As technology continues to improve, so does industry and operation processes. Technological advancements have resulted in reduction in shipping fees, shortened shipping timelines, simplified the checkout process, and helped merchants meet consumers where they are most ready to make a purchase (Forbes, 2019). A key strength of technology is it gives consumers and competitors access to a wealth of information. Examples of information available include, but are not limited to manufacturing processes, level of sustainability, and the financial status of a company. The fashion retail is an industry that many are familiar with and provides a great example of the effects of technological change. A major contributor to the stark shift in the industry is “the rise of next generation Internet technologies commonly known as Web 2.0, such as video sharing, blogging, social bookmarking and social networking, and virtual communities (Brogi, et. al., 2013).
Over the last decade, there have been countless news reports of well-known retail giants filing for bankruptcy and closing their doors of brick and mortar establishments. Ecommerce is the underlying technological contributor to these drastic changes. E-commerce is “… a direct transformation from traditional shops to online shops, enabling location-independent shopping and services that are more convenient (Lin, 2008).” This shopping evolution has led to the demise of brick-and-mortar establishments altering their ability to successfully “deal with market uncertainty, disruptions, and improve supply chain performance (Choi, 2018).“ In short the strength of Ecommerce is trend based and mandates retailers streamline the product turn-around time from supply to the physical presence on retail floors.
Ecommerce rely on the reach of internet to sell goods directly to the consumer. The result, consumers has greatly increased purchases but also discard those same purchases more frequently (Lang & Wei, 2019). According to Deloitte’s the Omnichannel Opportunity study, people purchase double times when they shop using different channels including online and offline compared to those who only visit the brick-and-mortar stores (Deloitte 2014.) With access to everything at the touch of a button, and the tools to refine a product search, many consumers prefer online shopping. Consumers can find the perfect product and even do additional research on the product, production, product manufacturing and sustainability. This leads to asking the question: “how will technology continue to transform the fashion industry and the progression of e-commerce and online shopping? The graph below can help with providing an answer.
As depicted in the graph above, the steady increase in ecommerce sales will generate up to $713 billion in revenue. One of the key factors in this growth will likely be an increase in mobile shopping. This will lead to the evolvement and improvement of payment processing. There are a number of cutting-edge changes in Ecommerce fashion retail that will further reshape the shopping experience: the payment plan option (similar to layaway at brick-and mortar) at checkout, voice shopping is expected to increase as users become more reliant on their mobile devices. A call for greater accountability for company environmental friendliness and sustainability as this will greatly influence sales. Social media will increase as a marketing tool and overall involvement in the Ecommerce. Lastly, artificial intelligence will be used increasingly more to help improve the flow and processes of ecommerce (Finance Online). Technology has and will continue to transform every aspect of the fashion industry from design, production, marketing, to sales.
- Brogi, S., Calabrese, A., Campisi, D., Capece, G., Costa, R., & Pillo, F. D. (2013). The effects of online brand communities on brand equity in the luxury fashion industry. International Journal of Engineering Business Management, 5 Retrieved from http://lrc/proxy.abtech.edu:2048/login?url=https://search.proquest.com/docview/1524220126?accunti d=8387-
- Deloitte. The new digital divide. 12 September 2016. https://dupress.deloitte.com/dup-us-en/industry/retaildistribution/digital-dividechanging-consumer-behavior.html visited 15th May 2018.
- Lang, C., & Wei, B. (2019). Convert one outfit to more looks: Factors influencing young female college consumers’ intention to purchase transformable apparel. Fashion and Textiles, 6(1), 1-19. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s40691-019-0182-4
- Lin, K. (2008). E-commerce technology: Back to a prominent future. IEEE Internet Computing, 12(1), 60-65. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/MIC.2008.10
- Moisan, J. (2020, January 3). Five Predictions For E-Commerce In 2020. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesfinancecouncil/2020/01/03/five-predictions-for-e-commerce-in-2020/#69b39f369170
- Tsan-Ming Choi. (2018). Impacts of retailer’s risk averse behaviors on quick response fashion supply chain systems. Annals of Operations Research, 268(1-2), 239-257. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10479-016-2257-6