It was a herculean task for fashion brands to understand what shoppers want and what products they desire during the last year. They tested waters by introducing various new collections on various platforms, but it didn’t match their expectations. This led to the dumping of the already manufactured clothes, which caused huge losses to brands and caused serious damage to the environment. As a result, apparel companies turned to fashion-techs to develop solutions that could allow them to provide the latest fashion to their buyers and also help them to reduce overproduction. Likewise, the custom shirt design software offers customization solutions to clothing brands and lets them design their apparel according to their preferences and personalities. And since customers will be designing their clothes, they will be more attached to their clothes, and there will be fewer chances to throw away their apparel. Thus, help fashion companies to manufacture what customers want and control their production.
Shirts Design Software Helps Apparel Brands Tackling Overproduction Problems
In the last year, consumer preferences have transformed drastically. They demand a sustainable –yet trendy fashion collection that doesn’t harm anybody, whether we talk about the environment or revenue of the fashion industry. They are eager to align with brands that can satisfy their dynamic and fashion sense. For several brands, it is no longer about whether their sustainable clothes would sell or not. We have seen in the past that traditional selling models through multi-brand retailers or mass-production have struggled to survive in a bleak COVID-19 landscape.
Similarly, the traditional seasonality model is fading away as buyers are inundated with the new looks across the various apparel brands. Though, in the past, it has been invariable advantageous to the big players; however, in the changing landscape, the trend seems to have lost its ground. It is documented that more than 100 billion articles are written about clothes produced every year and how are they causing a negative impact on the environment. Many experts have highlighted that nearly20 per cent of clothes remain unsold. Thanks to problems with accurate inventory estimation, which were exacerbated during the pandemic, brands regularly overproduce. And excess clothes are often discounted, landing in a landfill if never sold. In addition to being bad for the environment, overproduction means losing money on the unsold product. Therefore, fashion brands are increasingly seeking interest in a solution that helps them counter the overproduction problem.
Consequently, it gave rise to new business models to come into the picture and help companies scale up their business. Pre-order is one such sales model which is gaining immense traction from buyers as it enables them to view the product on digital portals, and if they like it, they can order it. Pre-orders are gaining momentum – and advance images of influencers wearing digital versions of the season’s must-have new fashion may hold the key to effective marketing.
The new-age business model allows buyers to pay upfront for the products they receive days or weeks later. Though it may sound something similar to fashion shows and other events hosted by the leading fashion brands, this approach is gaining a whole new meaning in the digital era. Various luxury brands, such as Moda Operandi and Telfar, have already championed this approach online and has doubled down on its trunk show business during the pandemic, hosting a series of virtual shopping events where clients enjoy early previews of collections and interact with designers in real-time. The on-demand fashion is helping brands to lure in more clients as they can now allow buyers to shop from the virtually displayed collection lines personally. In fact, big retailers, such asNet-a-Porter, have earned a fortune with their new revolutionary sales approach. Last February, cult UK retailer LN-CC began working with brands, such as Di Petsa, to produce on-demand pieces. Brands, such as The Vampire’s Wife, Paskho, Ultracor, Khaite, Kitri, and Misha Nonoo, had already started offering pre-orders directly to their customers. These brands use pre-order to reduce production costs and waste, achieve profitability, strengthen their DTC sales and boost their sustainability bona fides.
The new sales method is crucial in grappling with the rising concern for overproduction in the fashion industry. Besides, Mckinsey had predicted in 2019 that made-to-order and pre-order would become the mainstream along with the shift to Direct-to-Consumer (DTC) model. And this all is coming true, especially in the unpredictable and unprecedented times, where the pandemic continues to strike back again and again.
The brands mentioned above have either adopted the pre-order sales model as their sole business strategy, or it is a supplementary approach for some time. But it is a good start to drive away from a traditional business model that was doing no good to either fashion houses, buyers, or the planet. Moreover, this model has helped many apparel companies to garner more revenue than they could have ever expected in a short span. Here are the examples of Prabal Gurung and Antonio Berardi, who attribute 20-25 per cent of their revenue to pre-order and made-to-order sales in the last one year. While the broader impact of pre-order on the environment is harder to estimate, and pre-ordered products may still end up in the trash, the amount of unsold stock that goes straight to a landfill can be cut to effectively zero.
Let us look at the numerous factors that prompt fashion brands to adopt a pre-order sales approach to gain maximum traction in the industry:
Offers Rewarding Incentives for Businesses
Incorporating a pre-order sales approach enables retailers and manufacturers to collate useful data and use it to make more informed decisions. It can help brands establish themselves better in the ever-evolving landscape. Besides, the strategy can also help in investing better during seasonal purchases, leading to higher sell-throughs and less unsold inventory at the end of the season. It helps brands plan better for the upcoming projects and gain consumer insight; instead of just dominating it. Additionally, brands have some spare time before they immediately go back to manufacturing the ordered product.
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