Image source: Sid Jatia
When it comes to global luxury groups, it can be hard to see past the endless sparring between the industry’s biggest players, KERING and LVMH. But with the burst of digital making its presence felt from East to West, the current marketplace is more open than you might think. Today, a number of newer groups are vying for attention – and, with some big acquisitions and unique strategy under their belts, 2015 could be the year you hear less from KERING and LVMH and more from some of the following names.
Do you shop at Zalando? The retailer sells branded shoes and clothing to 15 European countries, and is the continent’s largest online fashion retailer. After a well-documented struggle last year, the online powerhouse is back on top: just last month, it reported its first full-year profit, leading to a sale of 17.9 million shares that are now trading 13 percent higher than their listing price. The share sale will increase liquidity in the stock, and boost chances for the Berlin-based retailer to join Germany’s MDAX index. But what’s next for Amazon Fashion’s European cousin?
Two major trends stood out at this year’s South by Southwest, Engagement and Relevance and here’s the lowdown on how they will impact brands in 2015.
Topics: millenials, sxsw, e-commerce, tech, mobile, Innovation, mobile commerce, technology, omnichannel, fashion, retail, Weekly Stories, mcommerce, fashion tech, ecommerce, Online Shopping, Retailing
When you go to Eva Chen’s Instagram, you receive the usual riot of colour-coordinated #shoesies, brunches and CTAs to buy carefully arranged products that you’d expect from your favourite fashion bloggers. Except Eva Chen’s actually an editor-in-chief – heading up Lucky magazine for two years this June, the stylish editor and prolific social media poster has taken the magazine into a new era. The key shift, for many, is the introduction of Lucky Shops – the e-commerce platform that now forms part of the Lucky Group alongside the magazine. When the announcement was made last Autumn to spin off from Conde Nast and join forces with BeachMint for a heavy focus on e-commerce, trendwatchers were worried. With other traditional media companies having tried and failed at e-commerce, where does the marriage of commerce and publishing stand in 2015?
French beauty retailer Sephora is gunning to become a forerunner in digital beauty retailing with the launch of an innovation lab and four new digital initiatives.
Topics: e-commerce, mobile, Innovation, mobile commerce, technology, omnichannel, fashion, social media, retail, beauty, Weekly Stories, mcommerce, fashion tech, mobile apps, instagram, ecommerce, Online Shopping, Retailing
As e-commerce makes the shift to mobile, fashion retailers aren’t planning on getting left behind. Indeed, smartphone app use among retail consumers has far exceeded expectations, with app use in-store or on-the-go fast becoming the norm for the average shopper: according to Cisco’s fifth annual retail survey, 55% of shoppers said they will use a retailer’s app for or during a shop. Here’s our pick of the top apps combining convenience, hyper-relevance and a stylish look on the current mobile marketplace.
No one shops completely offline anymore. Even if you don’t buy online, the choices you make are affected by information that is available via online channels. A recent report from Custora took a look at how we prefer to go about online shopping. We pulled out some of their most interesting omnichannel findings:
We’re not social: People aren’t interested in ‘shopping with friends’ (at least not virtually!): social media drives the fewest conversions - by far. This is true for sales generated on desktops, tablets and mobile phones alike. We don’t visit Facebook to shop, just like we wouldn’t want a generic department store café to be the venue for our birthday party.
We won’t cross-device with everyone: Many of the survey interviewees admitted that they don’t like making first purchases via tablets or mobile - apparently, the majority of us are only comfortable shopping via these two channels if we are purchasing via brands or retailers that we have used before (and feel we can trust). It seems that desktops act as a ‘first base’ for subsequent shopping via other channels.
We take ‘risks’ on a whim: Mobiles generate much lower conversion rates than desktops or tablets do - even though mobile browsing has experienced a substantial increase over the past two years. The average order value of orders placed via mobile phones is also much lower than that of tablets and desktops. People are still getting acquainted with the idea of purchasing through small screens; we browse eagerly while on the move, but making purchases via our phones often feels risky or unintuitive.
It therefore seems somewhat illogical that email marketing is the second-largest driver of mobile conversions. In fact, people purchase via email click-through on their mobile more than they do on their tablets or desktops - impulse shopping at it’s best, despite our reluctance to shop via mobile!
Perhaps there’s a sequence to it:
1. We enter into a relationship with a retailer or brand by stepping on the first base, the desktop.
2. If we like what we get, we may sign up to their online communications and visit their site directly to shop. We may even decide to go further and make a purchase from our tablet.
3. When we are in a trusting relationship with the brand or retailer, we may just go to third base and buy one of their products on impulse, on-the-go on our mobiles, or when enticed by their email marketing.
3. If all goes well, we’ll continue to use different channels and hence become cross-device customers. According to the Custora report, the average customer lifetime value of cross-device shoppers is much higher than that of individuals who shop via just one channel. Homerun for the retailer!
So it seems that the winners are those who cultivate the relationship with their shoppers to such an extent that they turn them into cross-channel shoppers. The only obstacle is finding out who these shoppers are and collecting data about them - join us in Milan for more on ominchannel retail.
Reported by Anna Abrell
During our latest meetup, Decoded Fashion’s showcase: Rising Social Discovery, we introduced three fashion websites that will captivate you, Polyvore, Lyst and Bib & Tuck. All three have made fashion more accessible to the online user, while also creating a fashion community where users can share styles and surround themselves with trustworthy fashion aficionados.
Polyvore, a fashion platform where users can mix and max their favorite items from any e-commerce site on the web, has grown quite a lot since it started in 2005, but co-founder Jess Lee (Skyping in above) said that collaborating with brands was one of the most influential moves. She explained that it has attracted more shoppers—around 20 million users monthly—along with valuable partnership that have contributed to its popularity. Building brand ambassadors was also stressed, and the company’s main focus is still to remain loyal to their customers and always show how important they are to them.
Lyst, which brings together hundreds of brands and retailers’ ecommerce sites into one place to make shopping more personalized, also stressed the importance of building partnerships, be it with brands or bloggers. Lyst has reached out to inspirational style celebrities and popular bloggers, such as Nina Garcia and Sincerely Jules. Vice President of Business Development Hilary Peterson advised that a partnership is always a great way to get started. If the option is there, take it. Lyst now has partners in over 120 countries, but Peterson noted that the main growth comes from mobile visits—exactly why the Lyst app drops in two weeks.
Bib+Tuck, launched in November 2012, relies on building customer loyalty rather than brand partnerships, as the site specializes in vintage resale. The site allows women to "shop without spending." How does this work? Users can post pieces they no longer want and sell them to other community members for Bib+Tuck currency, Bucks. Then, these Bucks can be used to buy a different item on the site. It’s a virtual clothes swap.
Since the site is still fairly new, their goal at this point is to create a brand identity and personality, understand who their customers are in order to target that specific user. Co-founder Sari Azout expressed their devotion to putting as much attention to the customers as to the company, making the customer feel like they belong to a community, not a marketplace.