The fashion industry, particularly online clothes buying, has been placed into a headlock by Amazon. This online marketing giant is the largest retailer of clothes on the planet, partially due to the idea of showrooming. However, reverse showrooming looks to break this hold and one company is leading the charge.
What Is Reverse Showrooming?
Showrooming is the process of trying on clothes in a brick-and-mortar shop and then purchasing them online. The idea here is to see how they look on a person and then save money by buying on Amazon.
The idea here is to break the stranglehold that Amazon has on the fashion industry. They are easily the leaders in clothes sales online and are seriously affecting the major dealers that offer deals and sales in these brick-and-mortar shops.
Who Came Up With This Idea?
The originator of this idea appears to be Fabletics. This shop was started by Kate Hudson as an active wear line that offered women a variety of fine-tuned personal exercise gear.
A simple survey would allow subscribers to get access to clothes that were designed for their needs. These outfits couldn’t be purchased anywhere else, making them unique to each person.
They have since expanded to brick-and-mortar shops and are using reverse showrooming as a way of expanding their business model. The idea is to help break into Amazon’s market by stopping people from showrooming in this way. They offer their subscribers the ability to check out their online clothes (which, remember, don’t exist in other stores) before purchasing them.
Is It Working For Fabletics?
Fabletics is currently expanding their brick-and-mortar shops all around the nation. Their profits have risen and they’ve not only expanded into more casual and dress ware for women, but are also offering some options for men.
It’s fair to say that reverse showrooming is working for them, but it remains to be seen if they can ever break Amazon’s total hold over the marketplace. Sometimes large companies can either seem to be or completely be too large to take out by one company, no matter how good their product.
There are, of course, precedents for this kind of take over. Think of how huge Apple was in the 80s and early 90s and how Microsoft completely took over the market and nearly drove the out of business. While Apple was able to recover due to brilliance of Steve Jobs, it’s not quite the same.
Then there is the embarrassing faux paus of Blockbuster, who were once the biggest video rental chain in the world, failing to buy Netflix and getting run out of business by them.
While Fabletics may not completely destroy Amazon (nor is it likely interested in such a task), it is fair to say that their success could change the way that online clothes shopping is handled in the future.