Fashion Customer Service Outsourcing | How to Scale Your Growing Fashion Company
We all know fashion e-commerce is super competitive, but for every emerging brand that has popped up, there are those that have successfully scaled up. The right people, proper funding, strong brand values, and the right products are the key factors in moving from a small start-up to a booming profitable business.
Fashion is a multi-billion dollar industry which makes it one of the largest industries in the global economy — in 2020, it reached $31.4 billion. What can we say? People just like to look good, mostly for their selfies and social media pics.
Brick and mortar stores that had to temporarily close in 2020 may never open again. Shopping online was once considered to be a convenience and a luxury but in 2021 it’s a necessity. The huge selection of the entire world’s products is available to anyone with an internet connection, a credit card, and a shipping address.
You need to separate your brand from the competition and really stand out. It takes a lot of strategic thinking and hard work to do so. But how could you really focus on scaling when you have customers to service? The answer is to outsource your customer service, so you don’t have to think about it because it’s handled for you by the pros.
So how can you scale your e-commerce business? We’re here to tell you!
1. Create an E-commerce Business Model
Here’s the deal, building an e-commerce business takes more than choosing a brand name, creating product listings, and starting to sell products online. Even the greatest fashion e-commerce businesses can fail if not marketed properly to drive enough traffic to the site.
It’s important to choose a business model that allows you to scale and grow. Whether you’re a private label, on-demand manufacturing, or custom cut-and-sew, you want to choose based on your longevity potential.
Choosing the right e-commerce business model for your online store might be a more extensive challenge than you originally thought, especially if you’re brand new to the industry. Your highest chance of a successful business starts with knowing which model best fits your target niche and resources as well as your capabilities.
Enormous piles of unsold clothes are stored in warehouses across the U.S. A business model that allows you to pause your operation from one day to the next works fabulously for many e-commerce businesses.
Consider a subscription option. It’s a smart tactic as once a customer has paid the membership fee, they are more inclined to shop more often to get their money’s worth.
Choosing your niche is the most important step in opening your fashion e-commerce business. Start this process by researching and pinpointing the successful companies already working in the same space. Be sure that the area you choose is competitive – an absence of competition usually indicates that there’s no market, either.
Laying the right foundation for success is important before you scale up. The reason is without a strong foundation — which includes fulfillment, marketing, traffic, SEO, website user experience, and shipping strategies — you will be stuck struggling to stay afloat.
2. Influence Marketing
Many fashion brands that are looking to market their products, build brand awareness, and drive customer engagement are turning to influence marketing.
This could be done by simply boosting your brand’s social media presence through influencers. This has the benefit of building a more direct relationship with your customers, helping to both retain users and get the most view time for your fashion products. Look at Kim Kardashian West’s Skims business — it’s grown primarily through influence marketing.
Another way is to build a more general channel covering topics including trends and style or fashion news, beauty and fashion advice, and then position your brand as sponsors or recommend its products.
3. Website Content and Flow
For starters, you need to be selling the right products for growth, have a good pricing strategy and tools on your website. It’s also important for your website to include all the right information for a pleasant and seamless user experience, including the right FAQs, that it’s optimized for eCommerce SEO traffic, it’s easy to navigate, and has a welcoming home page.
A user-friendly website basically means anyone could easily use it. If you make it hard for your visitors to view your products or complete a purchase, they’re likely to leave without buying. It’s that simple. You could quickly lose credibility with a poorly designed website which will increase the bounce rate. When creating a layout for your website, having a clear and easy-to-follow structure is important. Too much content is just too much for today’s shoppers. They want to quickly get what they need and move on to watching their reality shows.
Quick questions to ask yourself: Does your website make it easy for viewers to contact you? Do you have a toolbar for quick searches? Is your website easy to navigate? Do you have too many pop-ups? Do you offer a guest checkout for a speedy purchase? Do you have dead links? All of these things will raise your viewers’ affinity for your business or lower it.
4. The Right Products
Do you have in-demand products that have high growth potential? Is your apparel inline with today’s fashion trends? Do you have profit growth potential for long-term customer loyalty with well-priced products? Can you expand on the categories in your niche for repeat customers?
5. Marketing That Actually Works
Yes, we’re back on the marketing topic because it’s that important. You will really need a strong marketing strategy from the get-go, as this will cement your traffic streams and help you grow. Getting people in the door is a key to a successful business. For e-commerce, it’s getting people to your website and getting them to complete their order.
Keeping customers coming back is an even bigger challenge. Repeat sales are not accidental, and with creating a positive customer experience, buyers are likely to purchase again and refer to the friends! Always get your customer’s email address to continue marketing efforts to them to keep them coming back.
This could include strategies to:
- Upsell your products
- Integrate social media
- Capture emails and create email campaigns, including personalized messages and offers
- Create content marketing for SEO
- Engage visitors with live chat
- Ensure your website is user-friendly
6. Clear Brand Vision
Do you have a clear understanding of your target markets? Do you have a good idea of who your biggest competitors are including their products and prices? Is the message your displaying fit with your mission, and values? Say something powerful about your business, be inspirational and aspirational.
7. A/B Tests and Conversion Rates
Every page on an e-commerce website encourages the desired action to be taken by its visitors. A/B testing aims to increase the conversion rate of that particular action. Conversions include:
- Purchasing a product — the primary and most important conversion for an online store
- Signing up for your newsletter
- Subscribing to a service
- Filling out a survey
A/B testing aims to get the most out of existing traffic by optimizing a web page to promote conversions. Increasing traffic can boost results, but A/B testing aims to optimize a page to increase revenue with current marketing dollars spent.
8. Have a Totally Awesome Customer Service Team
OK, this one is really important as it could make or break your business. If you’re good to your customers, they will be good to you in the form of repeat orders and referrals, aka free marketing! You don’t want to be known for the company that doesn’t answer the phone when a customer calls for help or responds to an email or social media post of a customer in need. Customer service takes time, patience, and real effort.
It is true online stores tend to have fewer expenses, but e-commerce overhead can quickly add up. By outsourcing customer service, you could save the time and money it takes to hire and keep a full-time customer service team staffed. Outsourcing customer service allows you and your existing staff to concentrate on activities that bring in customers and drive revenues up.
This is why a growing number of companies are offshoring outsourcing their customer service work as a way to reduce costs and streamline their operations. Increased revenue does directly impact your company’s bottom line and allows you to increase your profit margins. Since you and your team are free from performing non-income producing tasks like data entry or customer service, they can focus on marketing, networking, and other activities that increase revenue.
Competition is fierce for most businesses, especially the fashion industry, making companies look at every opportunity to reduce cost while maintaining quality products and services. Outsourcing services like customer service, including your call center, online chat, SMS, and emails, can save you and your staff a ton of time, money, and, let’s face it — stress.
Your outsourced customer service team will be experienced and trained and will be at your beck and call to handle your customers’ questions, problems, and needs. They are focused on just that — customer service. So you can rest assured your customers are taken care of by the pros and allow you to focus on getting more customers.
Sum Things Up
Regardless of what type of clothing or accessories you sell, consumers will always have other options to turn to. Figuring out what sets your brand apart and how to communicate this to your target audience may require some soul searching. Typically, it will include a brand story and require identifying brand values that align with what you actually sell.
Outsourcing your customer service will save you a ton of time, money, and stress. It can also increase your bottom line while you and your team are more productive, focusing on tasks that will generate revenue, including investing extra money into your company and increasing marketing efforts.
Contact AwesomeOS.com today! We can tell you more about outsourcing processes for your fashion business.