Importance of eCommerce in the Fashion and Apparel Industry

Importance of eCommerce in the Fashion and Apparel Industry

Estimated reading time: 11 minutes, 24 seconds

Fashion retail is undoubtedly the most thriving industry not just in the UK but all across the globe. It is 2022 and if you still haven’t taken your fashion store online, then you’re clearly missing out on a lot – profits, brand value, online reputation, and whatnot!

Before we start discussing the importance of eCommerce for online fashion retailers UK, let’s survey the fashion retail industry by numbers. As per the available data, the CAGR (Compounded Annual Growth Rate) for fashion eCommerce — meaning its total market value and year-over-year rate of return — is predicted to increase by a whopping 10.3% by the end of 2023.

In simple words, fashion retail not only makes the largest B2C eCommerce segment across the globe but is also expected to touch nearly $900 billion in the coming years. This data clearly shows how fashion eCommerce is thriving and if you still haven't leveraged the power of eCommerce, you're making a grave mistake!

Fashion eCommerce Overview

We are living in 2022, where more people than ever are reaching out to online retailers for their fashion requirements. The gigantic amount of revenue being created by online fashion customers has allowed fashion retailers and businesses to grow and thrive taking the fashion eCommerce industry to a next level.

Statistics say that eCommerce has become an integral part of today's fashion industry. Notably, the global fashion eCommerce industry generated revenue worth $481 billion in 2018, which increased to $545 in 2019, and is expected to reach $713 billion by 2022. Looking at this data, it is not at all surprising that the industry is on its way to becoming a trillionaire industry very soon.

What Does Fashion eCommerce Look Like?

Why is fashion eCommerce thriving? What is one of the most successful sectors in the world? Why should you shift your brick-and-mortar fashion store to a reliable website? Why??

These are the questions that come to the mind of every fashion retailer who hasn't taken his business online yet. To answer these questions, let's have a look at the main characteristics of the fashion eCommerce that makes it a leading sector in the UK market —

Excellent Presentation

Presentation refers to the outlook of a fashion eCommerce website. Just like a stylish and well-maintained physical store attracts more and more customers, the design of an eCommerce website also acts as a lifeline of the business. It not only has to be easy to use and navigate, but it also needs to stand apart from its competitors and be aesthetically pleasing as well.

Customer Service that Excels

The majority of the successful online fashion retailers combine their customer service and promotions. By doing this, they create a long-lasting brand value and earn the loyalty and trust of their customers.

Loyalty Schemes

Clearly, the cleverest way to increase brand loyalty — reward customers who visit your store again and again. Loyalty schemes are an important fashion eCommerce characteristic. Special discounts, coupons, exclusive offers, freebies, etc. are commonly used strategies for building a loyal customer base.

Alternative Marketplaces

The most successful fashion eCommerce brands offer more than just one way to purchase from them. Not only their official website, but they also allow alternative options like shopping via Instagram, Facebook, Amazon, eBay, and so on.

Live Chat and Support

The best way to get in touch with customers and provide them with a smooth and hassle-free shopping experience.

eCommerce Automation

eCommerce automation is driving the fashion industry to new heights. It helps in increasing the efficiency of the business by automating the repetitive task, lowering the operational cost, and boosting the RoI, all at the same time. Read more about how eCommerce automation can revolutionise your business.

Importance of eCommerce in the fashion and apparel industry

The concept of eCommerce has revolutionised the fashion industry in more ways than you can imagine. Not only does it allows customers to shop from the comfort of home, but also makes sure their favourite brands reach their wardrobe in a convenient way. There are many studies and researches that show that apparel sales on eCommerce sites have increased beyond the expectation outperforming sales of all other categories.

Importance of eCommerce in the fashion and apparel industry

Supports Globalisation

The internet has made the world a small and easily accessible place. It has made long-distance communication faster, cheaper, and more reliable. Today, the internet allows businesses to maintain a website and reach out to customers spread all over the world. Not just domestic, but eCommerce allows businesses to operate on a global level.

Fashion Giants Leveraging eCommerce

Fashion giants, who are already at the top of the industry, are leveraging the power of eCommerce to maintain their position and brand value. They understand the value of eCommerce and hence, maintain their official websites to make sure their customers stay intact with their business. Leading global giant Nike has experienced a 30% growth in its total sales, all thanks to eCommerce. Similarly, Debenhams, a leading department chain in the UK, saw a 40% increase in its online sales. Not only these two, but many more leading UK businesses have seen significant growth in sales after establishing themselves online.

E-business in Emerging Fashion Businesses

eCommerce is not only limited to the big fashion giants like Nike and Debenhams. It is supporting the emerging fashion businesses at a huge level. It's worth noting that the growth rate of newly established online fashion stores is much higher than the growth rate of newly established brick and mortar fashion stores. The reason is global exposure, which is easily achievable with eCommerce.

All in all, eCommerce is the driving force in the fashion world. Today, no one talks about the conventional ways of managing and marketing fashion businesses. Everything is happening online!

A few years back, customers had a point of preferring offline fashion stores because they were not able to try and test the products online. But with the arrival of advanced technologies like Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality, everything has become possible. Today, customers can not only find a huge variety of products online, but they can also try them using VR technologies.

Steps to Success in the fashion industry

As you can see from the stats, eCommerce is the key to success in the world of fashion. But how? How to get started? How to run an online fashion business that helps you make huge profits, gain higher RoI and build a long-lasting reputation in the hearts of customers? Here is your answer!

Steps to Success in the fashion industry

Following are the necessary steps to achieve success in the fashion industry:

1. Design a Conversion-Driven Fashion Website

The very first step towards attaining success in the fashion eCommerce industry is designing a conversion-driven website. Setting up a good website doesn't mean a site with attractive themes and graphics, instead, it means having a website that not only looks outstanding but is also very functional.

There are multiple eCommerce design factors that you need to consider for building a fully-functional and high-quality online fashion store. Successful fashion brands and businesses are great at providing their customers with an easy-to-use, attractive and efficient site that loads in a blink of an eye.

We recommend following the website design best practices for building an efficient website. Below are some website design tips to help you build a high-converting fashion website:

  • Offer easy website navigation
  • Include updated product pages
  • Make sure your site loads within 3 seconds
  • Use proper sizing guides
  • Use high-quality and optimised product photographs
  • Write proper product descriptions
  • Include honest reviews
  • Use VR try-on technology to help customers

2. State-of-the-art eCommerce Marketing Strategies

No matter how amazing your products are and how wide your range of products is, if you don't know how to market your products, everything is useless. Marketing is the most important part of fashion eCommerce. Below are some tips to amplify your marketing efforts:

  • Cross-Sell & Up-Sell
  • Sell On Social Media Platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, etc
  • Use paid ads
  • Offer special deals and discounts
  • Target your audience with long-tail keywords

3. Use Email Marketing Automation To Engage Your Customers

Emails are undoubtedly the best way to reach your customers directly in their inboxes. It is a great way to have one-to-one communication with your audience and make them feel familiar with your business. Not only does it help in building stronger customer-business relationships, but also helps in boosting your sales and conversions. As per the data, email marketing automation can help in increasing ROI up to 44%.

4. Choose the Right eCommerce Platform

There comes the make or break factor to your fashion eCommerce business. The success of your online fashion store depends greatly on the eCommerce platform it is built upon.

There are multiple factors that need to be considered at the time of selecting the right eCommerce platform. Before investing your hard-earned money and time into an eCommerce platform, we recommend conducting in-depth research and analysis to select the right fit for your business. Below are the questions you should ask yourself while evaluating an eCommerce platform:

  • Is the platform easy to use?
  • Is it secure and reliable?
  • Does it provide reliable technical support?
  • Are there reporting and analytics features?
  • Does it integrate with other eCommerce and social media platforms?
  • How many payment options does it provide?
  • Does it offer multilingual support?

5. Offer Reliable Customer Support

If you want your customers to return to your fashion store again and again, then you need to provide them with a laid-back shopping experience. The fashion business needs to be very communicative as there are lots of questions that arise in the minds of customers while shopping apparel online. You must provide your customers with a reliable customer support service so that they can shop in a relaxed manner. Live chat and social media support are two of the most fruitful ways of offering excellent customer support.

6. Ensure Platform Security

When you run your business online, you don't merely think about returns and conversions all the time. Here, you also have to think about the safety and security of your business. Always remember that you're operating in a highly competitive environment that is also prone to cyber crimes and security breaches. Hence, it is extremely important to maintain the safety and security of your website. For this, make sure that the eCommerce platform you're using is ISO and PCI-DSS compliant. This not only protects your website but also protects your customers from cybercriminals. The powerful security features of a website make sure that the private data (credit card information, email addresses, personal details, etc.) entered by your customers doesn't reach the wrong hands.

7. Provide Enough Payment Options

Lack of enough payment options is one of the major reasons that contribute to shopping cart abandonment. You can significantly increase the conversion rate while decreasing the cart abandonment rate by providing your customers with multiple payment options. Instead of only accepting typical credit card payments, allow your customers to pay via other options like PayPal, Stripe, Apple Pay, online wallets, and more.

Conclusion

With a global market worth of $759.5 billion in the year 2021, fashion retail is the number 1 eCommerce industry not just in the UK, but in the whole world. Believe it or not, in the next five years, the industry will touch a mark of $1.0 trillion and more.

So, for eCommerce fashion retailers UK, it's high time to become a part of this booming industry. Once you get a foothold in this sector, nothing can stop you from becoming the business you've always dreamt of.

We have discussed everything you need to know about fashion eCommerce with the hope to make you understand where this industry is heading. For more information or any kind of assistance, feel free to reach out to us. Whether it is building a state-of-the-art fashion website for high conversions, or implementing powerful marketing strategies, we can help you become the next big name in the industry. Contact RVS Media today!

Download this Guide