The digital transformation in the fashion industry is not a temporary hype, but has long since become reality in the world of fashion. Digitalisation has changed shopping habits, which in turn forces suppliers to adjust to constantly changing criteria. The exponential growth in the e-commerce sector already before, but especially during the Corona crisis shows that innovation and technology are not a luxury but the basis for success.

Digital and individual
The more tech-savvy the customers, the higher the demands on fashion providers to adapt to their mobile lifestyle – smartphones or tablets are a matter of course in everyday life. Consumers have become accustomed to being able to shop online at any time, easily and conveniently, and are increasingly expecting personalised offers. Communication with consumers is an important aspect – even in the digital world, the customer wants to feel perceived as a human being. The better the supplier responds to the buying habits, the more individual he can tailor the offer and thus the shopping experience for the customer. The optimisation and digitalisation of processes increases efficiency and improves customer retention – interactions with customers become more personal and direct.

Digital and regional
Digital and regional doesn’t have to be a contradiction in terms – the crisis has shown that "Support your locals" is essential. There is a trend to combine digital browsing with stationary shopping which retailers should take into account. Especially in the current situation, the reluctance to stroll through the shops is still very high. Shoppers who look for something in particular tend to browse the websites of the local retailers before making their way downtown. Those suppliers who present their products online in an attractive fashion and offer Click & Collect will have a clear competitive advantage.

Visual presentation
The visual presentation of the portfolio is thus becoming increasingly important in order to offer customers a shopping experience directly on the online platform. High-quality photos, many different views, zoom options, e.g. to assess fabric quality, detailed product information and filter options as well as "shop the look" recommendations can make all the difference. Attractive, user-friendly presentation means better customer loyalty – time-consuming searches, poor images and filter options that are too general often lead to abandoned shopping carts.

Safe shopping
Safety is an important aspect - online and physically. Nowadays, a well thought-out hygiene concept is taken for granted in brick and mortar retail – data security for mobile payment is just as essential. An integrated business software enables retailers to make payment processes secure and convenient for both sides.

The fact is that we are in the middle of a decisive era, both for brick and mortar retail and for e-commerce. Also in the fashion industry, the crisis caused by COVID 19 has accelerated the digital transformation. The way forward in order to make progress and be able to turn this social and technological upheaval into a chance is to keep moving in this direction – with a view to react faster to new trends and customer requirements.

At our top-class event DIGITAL FASHION DAYS 2020, we provided a platform for future-critical topics and pathbreaking strategies. With regard to digitalisation, the focus was on the lessons learned from the current situation. We have already started to plan the DIGITAL FASHION DAYS 2021 – watch this space!

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