How Live Shopping experiences are changing the Fashion Industry
From the Covid-19 pandemic to the advance of new technologies, the Fashion Industry has had to make a considerable shift to digital commerce in the past few years, and now Live commerce is becoming the centre of that change.
This new sales channel combines instant purchasing of a featured product and audience participation through a chat function or reaction buttons, and it’s transforming the retail industry and establishing itself as one of the major sales channels.
It has evolved rapidly in China, taking less than five years to develop and following this lead, Western brands, retailers, and marketplaces are establishing their own live-commerce events to promote their products, especially in the beauty and fashion industries:
In the beauty industry, swedish makeup brand CAIA Cosmetics has taken its first foray into live streaming back in October 2019, and while their live tutorials had an average viewing time of 11 minutes, with 60 percent of viewers “liking” the content and 17 percent interacting with the live chat, their first-ever live stream saw a conversion rate of five percent, higher than the brand’s average website conversions.
- In the fashion industry, the brand Nordstrom has started a dedicated live shopping channel last March 2021, which had huge global success. Transporting themes such as occasion styling, fashion trends, and 'the best of fashion' from their social media channels to the world of live shopping has enabled the brand to present them in a more engaging manner, taking questions from viewers and gathering feedback in real-time in a way that a “static” piece of content would never allow, all while being able to sell products in real time!
Some of the pioneering fashion brands of Live commerce experiences are Burberry, together with Estee Lauder, Giuseppe Zanotti, Stella McCartney, MCM, La Perla, and Stuart Weizman, who back in 2018, participated in Tmall’s Collection fashion show which was streamed on the Tmall website. The show was a “See Now, Buy Now” stream, meaning viewers could purchase the items going down the runway using their mobile phones.
These innovative shopping experiences can take a varied range of formats, from workshops with experts to talks with influencers. As a brand or business looking to integrate this channel to the already existing sales mix, there are a few points to consider, such as which format would work best for a specific target audience, as this could vary from a tutorial to an interview or a behind the scenes, as well as the type of product sold and what platform consumers are most active on. Although Generation Z and millennials are the dominant audience for this type of sales channel, live commerce is starting to attract middle-aged and more-senior consumers as well.
Live-commerce experiences can help brands, retailers, and marketplaces by accelerating conversion and by improving brand appeal and differentiation. It is an entertaining and
immersive experience, keeping viewers watching longer as well as quickly bringing the customer decision journeys from awareness to purchase because of time-limited offers.
In addition to this, this type of shopping experience can strengthen trust and brand awareness amongst existing customers as well as attract new ones.
As live commerce increases its reach, industries such as healthcare, engineering, finance and, in time, B2B sectors are likely to move in with this trend. Looking to the future of this sales channel, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) can make the shopping experience even more immersive and enable buyers to see a product from every angle.
The pioneering brands mentioned above have achieved extraordinary reach and boosted their sales, and the others wanting to follow this example will need to move quickly to design their own experiments to get the most out of this dynamic new channel.
(information sourced on mckinsey.com)
(Image 1: sourced on @caiacosmetics’ official Instagram)
(Image 2: sourced on nordstrom.com)
(Image 3: sourced on burberry.com)
(Image 4 and featured image: Photo by Andras Vas on Unsplash)