Today's e-commerce is becoming increasingly immersive and interactive. Building a rich content experience is key to attracting consumers and converting them to buyers.
The global pandemic’s e-commerce bright spot
When the entire world came to a standstill at the peak of the coronavirus epidemic, shoppers turned to their handheld devices and PCs to scroll through online retail offerings. As a result, global e-commerce transaction volume rose 24% between January and April of 2020 compared with the prior 12-month period, according to data from universal payments company ACI Worldwide.* Categories that saw major surges in sales included groceries, cleaning products, fitness and gardening equipment, among others.
An outlook for recovery for fashion retailers and brands
During the same period between January and April of 2020, fashion retailers and brands saw their sales plummet. By Rakuten Intelligence’s estimations, starting the week of March 9, 2020, online apparel sales dropped 13.6% year over year.** The market research firm also found that apparel sales subsequently rebounded starting April 13, 2020, maintaining relative momentum compared with the same period the previous year. As retail fashion sales slowly recover from the public health crisis slump, the question on most brands and retailers’ minds is, what does it take to sell fashion products online in the post-COVID-19 era?
The importance of a compelling online shopping experience
Key to any winning digital sales strategy is a studied emphasis on the customer’s shopping experience online. The full range of interactions with the brand or retailer’s e-commerce boutique and resulting consumer impressions make up this digital experience. Today, savvy online shoppers use multiple devices to browse merchandise, compare prices and make their final choice. The last step in the decision-making process before payment is influenced to a great extent by the level of detail and number of high-resolution views and videos in the product information provided.
The right infrastructure to build an engaging digital experience
Executing a successful digital channel marketing strategy means managing editorial content and marketing assets across several e-commerce websites and marketplaces, perhaps even in multiple countries. The implementation of a product information management (PIM) system allows marketing teams to gather all the information they need to publish to these various platforms by accessing a collaborative solution connected to the company’s PLM and ERP. Centralized storage of data, images and marketing assets makes information gathering faster and more efficient while preventing any errors due to manual entry. This is because data and assets must be uploaded just once to the system, for unlimited access by all connected stakeholders.
Streamlined content creation across all digital channels
A PIM solution enables marketing teams to simply and easily create content and manage internal and external team workflows. Information on design inspiration uploaded to the PLM, for instance, can be enriched with copy and assets to tell a story and launch a campaign. PIM systems incorporate filters that allow fashion companies and retailers to include localized or translated information for specific channels or markets, ensuring content resonates with the target audience. Integration of PIM capabilities with PLM and DAM solutions can furthermore extend data sharing beyond the product development process to cover all stages of commercialization from design to storefront. With full control over content creation and the right resources at their fingertips, marketing teams can deliver content-rich experiences designed to win over fickle shoppers.