Speaking about the company's relationship with Shipwire, Ryan Babenzien, Founder, says, "They're better at forecasting with us than we are sometimes ourselves. They make us get better at forecasting, so that's been a really helpful relationship."View the Video
Fulfilling orders from its remote headquarters in Ibiza limited Pacha's ability to grow. Operations were slow and expensive. By outsourcing shipping to Shipwire's network of global fulfillment centers, the company reached new markets and saw a huge increase in sales volume.Read the Case Study
The evolution of fashion styles secures a unique relevance for the apparel and accessory industry. According to Statisa, “This particular industry has short product life cycles, vast product differentiation and is characterized by great pace of demand change coupled with rather long and inflexible supply processes.”
E-commerce has contributed considerable profit to the apparel and accessory industry. Forecasts indicate that 10 percent of apparel sales in the US (the largest apparel market) will be generated online by 2017, up three percent from what was reported in 2008. However, retailers have only recently begun to explore the potential profits that e-commerce offers the industry, leaving open significant potential for further growth and innovation.
Unlike industries wherein profits are consistently secured by a few major brands, companies within the apparel and accessory industry work under equal pressure to maintain their market share and adapt to the changing demands of consumers, which leaves the door open for new companies to make themselves known.
Statisa reports that “The global apparel market has been shaped by three contrasting regional movements – robust growth in emerging markets, fragile recovery in the US, and a sharp slowdown in Western Europe. The global apparel market is always changing, attempting to adapt to customer trends and new technology that will allow the consumers shopping experience to be more enjoyable and ergonomic.”
This knowledge suggests that e-commerce retailers should focus on maximizing sales in lucrative markets while seeking to expand into multiple markets in order to remain stable during a potential downturn or lag in a given region.
In addition to regional growth patterns, it is important to watch target audiences for signs of change. Historically, women have been the primary target audience in the apparel and accessory industry, but in recent years, e-commerce sales show that menswear has been on par with womenswear. According to the New York Times, Euromonitor calculated that “online sales of men’s clothing accounted for 5.1 percent of total retail sales last year…with women’s clothing, at 5.6 percent.”
This information suggests that growth potential exists in menswear, and that sales will likely be captured by e-commerce companies that recognize and cater to men’s shopping preferences and behaviors.
Jose Neves, chief executive at FarFetch, explains men’s shopping behavior as: “less impulsive, more crowd-averse, [and] brand loyal.” Thus, the key to growing sales in menswear relies on brand satisfaction, which is based on image, quality, and a consistent experience.
E-commerce retailers can build a reputable, consistent shopping experience for customers in a number of ways. Online stores that consider details such as easy navigation, 360-degree product viewing capabilities, in-store pick-ups and returns, shipping deals, simple checkout processes, and great mobile applications stand out and are effective in capturing sales because they make shopping easy.
Demonstrating consistency in the buyer experience helps establish loyalty, which translates to repeat sales. This is especially important because “Growth is coming mainly from existing customers, who are spending more money online, rather than from new shoppers,” according to Practical Ecommerce.
Women’s Sportswear and Accessories
As women increasingly view sportswear as a fashion trend as well as a “lifestyle” trend, the demand for women’s sportswear within the apparel and accessory industry is growing. According to NPD, activewear accounts for 16 percent of the total apparel market and is largely driven by trends like wearing leggings and sports bras not only to go to the gym, but for everyday activities.
Given that the trend toward activewear that can be worn outside the gym, there exists an opportunity to innovate on style and functionality, which that applies to clothing as well as accessories such as bags, sunglasses, shoes, and sweat bands.
The increasing interest in activewear is good news for e-commerce retailers. Activewear is easy to sell online: clothing is often flexible and offers an easier fit, and limited sizes (S/M/L, etc. rather than a complete numerical system) mean fewer SKUs need to be stocked.
Shipwire offers enterprise-grade storage and fulfillment solutions for brands looking to expand their global footprint. Our growing network of global fulfillment centers are powered by a state-of-the-art software platform that integrates with 90+ top shopping carts and marketplaces.
As online apparel and accessory sales grow, the demand for apparel fulfillment services and apparel drop shipping solutions increases.
By using Shipwire for your apparel fulfillment, you can:
Types of products and integrations
Shipwire has helped many apparel and accessory companies with their global order fulfillment and shipping needs and has worked with products including, but not limited to:
To discover more fulfillment resources, explore some of our topic-based collections or browse our resource library.