The fashion industry is a massive one in the current global economy. According to the World Bank, the industry has a market value of $2.4 billion and it directly correlates to over 75 million globally dispersed jobs. With such a massive size that is continuously growing, its successes are vital to the health of the global market as a whole.
With this, fashion has become more and more popular over the last few decades and it’s easy to see why. In the age of the internet, many fashions and luxury items brands have found methods to reach target audiences with ease. Not only that, consumers of these products have found it easier than ever to purchase and receive their products because of online marketplaces.
But, with this ease of access, many wonder what innovations the fashion industry could use from this point onwards with the aid of the internet. Here is where the fashion industry has been with the help of the internet and where it could potentially be in the near future:
First, the internet has made the fashion industry much more accessible to buyers. It’s very common to see large brands within the fashion industry that are based all over the globe. Take, for example, Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy which is the largest fashion conglomerate in the world. LVMH is based out of France and is still able to make market-defining moves in the United States. In 2017 alone, LVMH was able to pull in around €42.6 billion due to its widespread success within the global fashion market.
This is the case for other brands like Versace, Gucci, Chanel, Hermès, and Dior. The internet’s accessibility to millions of potential clients through the use of online marketplaces has been cited as a major factor in the growth of these brands. Most of the purchasing of these brands’ products is directly through their commercial websites, but there are many outlets online that sell new or used brand items as well.
Many of these alternatives sites like Net-A-Porter act as a general collection of new branded items in the same way that Macy’s is for more basic clothing. At the same time, general online marketplaces like eBay have made the sale of used fashion pieces accessible to all holders of these products. With the help of the internet, consumers can buy glasses online that are of high quality and are difficult to find in common retail environments. This has rapidly expanded the economic depth of the fashion industry by allowing the continuous sale of fashion pieces despite their new or used quality.
Also, the burgeoning industry of social media advertising has made online marketing more effective than ever. It’s no surprise to see high-end brands like Supreme being advertised by social media influencers on sites like Instagram. This presence of luxury brands on social media allows for them to see more sales due to the added attention towards their brands.
General advertisements on Facebook and Instagram are a low-cost and easy-to-use method to get a brand out there that can potentially snowball into a great number of sales. Not only that, advertising of fashion brands is seen all across the internet to a noticeable extent. Around 1 in 4 posts on social media are considered to be advertisements and using this to the benefit of a luxury brand is the smart thing to do in this market to increase brand awareness.
As for the future relationship between the internet and the fashion industry, many new advancements within the realm of the internet could drastically change the fashion industry as we know it. For one, there is the Internet of Things (IoT).
The Internet of Things has been gaining popularity recently due to the potential effects it may have on online marketing. IoT is generally known as a connection of different pieces of technology on a network that works to connect into an easy-to-use product. A great example of this is a house with many different things like heating/cooling, security, and watering all taken care of with the ease of a single interface.
The IoT can be applied to the fashion industry by allowing the connection of relevant pieces of apparel to be accessed easily. Textiles that are embedded with heating, data collection, and lighting technology are all examples of things that can be brought together using an IoT.
With this being said, the fashion industry market will most likely continue to rise with the aid of a continuously growing presence of digital marketplaces that allow consumers to purchase high-end fashion pieces from the convenience of their own homes. While this is a reality at the moment, it can be expected that this industry will not only grow but advance in technological capabilities as well. With the widespread adoption of digital currencies, the industry could also benefit from completely digital transactions without the need for a third party.