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The online apparel retail market in America has seen a steady rise in sales in the year 2017 and are set to take share from their brick and mortar rivals in the coming year. A total of 21% of retail sales for the year 2017 came from online purchases while ~76% came from brick and mortar stores. Nearly 7% increase in online sales has been observed which makes up for around 46 billion dollars!


Why though Why are we observing such a trend though? The latest reports suggest that Americans are growing more and more comfortable with buying clothes online. While earlier this segment was better suited for brick and mortar set ups — where people could try clothes on and feel the material, online retailers are now offering similar provisions of try at home/exchange/return. This makes online purchases a better option. C’mon, who doesn’t want the convenience of getting things delivered at their doorstep? Moreover, shoppers are not just buying basics anymore. The American shopper is social, fashionable and image conscious. Categories like customised clothing, tailored clothing, special occasion and sleepwear are all shifting base to the online arena.

The online advantage Physical retailers are definitely facing harder times than before with the apparel industry offering a lot more options like online purchases, buy, rent and resell other than a regular brick and mortar store. Diversity of options leads to a reduce in share of a single type of business. However, being online offers the advantage of adapting to an ever changing environment; a


slightly tweaked business model and you can adapt to the new market demands.

The challenge Online retailers will have to get more innovative with time as some trends suggest that running an online apparel store will get more expensive. Shoppers now want to try on clothes before they purchase. A lot of them buy multiple items but return most of them. Nearly 43% of times, apparel is returned. This incurs heavy costs and online retailers need to come up with business models to ensure they don’t run into losses in keeping up with such trends. Brick and mortar shops don’t deal with returns the way online retailers do.

Trends to look out for As an online business owner, following trends should be kept in mind while evolving as a business: 1. Personalised experiences: Everybody wants to be unique these days or express who they are through what they wear. Customisation offers just that. Stores are gradually adding sections where customers can decide what kind of print/design they want on the items they purchase. 2. Smart online stores: Is your store offering suggestions to users based on their purchase history? Is it easy to navigate through your store? Does your site render well on smaller devices? Is the check out process as automated and easy as possible? Keep these things in mind if you want people to buy from you. 3. Unisex trend: A lot of consumers are inclining towards comfort more than following the ever changing fashion trends. This means there’s going to be a rise in demand for products like hoodies, canvas shoes, yoga pants etc. 4. Smart customers: Customers are becoming more and more tech savvy and well informed. They are going to seek authenticity in products now more than ever. Have you added good quality images of your products and product reviews to your site? Are you delivering the quality you promise to deliver? 5. What’s your story: A great way to connect emotionally with your potential buyers is to have a great story behind your business. Many businesses are now using this as a marketing strategy to leverage customers’ EQ to their advantage.

Apparel Retail Trends  

Are you running an online apparel store? Do you know the latest trends doing the rounds in the apparel retail sector? Read on to find out. V...

Apparel Retail Trends  

Are you running an online apparel store? Do you know the latest trends doing the rounds in the apparel retail sector? Read on to find out. V...

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