Fashion-Technology News Roundup – February 2016
As the worlds of fashion and technology advance, the way they intersect changes as well. Here’s our roundup of the most recent fashion-technology industry news.
BaubleBar, an e-commerce shop selling fast fashion jewelry, received $20 million in funding from investors. Their competitive edge comes from two major factors. First, the company has created a culture of keeping up with emerging fashion trends. Second, their heavy interest in technology helps them to stay ahead of the game. BaubleBar sells their products both on their e-commerce website and on mobile app. Rivaling competitors’ lengthy production times, BaubleBar can take a jewelry piece from design to sale in four weeks. Now that gives a whole new meaning to fast fashion.
Vox Media is incorporating e-commerce into their online editorial content. They own publications reaching a wide range of readers such as the sports blog SB Nation and technology blog The Verge. Readers will notice links to online stores like Amazon, and any sales made through those links will result in a commission earned by Vox. This practice isn’t new – Gawker Media and Business Insider already have this in place. The result of this business model is not only increased revenues but greater value to the readers.
L’Oreal may be known as a beauty brand, but their dedication to technology is increasing. The company created a wearable sticker aimed at helping the wearer improve their skincare. It’s as unique as it sounds – this sticker measures the amount of UV exposure the skin receives, and reports this data to an app. The data is then analyzed, and the app provides personalized skincare tips and information. This includes recommendations on skincare products for different skin types, colors, and tones. Also, the app will remind the wearer to reapply sunscreen.
It’s that time of year when businesses are creating their annual marketing budgets. A recent Fashion and Beauty Monitor study determined that companies are dedicating 30-75% of marketing funds on influencers. An influencer is anyone with a strong social media following and frequent updates. These personalities can help to spread the word of a new product quickly, and get fashion in front of a wider audience. While it may be difficult to find a lasting, authentic partnership with a tastemaker, getting your product in front of a social media maven’s audience can cause sales to skyrocket.
PopSugar has plans to transform ShopStyle, a search engine for fashion, into a universal fashion and accessories shopping cart that can be used to make purchases from many retailers. Currently, ShopStyle only links shoppers to the product of their choosing at a retailer’s website for purchase, but PopSugar will make it so users can create a profile for use on either the ShopStyle website or mobile app, which will store their credit card information and allow users to make purchases from various retailers directly on ShopStyle. With this change, PopSugar hopes that ShopStyle will become the “iTunes or App Store of fashion and accessories.”
As the world of e-commerce becomes more crowded, many brands that were once online-only are beginning to open up real brick and mortar stores. The e-commerce space has become crowded, and brands are finding it tough to get in front of the audience they desire. Brands such as Warby Parker, Bonobos, and Blue Nile have opened physical shops in select locations and communities. In this new market, fashion brands are finding that offering consumers the chance to try on their product in person increases sales.
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