Showrooming is the practice where shoppers examine items during store visits, but choose to buy them online because they are cheaper there. Online retailers are in a position to offer better deals as they don’t have to bear the same operational costs as their brick-and-mortar counterparts. Effectively, traditional retailers unwittingly act as showrooms for ecommerce portals.
This iconic image from Breakfast at Tiffany’s has taken over the active imagination of people all over the world. It has, literally changed and broken many stereotypes about fashion.
Since we are a part of the fashion industry, at Intelligence Node, this image has three takeaways for us:
One, the lady herself!
Elegance is the Only Beauty that Never Fades.
Two- BLACK is always IN.
And Three- Sunglasses go with ANY look!
It is the last one we want to talk about today. Sunglasses.
Today accessorizing is all about choosing the correct thing to go with your dress or look. And ‘sunglasses’ are the ultimate accessory. Not just because they look cool. No. But because they are so expensive- they are sure to grab eyeballs, even the ones hiding behind them!
There’s a lot of sizzle in the sun-glass business, reports predict. Luxottica, the leading manufacturer and, in most cases, owner of fashion eye-wear (they also make and own prescription opticals) earned a revenue of 2.02 Billion Euros in the 2nd quarter of 2013 alone.
The profits and revenues are growing exponentially. And so is demand. It was not so long ago that glasses were considered ugly or geeky. And people did not wear them unless they had to. But this perception was subtly changed, by movie stars like Audrey Hepburn and Tom Cruise, among others.
The big fashion houses loved the trend too. And we had Versace, Prada, Ralph Lauren, etc., selling branded sunglasses. Today these sunglasses are mostly in the ‘premium’ range. Any branded and authentic pair of sunglasses costs anywhere upwards of 1000 Rupees.
In spite of the many debates going on about how and why quality eye-wear is so expensive, people are not deterred. They are happy to pay 6000 Rupees. for a ‘branded’ pair of sunglasses. There is a parallel market selling cheaper versions of the sunglasses, on the streets especially. And these make a good profit too. But that does not stop the originals from reaching high profit margins in any way.
This year, the various fashion weeks too used eye-wear to give their various collections a special zing. Fashion makers know that sunglasses are like the one accessory that determines a time or a place that a look was conceived in.
At Intelligence Node, we think that glares were, are and always will be cool.
As Posh Spice, Victoria Beckham wowed the crowds with this, ‘not too normal for her,’ ensemble, while marketing her own line of branded sunglasses.
But, and this is our main concern, when it comes to e-commerce, and selling or buying sunglasses on-line, there is one big question that comes to mind- what shape or style will suit my face? As a retailer selling sunglasses, reaching perfection when it comes to individual sales is a big challenge.
When it comes to eTail, especially for websites selling a variety of apparel and accessories, betting on ‘the sunnies’ is a risky proposition. These are products that have a higher margin; and so may remain on the shelves longer. And trends don’t really affect the sunglasses. Sun-glass styles keep rotating from time to time.
Knowing all this, how to ensure that your customers buy sunglasses- repeatedly? How to ensure that your prices are not turning away customers? How to decide which brands to capitalize on? These are the questions that most etailers have to bet on.
We say, why bet- when you can be sure? You have a lot of info at your disposal; why not use it to understand the current climate and accordingly adjust your prices, processes, etc. Providing a virtual environment that complements the various face shapes and also fits specific budgets is not impossible any more. Your insights will give you the answers that you need.
At Intelligence Node we believe that when it comes to sunglasses- the two “P”s are perfectly applicable- ‘premium’ and ‘personalized.’ Utilizing the resources one has, and not digging for things that may or may not exist, is the way to success we think. And you dear retailers have been doing just that for ages. This is why we love working with you!
Remember seeing the words, ‘you might also like’ while you are shopping on-line? Or the ‘people you may know’ on LinkedIn or Google Plus? How many times have we actually stumbled upon these words and ended up clicking them, just to find out a little something different?
When Big Data is mentioned, ‘benchmarking’ is often mentioned in the same breath. As amazing and accurate as benchmarking with data is, it is not the end all of big data. There is something more to Big Data- that gives it so much more value. It is called a “Recommendation Engine” in industry lingo.
Recommendation is that one step ahead of benchmarking or comparing data. Because, comparing data against your competitors is great from a ‘getting insights’ perspective. The next logical, and often-times undeniably important step, is using those insights productively. A recommendation engine is what turning insights into actions is all about.