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Apparel: The Current Driving Force of E-Commerce

The e-commerce industry has gone through a lot of changes over the last decade. If you own or manage an online store, you'll want to learn more about how apparel currently acts as the driving force behind e-commerce success. What you learn could help you make smarter decisions that lead to more sales.

Apparel Leads in E-Commerce Sales


Not surprisingly, electronics have traditionally been the most popular retail items sold online. During the early 2000s, many of the people willing to shop digitally were interested in purchasing new technology at low prices.

E-commerce has changed a lot since the 2000s, though. In 2015, the amount of money online shoppers spent on apparel surpassed the amount they spent on electronics. During the last quarter of 2015, consumers bought $17.2 billion worth of clothing from online stores while they purchased $16 billion worth of electronics.

Most experts believe that this trend will continue, even though 2015 wasn't a banner year for clothing retailers. Many stores were desperately trying to convince shoppers to spend more money on clothes. Most people, however, decided that they would rather spend their money taking vacations and eating at restaurants. Despite this choice, clothing still managed to beat electronics in the e-commerce sector.

Private Label Clothing Attracts Customers

Choosing what types of clothing to sell online could determine whether your business succeeds or fails. Currently, private label apparel attracts shoppers who want to look stylish without spending more money than necessary.

Private label apparel gives you the chance to put your brand directly on the clothes you sell. The name not only assures quality but acts as an advertisement that can bolster future sales.

Areas Where Apparel Retailers Could Improve

E-commerce sites have obviously done a good job of attracting shoppers. There are, however, some areas where apparel retailers could improve. By putting more effort into these areas, they could potentially earn more money while giving their customers more satisfying experiences.

A high rate of returns is probably the largest problem that online apparel retailers face. An estimated 28 percent of sales get returned by customers. This puts a significant burden on retailers, especially when they provide free shipping and handling.

Curbing returns relies on finding more effective ways for customers to choose sizes when shopping online. Many stores simply do not provide reliable ways for shoppers to determine what sizes they should buy. If you tell a customer that pants have a 32-inch waist, but it actually measures 30 inches, then you can expect to lose money on returns.

Of course, it isn't always the seller's fault. Sometimes people buy several sizes so they can choose the one that fits best. You could charge customers for shipping and handling, but that would give your competitors an edge. Numerous companies are trying to figure out better ways to help people shop. So, while cutting services may look like the answer, it may instead drive away shoppers.

The Apparel Logistics Group (TALG) offers a variety of services that can improve the relationship between your e-commerce store and shoppers so that your bottom line doesn't suffer. Request a free consultation to learn more about how TALG can make your online store more profitable.

Posted: 9/22/2016 11:23:27 AM by Global Administrator | with 0 comments


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