The idea of remote shopping has always found the interest of designers and maisons ever since the first fashion catalogues were sent to customers and VIPs.
Since then, the Internet has taken over and brought fashion shopping to a new level: e-commerce is making rapid progress towards being just as effective as in-store purchasing.
Nowadays, offline and online retail are becoming increasingly connected:
E-commerce in the fashion world offers an integrated shopping experience that allows the purchase and interaction between brands and consumers across multiple channels. One of the most effective methods of an omnichannel strategy is the so-called “click-&-collect”, that allows customers to order products online, and then collect that product in a physical store. Another popular method of bridging the gap between online and offline is the QR code, which allows customers to scan it for more content directly on store.
Statistics show that e-commerce is now an essential tool for the fashion industry.
In 2020, the global market value of the e-commerce fashion industry was 752.5 billion USD, and it is expected to reach 1.0 trillion USD by the end of 2025. China is the leading region in the e-commerce sector (337.8 billion USD of the total market value) with the biggest growth in fashion (9.3% CAGR), followed by the USA (155.6 billion USD) and Europe (130.8 billion USD).
Purchasing power is shifting from the United States and Europe to China and Southeast Asia, so more established Western e-commerce players are looking for a new customer base in these new markets.
[Source: “E-Commerce Report 2021 – Fashion Statista”]
Consumers are influenced by a wide range of factors that lead them to prefer the online experience.
To mention some: online fashion stores offer products and services that customers can’t find in traditional stores, free shipping, efficient delivery services, and easy returns procedures.
One of the major trends in online fashion has been the growing need for personalization. Consumers expect some sort of personalization from online businesses so that fashion products can express their own style.
In response, fashion players turned to users’ browsing or purchasing history to provide a more personalized shopping experience.
Retailers are increasingly beginning to recognize the importance of building a community around their brand in order to get more engagement from it, especially on social networks. In fact, mobile shopping is one of the main driving forces of this market.
An important role on social networks is played by influencers and their unprecedent ability to reach and conquer a huge audience in a very short time. With fashion e-commerce, Instagram is the most influential platform, with apparel brands averaging 13.71 interactions per 1000 followers.
Mobile commerce and increased personalization are just two of the factors pushing fashion e-commerce forward. The landscape of e-commerce options is going to get richer and more wide-ranging in the near future.