Few industries move at the pace as that of the fashion business. Every season there is a rush to display key items on catwalks worldwide that will help set the tone for consumer buying habits for the months to come. While many of the top designers will make visually stunning articles of clothing that are worn by top models at Paris, New York, and London fashion shows, these designs are normally made more conservatively before they reach high-street fashion outlets, often taking key themes and transforming them into new designs for the masses.
While the world of fashion is dominated by big brands such as Gucci, Versace, and Dior, there is still room in the marketplace for smaller, independent fashion firms to enjoy success. This article is aimed at entrepreneurs who seek to start their fashion businesses. Some tips will be explored that will help improve the chances of your product range generating meaningful sales and profit streams.
Find your niche
Firstly, as a small fashion business, it is important to understand that you will not be competing directly with larger more established brands and fashion firms. The size and scope of your operations mean that you will need to carve out a smaller niche in the overall fashion sector. Finding a fashion niche that is right for your business and your mindset as a business owner can be challenging.
It is important to focus on products and designs that resonate with your tastes as a designer and form a range of items that abide by the overarching ethos of your business. For example, you may be an environmentally conscious entrepreneur and therefore seek to produce items that are made or recycled materials or come from sustainable sources.
Ideally, your product range will be consistent with your company values and will demonstrate your commitment to a cause or your company’s ethical values. Ensure that you test the demand for your products by holding consumer focus groups with your identified target markets to check for suitable demand before you start mass production.
Create a reliable delivery network
Once your business generates a suitable number of orders, you will need to ensure that you have a reliable delivery network to support rapid order fulfillment. Many fashion items, especially bulky products such as winter coats or larger handbags may be inefficient and expensive to ship via normal postal services. Consider using dedicated couriers and shipping firms such as Shiply when sending goods in volume to your customers.
Such firms can often offer shipping costs that are more competitive than traditional mail services, especially if you ship goods in a large vehicle that will make several deliveries along its route. Collaborating with established shipping or courier firms can be the ideal and cost-effective way to deliver products to your growing customer base quickly and efficiently.
Tips for your product website
As a brief final point, it is important to design a company website for your fashion products to support your business’s e-commerce arm. Ideally, this will use themes, colors, and design schemes that resonate with your target market and complement your product range. Ensure that each page benefits from fast loading times to encourage visitors to spend time looking at different parts of your site and that it can be easily navigated on a range of devices (including the smaller screens of smartphones). Add fashion blogs and regular content updates to encourage repeat visits from customers. In addition, make sure that your payment pages are encrypted so that the risks of cybercriminals intercepting or using customer financial information are minimized.