the vacation market before taking its share of it.
With their crave for newness, Millenials and Gen Z drive fashion consumption (The State of Fashion 2019, McKinsey & The Business of Fashion). They buy, but also resell and rent fashion (giving them the double advantage of newness and sustainability).
A survey done in Britain showed that:
- 1 in 3 young women considers clothes “old” after wearing them once or twice
- 1 in 7 considers it a fashion “faux-pas” to be photographed in the same outfit twice
As Millenials and Gen Z will make up around 60% of the workforce in 2020, the demand for need new fashion designers’ products will not stop. To the opposite.
Sharpen your pencils!
60% of customers do not want any interaction with sales people
Because they don’t need them anymore.
Today, customers don’t need any fashion middleman in fact.
Salespersons, as well as retailers and editors, will need to redefine their utility or disappear.
Before the internet, editors’ choices in fashion magazines would inspire consumers to buy. The editors supported wholesalers and retailers to buy the same choices. Then, brands’ salespeople would reinforce purchases in-store.
[Fashion] show reviews were once scrutinized by wholesale buyers who curated clothing for consumers. But do the opinion of critics or buyers really matter when brands can connect directly with consumers online…”
I want this to be a company that lives way beyond me, and I believe that customers are more important in making this happen than the press.”Alexander McQueen
Obviously, he was right.
Now, consumers get fashion inspiration from social media, TV shows, influencers, and celebrities. But they also follow their friends’ styles and attractive looks of anonymous on the street.
A Millennial survey in 2107 showed that 41% rely on influencers and bloggers and 20% only rely on store employees for fashion advice.
Simply put, customers are now in charge. They love that and behave completely different from what they used to.
The fashion designers and brands, big and small, would do well to adjust to their future customers’ needs and desires.
Good news! It will only cost you a bit of time but no money.
$713 billion are the worldwide revenues of fashion e-commerce projected for 2022
There are $481 billion revenues of fashion e-commerce in 2018 according to Shopify.
Because online shopping is not a “trend.” It isn’t going to stop any time soon because it benefits so much the buyer.
- Convenience (shopping from home at any time)
- Quicker transactions (no line up at the cash desk)
- Informed purchasing decisions (through customer reviews)
- Lower price (due to lower costs)
- Improved delivery process (and easy exchanges)
Even as a new fashion designer “on the block,” you can get your share of worldwide fashion e-commerce revenues.
You only need desirable fashion products and an online store to sell them.
The former requires design and production. Then, the latter is a walk in a park.
77% of people read online reviews before buying
Says Business.com, and many other articles provide the same statistics.
Because they need to feel trust for the product and the fashion brand.
Fashion is traditionally one the most opaque industries. But without transparency, customers begin to wonder what the brands have to hide and start to distrust them.
2 in 5 consumers say they don’t know which fashion brands to trust, according to The State of Fashion 2019, the report of McKinsey & The Business of Fashion.
As a consequence, brand loyalty is falling.
Not taking the time to gather product reviews from your best customers is not only a terrible mistake for your business but also a costly one! Unmeasurable though, because you will never know how many sales you missed.
When customers are happy with your product, chances are high that they agree to tell the world.
But, when they are unhappy, their energy multiplies to tell the world too. And you don’t want that.
Apart from positive customer reviews, your brand also needs to behave well.
Burberry and Dolce Gabanna learned a lesson in 2018. Customers didn’t like their actions and did let them know immediately: they just stopped buying.
- Burberry burned millions worth merchandise to avoid having to discount them. Waste is not accepted anymore. The brand backed off and apologized.
- Dolce Gabanna launched an advertising video Asian people found offensive for them. Racism is not acceptable. The Italian brand had to back off as well.
Those types of mistakes were going under the radar before. In the internet era, the image damage is instant, and the financial damage follows in a matter of hours.
2 in 3 consumers are seriously concerned about social and environmental causes. They demand sustainability and transparency commitments from fashion brands.
Billions of customers use their shopping habits as a mean to express their values and choose to support brands that are doing good in the world.
Make your fashion product reviews tell the world that you, as a new fashion designer, are on the right side.
The side of customers.
93% of online customers like to shop at small businesses
- 40% want to support small businesses
- 24% like the innovative shopping experience small businesses often provide
Differentiation is of high importance in fashion. Customers’ fashion choices are reflections of a sense of style, self-image, and values. All that is very personal.
Millennials look for new, different and authentic products, services and experiences. As such, they love small brands with compelling storytelling.
And social media helps small brands grow explosively.
They are twice as likely as baby boomers to prefer up-and-coming designers (The State of Fashion 2019, McKinsey & The Business of Fashion). They are also more likely to actively avoid established fashion brands. Millennials also like to be the first adopters of new and innovative fashion brands and products.
The preferences of Millennials are also spilling over into older and younger generations.
Mass retailers start to love small brands too. Their differentiation brings traffic and margins stay higher because small brand rarely discount. When you have a small production like capsules or product drops, you sell most of your products at full price. Statistics reveal that only 27% of small-brand sales happen on promotion versus 44% for large-brand sales.
Fashion customers today refuse to be ripped off with high prices for designers’ clothes. And they know much better what things cost.
Small brands don’t try to attract everyone like big and established fashion brands. They target specific market niches and respond to new market needs with the right price and the right value. That strategy has proven very effective.
Get ready for the explosion of small and board the train!
1 of the 3 biggest consumer shifts in 2019 and beyond is: “Platforms first”
In The State of Fashion 2019, the report written by McKinsey & The Business of Fashion.
Think about Uber.
- Today you can get taxi drivers in minutes when you don’t see any around
- You know at all times where that taxi is and when it arrives
- The car is clean
- The driver is polite
- If you are driven circles, you see it right away even though you don’t know the area at all – Uber sees it too and refunds you
- You don’t need cash in your pockets
- You don’t need to wait for the credit card machine to find the network or the receipt to be written
- On top of that, it costs less
Time gained. Comfort gained. Transparency gained. Money saved.
All that sounds normal now, but we had none of the above just 10 years ago, right?
This is a life-changing service. No wonder why consumers adopted it in a wink.
And it’s not only better for customers, but also for drivers too. Uber drivers earn more money even with a lower trip rate because they waste less time and drive for money more often.
Only platforms or marketplaces make that shift for the better possible. Because they work to meet both sides’ needs as much: the sellers and the buyers.
The 2 other biggest consumer shifts are:
- Mobile obsessed
- Startup thinking
A fashion marketplace brings transparency, value for money to customers and save their time as a one-stop-shop.
And traffic and profit to fashion designers.
When customers don’t know your name, how do you get known in a neverending list of fashion brands, at war for attention online?
Platforms help sellers not to stay alone, isolated and invisible to customers.
If fashion consumers shop on platforms or marketplaces, isn’t it the place you should go too to meet new customers and grow your new fashion business?
Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.”Ryunosuke Satoro
A marketplace makes you be a global fashion business instantly. You can be a micro-seller, but your reach is macro.
Growth is never by mere chance; it is the result of forces working together.”James Cash Penney
Marketplaces have many more benefits for designers:
- Lower or no upfront costs with no brick and mortar locations and no salespeople
- Worldwide reach of customers
- Around-the-clock selling
- Control over customer experience
- Greater visibility via SEO
- Control over all costs and inventory management
- And the new gold at your fingertips: data. Data analytics help you take the right decisions at the right time and drive your business wisely.
Consumers will increasingly look to online platforms as the first point of search, attracted by their convenience, relevance, and breadth of offering. The growth of online platforms is a testament to their success in winning over the consumer.”The State of Fashion 2018
If fashion consumers shop on platforms or marketplaces, isn’t it the place you should go too?
Go meet your new customers and grow your new fashion business.
The future of fashion e-commerce is shining bright and launching an online fashion business has never been easier, faster and cheaper.
All stats about the online fashion business are positive. Not only those 7 ones.
Fashion designers’ brands will get their piece of the growing fashion online business pie in the next few years. And some may have not even started yet.
Would you like to be part of the future fashion e-commerce success?
It’s definitely within reach from now on.
Up to you!
(Photos from Unsplash: Rawpixel, Henry & Co, Levi Alvarez, Cam Morin, Stephen Baker, Brooke Cagle, NeONBRAND, Sai De Silva, Clem Onojeghuo, Bench Accounting, Ryoji Iwata, Andre Hunter, Carlos Muza, Victoria Heath).
P.S. Fashion Talents is an open marketplace where you create your fashion eBusiness in minutes.
Or contact us to get a demo.
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Fanny is the CEO + Co-founder of Fashion Talents, and a passionate and tireless promoter of new fashion designers. She’s on a mission to open fashion business to all talents around the world and drive shoppers, sales, and success to them.