The spring is here and what better way to kick it off than to see some of the big fall-winter catalogues from the leviathan names of the fashion world. This week, in particular, enthusiasts, industry professionals and influencers get to see clothing lines from the likes of Gucci, Burberry, Georgio Armani, and many others.
Fashion Weeks and catalogue reveals are taking place in New York, London, Paris and Milan over the next couple of weeks, with many more to come. Fashion exhibitions enjoy a long and vaunted history; with each show being the making or breaking of big names. Over the past few years, however, the game has been changing.
Unfortunately, the outward impression we get from these significant events is one of disconnect between those that are there, and those that aren’t. But over the past few years, the barriers to entry have started to dissipate. With crucial market trends representing an industry opening itself up to a global and digital marketplace of enthusiastic customers.
eCommerce, more importantly, is one of the territories that fashion retailers are not only leaning into but positively thriving in. According to Statista, online fashion alone will break $872bn by 2023, which is genuinely impressive.
Impressive, yes, but not so surprising when we look closer at the kind of things that are happening in the industry.
Fashion Trend-ing: The Social Proof
Buying clothes online doesn’t happen in a bubble, even if it does feel like it. 70% of people are more likely to buy a piece of clothing based on the recommendations of other users. This kind of guidance ranges from a positive reception on social media to a direct suggestion.
Depending on the kind of experience that a person has, going from social media to the online clothing store, it can benefit the business, overall. 49% of people will head right back to social media to tell others about their experiences with that company.
Social media has rapidly become the proverbial acid test for any business. So it’s essential for any fashion retailer to, not only spread the word on their channels but also to present themselves as a highly communicative business.
This social proof also brings us to the value of people, at large, as contributors for brands. Like Influencers!
The Influencer Factor
While sites like Instagram are considered small-scale compared to giants like Facebook, it still boasts a user-base of 500 million. This number is even more impressive when bearing in mind the following statistic:
50% of all people on Instagram will follow one or more influencers as a source of inspiration. And yes, that also includes fashion advice, by a spectacular margin. While not sporting the same follower numbers as celebrities, up and coming influencers can reach tens, or even hundreds of millions of people instantly.
That’s a scale of marketing that is simply unprecedented compared to the catwalks of New York and Milan.
Compared to any other kind of advertising, social media influencers have the most direct line of contact with potential customers – making them the perfect partner for fashion companies looking to promote themselves.
With so many influencers on social media with such a direct line of contact with the public, it’s a no-brainer for businesses looking to advertise their fashion lines.
The Problem of Payments
Some of the big challenges still include engaging well enough to get users to click through to the site, while also allowing users easy access to the specific products they want to buy.
The same challenge goes for influencer marketing and advertising, in general; there’s still a lot of friction separating the user from the products they’re seeing. One of the big ones is having a separate sign-in process in order actually to buy things.
Companies that do this are effectively throwing a spanner into their machine, and customers will walk away over going through an elaborate process of onboarding.
The other problem is of payments. Having an overly elaborate payment process, along with a lack of variety in how people can pay can be serious deal-breakers. That’s why we at Unlimint strive to offer customers with a seamless, versatile payment system that encompasses hundreds of commonly used local, and global payment methods.
Fashion is seriously riding the change in 2020, so why be against the wind?