One in three orders for e-commerce player Snapdeal was from the ‘fashion category’ in 2015. This includes goods like apparel, footwear and accessories. The company observed a 250 percent year-on-year growth in the category with users from Tier II cities vying for brands not available in their cities. Another e-commerce company Amazon Fashion also sees fashion as the fastest growing segment in India.
“The trend is not surprising. There is less penetration of brands in Tier II cities, which bring customers to us due to a wide assortment of brands,” said Rahul Taneja VP, Category Management, Snapdeal.
Taneja adds that fashion continues to be Snapdeal’s biggest category as frequency of purchase of apparel is higher than any other commodity. “Fashion encourages customers to come back to us,” he said.
Talking about the surging fashion market in the e-commerce space, Mayank Shivam, Category Leader, Amazon Fashion, India feels that fashion today, is not only restricted to the large metros, but has also captured the imagination of consumers in remote cities and towns.
“E-commerce is able to bridge the gap and bring fashion closer to consumers in smaller markets. Online stores also give consumers the convenience of accessing a broad selection of brands and styles across all price-points, all at one place and at the click of a button,” said Shivam.
So to keep the fashion-conscious consumer happy in 2016, e-commerce players are incorporating better and innovative strategies. Snapdeal, for instance, has got into a strategic partnership with Shoppers Stop, wherein digital marketplace through a flagship Shoppers Stop store was launched.
Customers ordering from Shoppers Stop store on Snapdeal can pick up the ordered products or get them delivered from the nearest Shoppers Stop store.
Amazon wants to invest in the fashion ecosystem, where they will bring local crafts closer to customers in the coming year. Like last year, Amazon will be making investments in editorials, guide-books and videos on latest trend and fashion to establish Amazon Fashion as a fashion destination. In addition, the company aims to empower consumers through detailed product/brand information, customer reviews, expert opinions, styling trends forecast so they can make the right fashion choices.
However, amidst all the competition, Digital wallet turned e-commerce firm Paytm has some different plans. For them, focus on unstructured category will rule the roost in 2016 as it did it 2015 along with brands. “There are many private players and SMEs in the market and interestingly consumers are willing to experiment. This will remain our focus in the coming year,” said Sudhanshu Gupta, Assistant Vice President Business, Paytm.
Clearly, the success mantra for e-commerce players seems simple. Offer the widest range of products and entice them with the best discounts. After all, a customer wants the best in quality and bargain.