Have you ever considered quitting your day job to pursue a career in the fashion industry? The following are things that you need to do to ensure that your online fashion business store is successful.
1. Have realistic goals
You need to be realistic and practical about the reason why you are establishing the business in the first place. It is easy to lose sight of the bigger picture, considering that the fashion industry is a lucrative industry packed with travel, exclusive events, creativity, and beautiful people. But in reality, it is not always about the glitz and the glam. For the most part, you will be busy managing inventory, managing your employees, searching for sales and marketing opportunities, finding and generating press, coordinating customers and suppliers from all over the world and in varying time zones and will be expecting round the clock responses, and also trying to accommodate time for eating, sleeping, showering, and socialising.
2. Come up with a name and purchase your domains
Business analysts at Lend say, “create a name that is not only easy to remember but one that is also easy to spell.” They also suggest, “think about purchasing both the .com and .com.au versions of your site for it is relatively cheap to own a domain.”
You can also consider purchasing alternate spellings to bring in customers who might have accidentally misspelt the name. However, you need to be cautious as some payment gateways require that the domain be spelt in the exact same way as the business registration, or you will have to apply to "trade as".
3. Evaluate your own skills and fill the gaps
When you outsource, you are able to focus more on what you enjoy and what you are good at. It makes a lot more sense to concentrate on what you can do well and hire an expert to assist you to create everything excellently than to take on more than you can handle and have undesirable results. Take advantage of your contact list; there'll definitely be someone who either possesses the skills that you need or knows someone else who does.
4. Differentiate yourself from your competitors
Considering that there is an infinite number of online retailers, what will motivate the customers to do business with you, and come back again and again? There was an unmet consumer need in the Australian market for elegant, unique and high-quality pieces, with an affordable price tag for women aged 25-35. Look to fill that gap.
5. Create an attractive and fully functioning website
These two aspects are just as important as the other; however, unless you are utilising a "kit" or a pre-designed tool, it shouldn't come as a shock that this can't be accomplished by a single individual. You need a project manager, graphics designer, and a web developer to create a site and handle any major changes. Ensure that both the site and the fashion look appealing to bring in customers, and also ensure that they have an easy time and a good customer experience while purchasing by having a check out process that flows. When your site has over-complicated design, it is easy to lose customers.
6. Utilise social media to create awareness and confidence in your brand
You cannot talk about fashion without mentioning social media. Social media is a powerful tool for showing your customers your new products, providing styling tips, and connecting in ways that aren't necessarily the hard sell. Customers are able to create a connection with your brand through social media and build a more meaningful relationship and long-term loyalty. Build credibility by linking with bloggers with the same target market; people are often inclined to follow customised style and suggestions from others.
7. Stick to your passion
Operating your own business can, at times, be quite stressful. However, never let this deter you from achieving your goals and dreams. Your passion will be expressed in all that you do, and it is contagious - when you are positive about your product, other people will also become positive about it. After all, keep in mind that it is a business - there will be ups and downs, make adjustments as needed, but never be detracted from your passion or lose your drive. Always remember why you chose to pursue this.
8. Assess what works and what doesn't
A great benefit of running an online store, instead of offering the products face to face in an office or by the street-side, is access to a great amount of data and analytics tools. You are able to keep an eye on your tasks, your customers and even your progress. When need be, adjust your offering, this means that you might need to change your product offering, increase or decrease your size range, or target particular areas.