Making it in fashion is difficult in and industry where Amazon has cornered more than 20 percent of the online fashion business. Kate Hudson’s Fabletics has done just that. The company is valued at $250 million and has pioneered the activewear movement. For the past three years Fabletics has posted enormous growth based on it novel subscription model.
In years past high worth brands have been defined their price and quality of their product. However, the recent economic downturn means this combo is not enough if a business is to remain competitive and profitable. Nowadays things like customer experience, gamification and last mile service are vital in helping modern consumers determine what a high value product is. Fabletics strategy of comparing themselves to Warby Parker and Apple has already paid off. They already have 16 stores and they are expanding to new locations in Illinois, Hawaii, California and Florida.
Gregg Throgmartin, General Manager at Fabletics believes creating a high value brand from the first day was critical to their success. He also says their membership model, which offers personalized services and fashionable service at affordable services has been another crucial factor.
Fabletics is a pioneer in many wheres. It reversed the showrooming trend where customers browse products online and then purchase cheaper products elsewhere. Fabletics works by letting customers browse for items on their physical store and then they can complete the purchase online. This has resulted in high conversion rate of new members. According to Gregg 30 to 50 percent of customers who walk into their stores are members and 25 percent of those who come into the store are converted into members.
Fabletics has also embraced data to ensure success of their online store. Data is used to show customers only the most relevant items both online and in stores. Fabletics use geo-data from their online stores to determine which items should be stocked in a specific store. This approach means that a store’s stock can be tweaked based on trends and changes in taste. Members’ preference also play a significant role in determining which items are stocked at local stores. Cameras within the store are used to create heat maps that are combined with real-time sales data to gain even more insight into consumer behavior. Dustin Netral, Senior Vice President of Operations believes that user preference data allows Fabletics to provide customers with the best service possible. Only time will tell if Fabletics will be able to disable Amazon on online fashion retail, but they are on the right track.