Technology has reshaped many fields in business and fashion is one of them. Fashion and retailing industry have found a driving force in technological advances. Today, there is a lot of awareness in this industry about how growth rates can be doubled while giving back to the environment.
Technology is more accessible to small businesses, making it easy to know a customer’s lifecycle, engagement rates for your brand and repeat customer rates. You are a well-informed business, and you make decisions that are backed by solid statistics. Processes are also getting faster with the help of technology.
For example, there are digital pattern libraries that allow free access to downloadable patterns without putting high price tags on them. This makes the fashion industry move towards the long-awaited sustainable model.
“The traditional method of communicating with manufacturers is to send a physical copy of a pattern – usually on paper and with the associated risks of loss and damage – whereas digitizing patterns means an instant database of design knowledge,” – Alexa Wall, founder of Xandra Jane.
Here are some of the most important things the technology is creating to make the fashion and retail industry more efficient:
The materials technology is having a huge impact on the garments market. For example, at the Met Gala in 2016, Marchesa and IBM created a dress that lit up in the colors of the views expressed by viewers through their tweets!
This collaboration was just the beginning. We have now witnessed a trend of using technology to make cool new materials for making apparel. Sustainably sourced dresses are the new topic in the market. Silk inspired by spider webs and soybean fabric should be the terms you will be hearing more and more in the coming years. The shift to ‘eco-luxury apparel’ has been made possible by technology.
Animal rights activists have campaigned tirelessly about ethically sourced leather and fur. Brands like Leather skin shop are making synthetic leather goods look gorgeous and fashionable, thanks to technology. The days of ruthless animal abuse is gone because it is possible to create animal-free leather. Green fabrics have debuted on many fashion runways, with breathable and non-toxic dresses made out of pineapple leaves and algae biomass.
Fashion retailers are now choosing to invest in technology that customizes the shopping experience for customers. Customers love it when you talk to them and make them feel truly valuable. Technology makes it possible to go that extra mile and design customized experiences. You get the gifts of customer loyalty and returns.
The best thing about machine-learning and artificial intelligence (AI) powered software is that they record customer buying patterns. They anticipate the customer needs and then prompt you to take the necessary measures. Store staff can not only fulfill the customer need but also impress them by designing a personalized experience.
Fashion brands can get more conversions and customer loyalty by investing in technology that reshapes the way a customer deals with retail. Moreover, you have an instant competitive advantage.
Internet of things (IoT):
One of the best opportunities for the fashion industry lies in the internet of things. This is a groundbreaking technology that mechanizes shopping experience by connecting everyday objects to the internet.
This means that a drastic change will occur in the retail shops. Statistics indicate that 70 percent of retail decision makers are ready to adopt the Internet of Things into the market. Confusion is minimized when apparel itself is capable of correcting your sizing and buying choices.
NADI X is an activewear brand that uses built-in sensors to help the user find the size that truly belongs to their body type. IoT apparel is the new entry in the market that uses sensors to make the apparel come alive and help you choose. You don’t have to waste hours in the fitting rooms when the technology is there to guide you.
Smartphones have made internet access easy and cheap for the common man. Brands that are not using mobile for reshaping customer experiences are missing out on a lot of customers. The Internet is readily available due to smartphones. Many times, the customer is standing in the store and going through the store app to look for in-store discounts.
Fashion brands can make many changes by using mobile wallets, apps, payment gateways, and discount points. If you target Millenials, your e-commerce shopping can grow manifolds because Millenials prefer shopping online, rather than going to a physical store. Just a tap on the phone or the click of a button makes shopping the easiest task of the day.
Make sure your website is optimized for mobile, and you have a store that works smoothly when opened in any mobile device. Social media apps like Instagram are also enabling widgets that let the customer buy directly through the photo. Instagram shopping makes the customer like and directly head to the checkout.
The technology that created the famed Bitcoin is now seeping into every sector of business. The blockchain is a decentralized digital platform that enables to ensure data security for your clients. Records cannot be altered once fed to the Blockchain system.
The global Blockchain market is going to reach $339.5 million according to Statista and will grow into $2.3 billion by the year 2020.
The use of this technology in fashion is to verify and cross-check the source of a garment. There are going to be no lies in the store about the originality of a garment. Microchips can be used which can tell a customer the source and origin of the material. This information can be read on a smartphone that can detect that information through QR code or a sensor.
Digitalization has changed the fashion and retail industry, and retailers must walk in pace with this advancement. New technologies like AI, IoT, and VR, are going to help you close more deals and impress more customers. Today’s customer is savvier with tech, so you have the edge over competing brands that are having a hard time moving on from brick and mortar stores.
Are you ready to embrace the transformation?
About Ashley Rosa: Ashley Rosa is a freelance writer and blogger. As writing is her passion that why she loves to write articles related to the latest trends in technology and sometimes on health-tech as well. She is crazy about chocolates. You can find her at twitter: @ashrosa2.