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E-tail orders surged in May but average order value fell says True Fit

Published
Jun 2, 2020
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UK fashion checkouts rose 115% by volume in May and web traffic was up 39%, according to new figures from True Fit's Fashion Genome, which looks at data from 170 million shoppers. And while early signs of recovery are being seen ahead of stores reopening, the firm also believes that digital-first will be the way forward.


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The fashion personalisation platform said the May figures show “the fashion industry — one of retail's hardest hit verticals — is showing gradual green shoots of recovery”.

However, it also warned that average order value (AOV) remained low, falling 9% year-on-year for the first three weeks in May, meaning the total value of sales remains suppressed. This is perhaps unsurprising with reports that many purchases during May included items such as loungewear, rather than office clothing and occasionwear that would have boosted basket values.

Fashion genome is claimed to be the world's largest connected data set for fashion as it analyses transactions from 17,000 retail brands and processes data from 170 million shoppers who are registered users.

And while its numbers show a clear resurgence of interest in fashion purchases, the value of total sales is still recovering from the impact of Covid-19. Overall, True Fit is predicting that global fashion buys in 2020 could fall by 30%, with luxury hit hardest, dropping 40%.

It’s interesting that as some e-tail sites have remained open throughout the crisis (such as Asos and Boohoo) and others that closed (Net-A-Porter, Schuh, Quiz, Next) have reopened, some other retailers that have large store estates are aiming to boost their e-tail ops.

Only this week Ted baker said as much and earlier, H&M said it would take “forceful measures” that would “lead to a fast shift towards digital” after it had to shut 75% of its stores worldwide. 

As UK fashion stores emerge from lockdown this month, only 41% of shoppers say they will be comfortable revisiting stores. 

William Adler, CEO at True Fit, said: “We’re starting to see the re-emergence of retail – a charge that is being led by e-commerce as fashion brands start to adapt their strategies to accommodate emerging shopper buying behaviours brought about by the Covid-19 lockdown.

“Retailers, who once may have flirted with the notion of digital-first, are seeing the era of digital-first unfolding in front of them. This means they will need to intensify their digital execution – not just to replace revenues that once came from shops, but also to address friction in-store, such as fitting room closures or increased demand for click-and-collect capabilities – as retail recovers.”

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