Fashion and e-commerce: how to optimise your product catalogue

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Made up of both traditional retailers and pure players, the fashion sector continues to grow. According to the Boston Consulting Group’s report Dressed for Digital: The Next Evolution in Fashion Marketing, the fashion sector is expected to account for 25% of e-commerce in Western Europe by 2020.

Online sales in the fashion industry are currently growing three times faster than brick and mortar sales. The presence of online fashion retailers is multiplying, but not everyone benefits equally from the sustained growth. Consumers’ purchasing behaviour is constantly changing and increasingly needs to be personalised, posing a number of problems for the players.

To reach customers in the right place at the right time, online stores specialising in fashion must now offer a unique and high-quality shopping experience to attract buyers and meet their needs. This means adopting an all-inclusive strategy, multiplying contact points throughout the shopping journey and being present on as many online channels as possible, on all types of mobile devices and across borders.

In the fashion sector, an effective multi-channel strategy is essential, especially for high-end brands. M-commerce and webrooming are among the major e-commerce trends in the fashion sector, where purchasing habits vary from one country to another.

Nenad Cetkovic

COO of Lengow

Brands and distributors must therefore be reactive and agile, and offer a clear and comprehensive service to increase their revenues and limit returns. Read on to discover how to stand out in the fashion industry with your product catalogue.

Create a comprehensive and high-quality product catalogue

While the fashion sector booms, brands and distributors of clothes and accessories must ensure that their product catalogues are up-to-date and complete so they don’t miss out on sales.

Your product catalogue is essential to inform your customers about your product and its use, and to accompany them in their purchasing process (colour, size, cut, etc.) It’s also essential for managing the SEO of your products on marketing channels or acquisition and e-mail campaigns.

To provide a quality shopping experience for consumers, Lengow allows merchants to build an optimized, complete and error-free product catalogue to send across various marketing channels. When you add your product catalogue to our platform and match your fields with those required by Lengow, you will be notified if one of the fields is empty (product ID, title, category, price). If you don’t proceed to make any changes, these products will be automatically removed when your product catalogue is put online.

Make use of and enrich your product data

To evolve in the fashion sector means constantly finding new channels to explore. By distributing your products on generic channels (Amazon, eBay, Google Shopping, etc.) or marketplaces specialized in fashion (La Redoute, Zalando, Privalia, etc.), your activity reaches a larger audience and international markets. Through Lengow, you can distribute your products on sales channels in 42 countries. To help you make the right choice of marketplace, check out Lengow’s Marketplace Finder:

Marketplace finder

You can then enrich your catalogue in different ways, for example with translation applications or currency management applications available in our application library.

The enrichment of your product data also involves user generated content by your customers after having purchased your products and/or influencers. Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest are the channels to retrieve key information such as customer testimonials or product usage data. This allows you to introduce your brand to a new audience and expand your buying community. Platforms such as Olapic, Curalate and Bazaarvoice allow you to add this information directly within your e-commerce site, social networks, advertising campaigns, etc.

Adapt your strategy on marketing channels

Seasonality, new collections, commercial events (sales, Black Friday, Amazon Prime Day, etc.) – many factors mean fashion brands and distributors must regularly adapt their catalogue on marketing channels. To ensure the success of your e-commerce strategy, target products according to sales channel and adjust the distribution of your products according to performance or seasonality.

To ensure your product catalogue is managed efficiently, Lengow provides merchants with a range of functionalities, including automatic rules and exclusion rules based on performance criteria such as return on investment (ROI), sales generated, average CPC, revenue, etc. You can also set up custom labels on Google Shopping and Facebook to segment your products according to the objectives you have set.

Success in the fashion sector means, above all, being very responsive but also having a good knowledge of your product catalogue in order to be able to adapt it when necessary. This way, you can easily highlight your best-sellers and disable your least profitable products. By automating your product catalogue, you benefit from greater flexibility and save time, meaning you can focus on your e-commerce strategy.

To learn more about the online fashion industry, download our guide:

Fashion Sector

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Naomi Botting

Communications Project Manager - UK/NORDICS