The state of the fashion apparel industry before it met Covid-19 in 2020 was far from spectacular. The impact of ongoing recessions, increased competition, new channels and an excess of real estate meant that offline retail had already experienced significant reduction in traffic and sales before the pandemic hit. And to say that Covid-19 didn’t improve the fashion landscape may just be the understatement of the year.
However, don’t bid farewell to high fashion just yet. The internet and other digital channels offer fashion retailers the potential to generate new revenue streams from younger consumers and diversify their sales assets. According to a McKinsey report, fashion retailers should invest more in their digital presence and move budgets to the online channel to bring high intent customers to their websites.
The report also adds that retailers should leverage this time as an opportunity to make digital the center of their operating model. Last but not least, it recommends accelerating personalization to enable high quality online interactions similar to the one provided in the offline store.
Meeting Customer Expectations in the Digital Sphere
Fashion retailers would be well-advised to note that building an online presence that spurs desired actions like purchases isn’t as easy as one might think. Customer expectations have reached an all-time high, and a simple purchase transaction just won’t cut it. This goes double for big budget consumers who are used to the pampering and undivided attention of salespeople at high-end offline stores.
That’s right, today’s consumers are more than aware that your competitors are just a click away. They want you to work for their money by attaching an experience to their transaction. The thing is that it’s not just the clothes that they want to buy when they land on a fashion website. They want to interact, belong, influence and bathe in the high-end glory of their favorite brands. At the end of the day, brands represent values and characteristics that those who buy from them want to embody.
Unfortunately, many fashion brands aren’t keeping up with customer expectations. They haven’t internalized the fact that today’s online consumers feel empowered. They’ve moved their online behavior from quiet observance to enabled activism.
To meet expectations, fashion brands must respond with new standards of service and a customer experience that delights. They need to embrace the latest technologies that enable instant availability and high levels of personalization. According to Deloitte, a brand that doesn’t successfully transfer its brand and values to the online space risks widening the digital divide and harming its brand and reputation.
This requires more than just digitzating the purchasing process. Fashion brands looking to provide a memorable, delightful online experience should aim for a cohesive, omni-channel experience. They should build a customer journey that prioritizes a long-term relationship by delivering a warm, personalized interaction that leans on previous experiences with the individual consumer.
Fashion Brands Can Bridge the Digital Divide with Consolto
Consolto’s simple-to-use videochat platform is the perfect solution for fashion brands looking to offer a personalized, fully branded, omni-channel buying experience to their customers. Easily embedded onto any page of a fashion brand’s website, Consolto makes it easy for website visitors to instantly kick off a live interaction with one of your online sales reps.
Visitors can choose from multiple communication channels -- SMS, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger or phone -- and immediately begin conversing with specialized representatives. Visitors also have the option of proactively setting up an appointment with one of your reps at a later time, if they don’t have the time or just don’t want to speak at that exact moment.
With Consolto, the fashion website is transformed into a powerful, highly effective sales channel that immerses your visitors in your brand. Leveraging an advanced backoffice boasting real-time metrics on individual behavior within the website, reps can identify high-intent visitors and engage them in a live chat session. Customer data is classified and stored in the system, so that relevant information on returning visitors is easily accessed and used to enhance the interaction with high levels of personalization.
Using this functionality, Consolto empowers fashion brands to provide a digital experience that mimics the in-store experience. Customers can ask questions about apparel and reps can recommend complementary items or different items completely. Highly customizable, Consolto enables you to tailor welcome messages, colors, style and CTA buttons to suit your brand's specific messaging and values. By combining extensive customization options with a highly personalized, 1-on-1 sales experience handled by real sales reps, it’s easier to build long-term relationships and increase customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Before You Go
In the volatile world of fashion, those who refuse to adapt are quickly left behind. With the inevitable shift to online consumerism only accelerated over the past year, forward-thinking fashion brands are building up a robust digital presence that meets customer expectations.
Consolto helps fashion brands deliver highly personalized, warm videochat interactions that are key to building long-term customer relationships. Website visitors can easily reach out if they have any questions, or just want fashion advice or purchasing recommendations.
Just like they would in an offline store.