If you are to sell online clothes, you will have to contend with the fact that it is a business that is probably the most saturated in online selling. The competition in the market place is cutthroat as hordes of independent brands emerge and offer consumers an ever wider choice.
The bigger and more established fashion houses are not about to let up their grip on the market as competition heats up. They are pouring vast sums of money in marketing to ensure their market dominance does not diminish. So the question begs, how is an independent label to face up to this competition and survive? How can it grow success and increase market share?
It therefore follows that you will have to find creative ways to make your store stand out and also find a way to gain an advantage over like websites in order to stay competitive and profitable. As much as there are a myriad ways to increase online sales for an online clothing store, a good place to start is probably by approaching this topic in a fundamental way that solves frequent problems faced by customer shopping for clothes online.
(Read more about: How to Start a Successful Online Business)
The premise for this approach is that by solving these problems you should be able to increase your sales to a good degree.
Though this list is not anywhere near exhaustive, it does form the basis of a sensible starting point.
Below are a few ideas on common problems that need solving in the online clothing industry
- Solve the personal shopping experience
- Solve sizing problems
- Solve return problems
- Solve customer service issues
- Solve trust problems
Solving personal shopping experience
A typical shopping experience at the mall involves browsing shops, notably clothing and accessories stores, trying them on and making a purchase. However, the online experience is devoid of this experience. Most clothing brands sites are so bad that it is surprising that anyone ever buys.
Personalizing the shopping experience through use of technology based on buyers persona is key and is bound to set your brand apart. Personalization can take the form of look books and recommendations customized specifically to every customer who comes to your online store.
There is huge available data for purchase on buyer habits that you can leverage on to construct a recommendation system that will wow your customers. Furthermore this recommendation can be offered to visitors through analytics on their social media, browsing patterns and on likes and dislikes.
You will get them hooked because you would be playing with significant accuracy on their buyer persona.
Solve sizing problems
Amongst the leading factors in online shopping buying inhibitor, is the apprehension of buying items that you’re not sure whether the size will fit or not. Coupled with the dread of what a harrowing experience it might be trying to return to sender, which may also involve shipping that is enough to change the mind of the bravest buyers.
One solid way of solving this problem is for a store to embrace and invest in body scanning technology and integrate it in their online selling process. Somebody scanning players in the market are presenting innovative, practical and affordable solutions that allow the buyer to scan their body measurements and upload them to a cloud database that can be accessed by clothing brands to offer size options that would fit you like a glove. Search a company is Bodi.Me who offer free body scanning.
With the sizing problem out of the way the consumer feels it safe to order an item without worry of size and fit and you can be sure to see a spike in your sales.
3. Solve return problems
Product returns are costly to a company because of shipping. Returns stem from wrong sizing and wrong orders. If you can nail the sizing problem, you are halfway home as you innovate on how to prevent wrong orders saving cost while increasing sales
4. Solve customer issues
Customers will tend to lean more towards bigger brands even if it means paying more because their customer service seems to be more prompt and adept to solving their issues.
As a smaller independent brand, you save time and increase rate and speed of resolving customer problems by leveraging on social media and encouraging your customers to ask questions via Twitter or Facebook. This way you can respond promptly instead of wasting time via phone or emails. It’s a win win.
5. Solve trust problems
Buyers might stop from buying on your site due to fear of using their credit cards. A poorly built website lacking SSL (secure certificate) or lack of a dedicated processor could cost you loss of many a customer because they simply have misgivings as to how secure your site is.
To solve this, take the pains to invest building a professional looking store as you possibly can. Use credit card secure systems preferably with bank level security and be sure to let your customers know. This has a great impact on your sales because it builds trust and assurance to customers that your site is safe.
— The NP Group (@NPGroup) 19 de junio de 2017